“Ain’t no drama, like family drama, cause family drama, don’t stop!“
Color me hopeful.
My father died when I was six years old and my brother is nearly a generation older and didn’t appreciate my existence. There was one man in the family who took me under his wing, my Uncle. He would take me fishing and camping and include me in his family events.
This was nine billion years ago when fake wood Station Wagons roamed the earth. It was back in the day, when department stores had a husky department for chubbinel or fat boys. My uncle had a bushel of kids all near my age. They were like my sisters and brothers. I would take the bus, some 17 miles away to his home, a place I felt welcome. My cousins and I would dance to the latest 45’s records on their Sears Silvertone Stereo.
He was the most important male in my life. I wanted to be like him, have a house full of loving children. I think my love for station wagons and minivans today is due to my admiration of this man . As I grew older, cracks appears in the relationship with my uncle.
Whisper’s from family members hundreds of miles away. He would interview me about the cost of my clothes and this news made its way to the Pacific Northwest. I learned that I was spoiled,took advantage of my mother. At thirteen, I was larger and taller than my uncle. When I was 18, he did something unthinkable to my side of the family. When I challenged him, he hit me in the chest. (my body didn’t move) I didn’t hit him, but I think this scared him.
From this moment forward, I became a pariah.
All contract between me and my grown cousins ended. It was like a death. Then the rumors began…….. My uncle created a number of false stories about my life. It didn’t matter he didn’t know I where I lived or what was actually happening in my life.
From that point forward, my cousins and I only saw each others at funerals. At the meetings, I always felt a spark of days gone by at the sad events, leaving me hopeful . But it wasn’t meant to be.
Days, years, decades. Marriages, Divorces, Children, Grand Children.and of course Death. None of our parents are alive.
Last summer, I learned about the death of one my cousins. The last time we’ve seen each other was at the funeral of her mother. I called her older sister to get the date and time of the funeral. She said, she didn’t know. Other relatives from out of state asked if I had information, because they wanted to attend. After a couple of un-returned calls, I Googled her name.
I learned the services was being held at Funeral home less than three miles from where I live. We actually lived an hour from each other. The downside, the services was taking place the very next day. I contacted my niece and and asked her if she would join me. A grandmother, she was a teenager the last time she’d seen this side of the family.
While it was a sad occasion, I was actually looking forward to seeing this side of my family, my niece brought her son.
Entering the building, I noticed the elder sibling. As children she and I were close and I was greeted with a smile. From there it was downhill. Our reception was chilly. Nice to see you and why are you here!
Although, the services began at two. Most of the people arrived after three. I could feel the divisions within the family. Children, and Grandchildren. Not the loving family, I remembered. Perhaps it was all in my mind back then or perhaps we all too young to develop resentments. Even though I was an unwanted guest, I was happy being with my family.
Forever hopeful, I exchanged telephone numbers with the family and announced that we should make an attempt to stay in touch. I could feel my niece and her son giving me the side eye, like please!! The two of them teased me in the car! A couple of weeks later, I contacted a couple of the cousins and Melba Toast had more moisture than the conversation. It takes two people to have a relationship so…….
Guess, I’ll see you next funeral.
I think its normal to hold on to those special times/memories. However, those memories, moments in time that can cloud our realities. Forever hopeful, we sometines stay in fruitless and sometimes painful relationships too long because of a memory .
If my uncle was alive, I would tell him about the positive impact he had on my life. Those memories make me smile today. At the end of day, we have to accept what is. Not what could be. It takes two to build a relationship. Angry, I’m not and resentments are a waste of time.
My uncle was highly regarded by his children which is to be expected. What he said about me may have irreparably damaged any possibility of relationship with my cousins. My love for them is there and that has to be enough.
From the moment I first saw the Tesla Model S, I was in love, I didn’t know it was an electric car, I just knew it was sexy, at 70 grand, it was out of my league.
In a few short years, Tesla has become a Prestigious brand, rivaling Mercedes Benz,Land Rover and BMV. Tesla retains a market capitalization in excess of $559 billion as of this writing, greater than the next three automakers combined (Toyota, Volkswagen, Daimler). The first quarter of 2021 was Tesla’s most lucrative yet, with a reported $438 million in profit.
Despite Tesla’s recent profitability, the company produces far fewer vehicles than its competitors. Japan-based Toyota, with market capitalization of $211 billion, sold 9.5 million vehicles in 2020, followed by Germany’s Volkswagen ($148 billion, 9.3 million vehicles), Daimler ($94 billion, 2.8 million vehicles), and US-based General Motors ($80 million, 2.5 million vehicles). Thus, Tesla’s four largest competitors accounted for over 24 million vehicles in 2020, which is more than 48 times the 500,000 vehicles Tesla sold.
Tesla’s are sexy and at the end of the day, sometimes its about the pretty girl. I have driven hundreds of miles behind the wheel of the Tesla’s (Model S and Model 3) and the Chevy Bolt. This sexy girl is faster, handles better and is very unique. The software is superior, as is the amount of charging stations. The sexy girl is complicated and takes a while to get to know her. In 90% of the vehicles in the world, changing the air flow is simply requires one or two fingers. In the Model 3, these simple adjustments are unnecessarily complicated this and most other controls is controlled via the touchscreen.
The Tesla is a pretty girl and although she has been the ONLY pretty girl at the party for some time. We overlooked her flaws, the fit of her clothes, and paint not matching, and the odd noises because, she was the prettest girl on the street.
I’ve spent a lot of time behind the wheel of the Tesla’s “Model S” and Model 3″ with finicky door handles that don’t pop out on the Model S or the occasional squeak on a low mileage Model 3, something that doesn’t happen on a 47,000 mile Chevy Bolt. Unlike the Bolt, not one Tesla is recommended by Consumer Reports.
Every Tesla’s have driven put a smile on my face. Despite their faults, all of the people I know, who own a Tesla say they would buy another. I’m a person who keeps a vehicle 10 years or longer and early rattles would be disconcerting. To its credit, many fixes to the Tesla are performed online. However, should you need to take your Tesla in for repair, there is only one in Metro Sacramento area, long repair times are and long waits for parts are not uncommon.
There are new cars coming to the marketplace, these cars are built by automakers who have mastered fit and finish issues. At the moment ,Tesla batteries, range, and electronics are superior to the competition. However, fit and finish is inferior to most of the established competition. Rattles as you hit a bump or as you cross a railroad track is not uncommon on many of the Tesla’s .
In 2017, General Motors beat Tesla to the market producing the first EV under forty thousand dollars. The Bolt had a range of 218 miles,(today 259 miles). A good car but absolutely fugly parked next to a Model 3. There are more than three hundred thousand Bolts on American Roads, second to the Model 3.
The Bolt was a BIG hit! In its first year, it won several awards, The North American Car of the Year, Time Magazine Best Inventions, Automobile Magazine, and Motor Trend’s 2017 car of the year.
In the last few years, I’ve sent Elan Musk tweets, asking him to hook me up with a Model 3. In fact I’ve been asking everybody, complete strangers to buy me a Tesla. That’s when Tesla was the only sexy electric on the road. Today, there are others so Elan is off the hook.
Tesla has been around for nearly 10 years. Today, there are new girls on the streets. The new Polestar, Volkswagen ID 4, the Mustang Mach E. Early reviews are mixed, however none are experiencing major fit and finish issues.
Waiting in the wings this fall, is an electric BMW, Hummer, Lucid, Genesis, Mercedes, Nissan, Rivian, Audi and Volvo.
Including these little cuties, the Ionic 5, and the Kia EV6 have a few new tricks. They have a range of 300 miles and Hyundai says they can charge from 10-80% in 18 minutes using a 350kw charger. (which is super fast)
Tesla is facing competition coming from all sides especially from the Volkswagen Group (Audi, Porsche, VW) and Hyundai Group (Kia, Genesis, Hyundai, Ionic and Kia) the winner will be the auto maker that has a full line of vehicles.
Tesla’s is a technological force, however Tesla’s focus, should be on the fit and finish of their vehicles. After 9 years the Model S, continues to have electrical, fit and finish, and suspension issues. This is true with the Model X and there are fit and finish with their Four short years ago, it was GM and Tesla, today there are eight additional automakers who are building competitive electric vehicles.
July 2019: Over half a dozen current and former Tesla employees claim that aggressive production goals have forced workers to take shortcuts when manufacturing its cars in a new report from CNBC. They also accuse Tesla of creating harsh working conditions, especially for employees working in the “GA4” production tent where assembly is not fully automated.
Employees claim that electrical tape was used to patch cracks on plastic brackets containing electrical components, and that cars would sometimes pass through the production line while missing bolts, nuts, or lugs. The employees even provided CNBC with photographic evidence to support their claims. They also claim that Tesla encouraged its employees to work in harsh conditions that were exceptionally hot and dry during the day and cold and wet during the night. (https://www.theverge.com/2019/7/16)
Tesla is has changed the world, building cars like no other. If I were buying my first electric car, it would not be a Tesla. It would be the Chevrolet Bolt.
Yes, the Model 3, is fast and handles better. At $32,000 it is eight thousand dollars lower than the Tesla and unlike the Tesla, it is affordable and reliable and unlike Tesla, the owner has more options should something goes wrong. Spending, fifty thousand dollars for a vehicle with fit and finish issues isn’t acceptable.
More and more people are interested in an Electric Vehicles (EV’s), but many still have questions.
In 2010, just 1,919 EVs were sold in the U.S. Last year nearly 300, 000 were sold. Around the world, countries are increasingly moving towards car production and ownership that is entirely electric. California will phase out the sale of all gasoline-powered vehicles by 2035.
Ford may change the EV market in America!
Ford’s F-150 truck has been the best selling vehicle in America for more than four decades. In 2020, truck sales outsold passenger cars nearly 2 to 1. A few weeks ago Ford announced they were building a full sized electric pick up. The Ford Lightning. When it goes on sale next summer the base model will start at $42,000.
The top trim Lighting will have nearly 600 horsepower and a range of 3000 miles. In less than a month, Ford has received more than 100,000 orders.
201: I know an Electric Vehicle is all electric. BUT why should I buy one and what should I expect?
Most operate the same as the car your driving. With most EV’s you can enter and operate the vehicle , via your cell phone, including unlocking the doors. Unlike the car your driving, you do not have to warm the vehicle, in some cars you can turn on the defrosters via your cell phone.
The first thing you will notice driving an electric car is the instant power from a stop, and they are both smooth and quiet when underway. The driving experience is quite different from a traditional gasoline-fueled car because EVs feel like they glide effortlessly. Electric engines have more torque than convention engines, as a result you can often feel the power pushing you back in your seat.
Most electric vehicles ride comfortably. Despite their heavy batteries, they typically handle well because that battery is positioned low in the vehicle, plus they lack a heavy engine above the front axle.
If you have driven an hybrid car, you know that every time the vehicle coast or when you apply the brakes ,energy is recaptured in the battery where it can be used again In many EV’s, if you place the car in “L” it agressively regenerates energy, as you release the gas pedal the car slows to a stop. Like a hybrid these vehicles excel in stop and go traffic as they return energy to the battery.
Where they differ? (Ev’s vs Dino Vehicles)
Battery electric vehicles have fewer components than a plug-in hybrid or an internal combustion engine vehicle, so they often have lower maintenance costs because they don’t require fluid changes or tune ups. An analysis of Ev’s completed by Consumer Reports experts earlier this year found that EVs generally cost less to own over the long run than their equivalent gasoline-powered counterparts.
Charging and Charging Stations
Electric cars have been on the road for some time. The Nissan Leaf went on sale back in 2010. In 2010, the Leaf had a range of 75 miles . For most owners this wasn’t an issue as the majority of the owners charged their Nissan’s at home. The majority of Ev owners will charge their vehicles at home. Chargers can be purchased at auto stories ,Amazon and Ebay. Most of these can be programed to charge your EV late at night the the electricity rate are lower.
The fueling of a dino car can range from five to fifteen minutes. In an EV, charging can range from twenty minutes to ninety minutes. The newer cars have a faster charging rates. Ford say’s the Mach E at a fast charger can charge the battery from 10% to 80% in 38 minutes. For comparison, my 2018, Chevy Bolt needed 80 minutes to charge from 10% to 80%
The other issue is the availability of charging stations, in California there are nearly thirteen thousand charging locations, however in the second most populous and second largest state (land) Texas has less than three thousand. This could be an issue for someone who frequently drive interstate or long distances. There are hundreds of new fast charging stations, coming online weekly as more people go electric.
The other issue is range, most EV have a range of more than 200 miles. However there are a few Ev’s with an electric range of less than 150 miles. Tesla’s Model S has a range of 400 miles. 250 is adequate for most drivers.
Cold Weather (Especially if you live in an area where the temperture drops below 30 degrees)
All vehicles, whether they run on gas or kilowatts, become less energy-efficient in cold weather. The typical internal combustion engine vehicle can see its gas mileage drop by around 20 percent in the cold, and this effect tends to be more pronounced with electric cars. Cold temperatures can substantially hamper both a battery’s performance and its ability to accept a charge.
A study conducted by the AAA found that when the mercury dips to 20°F and the heater is in use, an electric car’s operating range will drop by an average of 41 percent. That means if you own a Nissan Leaf, that’s otherwise rated to run for 150 miles on a charge, you’d likely only be drive for around 88 miles before having to plug it in. You’ll also find it takes longer to bring the vehicle’s battery pack up to a full charge. Frigid temperatures also limit an electric car’s regenerative braking function, which recovers energy that would otherwise be lost during decelerating or stopping and sends it back to the battery.
While gasoline engines generate large amounts of heat that can be harvested to warm a car’s interior, an electric car’s climate control system relies solely on battery power to accomplish this function and the battery drains quicker whenever the heat is on. Some newer model EV have heat pumps, the heat pump maximizes the distance that EVs can travel on a single charge by scavenging waste heat to warm the cabin.
Why are EV’s so expensive?
The battery is the most expensive part on the EV. Most automakers are taking Tesla lead by first building expensive luxury EV’s. GM next EV, the GMC Hummer will be released this fall. The first models will cost $100,000
In 2015, Tesla said the prices for 2018 Model 3 would begin at $35,000. Today the Model 3 with a range of 263 miles starts at $40,000. The price 2017 Chevy Bolt was $37,000. Today you can purchase an 2021 Bolt with a range of 259 miles for 25,000.
China is by far the largest EV market. The best selling EV,is the Hong Guang Mini EV. This Ev is a joint venture with the state-owened SAIC Motor and General Motors The Hong Guang Mini, has a range of 75 miles and a top speed of 62 miles per hour. The tiny car will seat 4 and cost $5000 with air conditioning. The Mini is currently the second best selling in the world after Tesla’s model 3. One could see these vehicles in America’s most densely populated cities. New York, Boston, San Francisco and DC. SAIC plans to export these cars.
Base prices start around $30,000 for the Chevy Bolt, Hyundai Ioniq and Nissan Leaf. From there, prices run the gamut and span into six figures for some European and the Tesla Model S and Model X.
Many electric cars are eligible for up to a $7,500 federal tax credit to help offset the extra cost. Under current rules, once an automaker sells 200,000 electric cars, the value of the tax credit decreases and eventually fades away. So far, this has affected only two automakers, General Motors and Tesla. However, that doesn’t apply to city and state tax credits, rebates, or vouchers are available in California, Colorado, New York, Texas, and elsewhere; these can make the costs of electric cars more compelling and competitive with the price of non-EVs. In Sacramento, the public utility offers a rebate and there are other rebates available. Consumers with a home solar system can really lower or even eliminate their energy costs.
It pays to do your homework and look beyond the sticker price to find out how much you’d be paying after state, federal, and local incentives, as well as local lease offers. You may be surprised to find that some EVs are more affordable than you think.
Micro Review: Ford Mustang Mach E
After much whining, and a local Ford dealer allowed me to drive a Mach E with a chaperone for five very brief minutes. Brief impression, quick, solid, a little quirky and heavy. The room was adequate for my ginormous body, unlike the Tesla, most of the controls are where they are normally and in the brief time I drove it got a few thumbs up.
As of June 1, The Mach E outsold the regular Mustang.
So should I buy an electric vehicle? (Today)
There are many factors to consider before buying an Electric Vehicle.
A perfect candidated for an EV is someone who lives in a metro area and owns her own home. Should they need to charge their car, charging stations would be plentiful. They can charge their EV at home and use it to commute to work. This person would see major savings in first year.
Someone who lives in a rural area and commutes to work an EV could be incovenient as their are fewer chargers available should his EV needs charging. If he want to reduce fuel cost he might consider a plug in or regular hybrid. Ford has an hybrid verson of its popular F-150 truck. Hybrid Suv’s are available from Toyota, Hyundai and Kia.
If your the person who wants an EV, but the price is too steep. Consider a used EV. Old Nissan Leafs with a range of 100 miles are selling for less than 5000. Used Chevy Bolts with a range of 200 to 250 miles are selling between 14 to 17 thousand dolllars. Most automakers insure the batteries for 100,000 miles.
Before you purchase a new EV, research what local, state, city, utlitity discounts, rebates are available.
Anthony Ramos and Melissa Barrera in the musical ‘In the Heights.”
By: Sandra Gonzales\Cnn
Lin-Manuel Miranda is asking for some paciencia y fe, saying in a note posted to social media on Monday that he will do better representing Afro-Latinos in his future projects.vMiranda’s statements come days after “In The Heights,” a musical about a vibrant and diverse Latinx community in New York City, was released in theaters. The film has been criticized for featuring dark-skinned Afro-Latinos in background and dance scenes but not in main roles.”In trying to paint a mosaic of this community, we fell short,” he said. “I’m truly sorry.”
Actress and singer Leslie Grace, who plays Nina Rosario in the film, is Afro-Latino. In an interview with The Root’s Felice León, which reignited the discussion about Latinx colorism this weekend, Grace diplomatically handled her response to the criticism saying, “I hope that this is cracking that glass ceiling because I do hope to see my brothers and sisters that are darker than me lead these movies.”
Miranda said in his note that he’s “learning from the feedback.” “I thank you for raising it, and I’m listening,” he wrote.
“In The Heights” opened to $11.4 million at the box office.
“I’m trying to hold space for both the incredible pride in the movie we made and be accountable for our shortcomings,” Miranda added. “Thanks for your honest feedback. I promise to do better in my future projects, and I’m dedicated to the learning and evolving we all have to do to make sure we are honoring our diverse and vibrant community.”
Those who follow this blog, electric vehicles have a warm place in my heart.
My electric car journey, began in the summer of 2019 after my personal car was totaled.
There is a car sharing program in Sacramento (Gig). With a Gig car, using your phone you can rent an electric Chevrolet Bolt by the hour or longer. The program is perfect for the city dweller who needs a car for an hour or so for an errand or for a weekend. The cars are parked on the streets, so once your done with the car, you can simply park it in front of your house for the next renter.
In the last few years, many of my friends have bought electric cars. I have driven hundreds of miles in the Tesla Model S and Model 3, along with the Chevy Bolt. When it comes to handling, range, power, charging and overall technology, the Tesla’s are superior to the Chevy Bolt. however, the Chevy Bolt is a better car, in my opinion. (see the following blog)
Two years ago if you owned an electric vehicle, outside of a large California Metro Area and your car wasn’t a Tesla, then it sucked to be you!
In the summer of 2019, Tesla’s car would remind you how much energy that was left on the battery and where the nearest Tesla supercharger was to you, before the battery went dry. It was and remains one of Tesla’s strong points and the driving range on the Tesla are superior to other automakers at any price and unlike other EV’s, Tesla has adaptors to allow a Tesla owner to use of other charging systems
Sure, you can charge your batteries at home, but what about a long drive? In Sacramento, there are many places to charge your EV, however if it wasn’t a Tesla, it could be agnosingly slow. Locating a EV charger in a well lit area was rare. Most of the non-Tesla chargers were behind building in an isolated industrial area or in a dark section of a shoping mall.
In September of 2019, I wanted my sister and other family members to experiece an electric car. It was mild day, one hundred and five. Four adults were impressed with the room inside the Chevy Bolt, my sister was less impressed as I ran out power and left my family stranded at an outlet mall in Tulare, Cailfornia. My sister says,she will NEVER own an electric car.
Click on the link below for the full Ugly, Scary, Terrible story!
In 2010, just 1,919 EVs were sold in the U.S. In 2020, nearly 300,000 Ev’s were sold. 122,016 EVs were sold in March 2021 setting sales records. (U.S. Department of Transportation)
California leads the nation with 12,389 charging stations, followed by New York, Florida and Texas with 2,000 or more each. Today, all over america, shoppers can charge their cars at Wal Mart, Target and large malls.
In the summer of 2019, my phone app directed me to a charging station located in a parking garage in Downtown Visalia, Cailfornia where I was towed. What it didn’t tell me was the charger wasn’t operational.
Today, the phone apps tells you, the different types of chargers, speeds, if they are operational. The apps tells you which location is nearest to you and if the chargers are in use. I have many charging apps on my phone, including Chargepoint, EVgo, and Electrify America.
Sacramento to Fresno (Departure 4pm)
I left Sacremento with an estimated range of 150 miles on the battery. Fresno is 162 miles. I hit some stop and go traffic in along the way. This is great for EV’s because every time you slow down or hit brakes it generates power to the battery, by the time I entered Stockton, I had an additional 14 miles. Like a dino car, the faster you drive the more energy you use. I tried to keep it below 70, but I was weak and 60 seemed like walking. There was an accident in Ripon and the stop and go was good for an additional five miles.
Nearing Madera, (20 miles north of Fresno) the speedometer indicated I had 22 miles left. I stopped at the first Wal Mart and plugged into the Electrify America 150k charger, the machine indicated it could replenish the battery to 80% in 65 minutes. I liked that the Electrify was fast but at 43cent per kwh was expensive. I charged the Bolt for 15 minutes and it added 68 miles. the cost was 7.74. I attributed the high cost to the time 625pm.
There was no drama what so ever on this trip,despite the 107 outside,the Bolt was chilly inside. When my sister saw the car, she said, your not taking me anywhere in that thang!!!
Fresno to Sacramento (Departure 1:38am)
Gig car share offers free charging, you must call the location to turn the charger on, I was on hold for 20 minutes with the service waiting to the machine to be turned on. The charger was an older EVgo charger at the Fashion Fair Shopping Center. Charging time to from 20% to 80% was 80 minutes. Ive learned that most ev owners charge their car at night often programming their charger to come on late when the electicity rates are lower. I usually charge my car while I’m having a meal or shopping. This wasn’t the case in late night Fabulous Fresno.
Charging time and range is one of the issues of owning an ev. Some of the newer charging stations offer fast charging, however this will have little effect on an older ev. For most homeowners this isnt a major issue. But if your live in a condo or an apartment it might be challeging. On a cross country drive, charging time is everything. My Bolt was an 2019. The newer Bolts are reportedly 10% faster.
For comparision, Ford says new the Mustang Mach-E equipped with the 98.8-kWh extended-range battery will charge from 10 to 80 percent in 45 minutes. Compared to the Bolts 80 min. Newer cars promise faster times.
The other issue is range. Once again, this is an area where Tesla is currently superior to the other ev’s. There are many uber expensive, European Ev’s that cant match the lowly Bolt’s range.
There was no traffic on highway 99 north. As a result, I needed charging again in Elk Grove, a suburb of Sacramento, where I stopped at another Electrify America charging center. I was suprised to find the charge at 4.43am was the same as peak time in Madera. Chargepoint and some of the other charging stations charge you the rate based of the time of day.
Technology will bring down the price of Ev’s. The battery is far and away the most expensive component on the Ev. Ten years ago, batteries sold for more than $1,100/kWh. Today batteries are nearly $100 per kilowatt hour.
I’m considering buying a new car, for my basic needs a Chevy Bolt would work. Its affordable, and if I understand Consumer Reports ratings, the Bolt is GM’s most reliable car. The only caveat, is occasionaly I drive, cross country and 259 miles isnt enough. Tesla offers a range of over 400 miles in their Model S, at nearly 80K my lotto ticket says no.
As of this writing, gasoline in Sacramento is averaging $3.79 a gallon. With an electric car ,there are many businesses that will allow you to charge your EV for free. The reason is simple. Currently EV’s are pricy, the people that own them tend to be more affluent than the average dino car driver. As a result, there are many businesses that will allow EV owner to charge their vehicles for free.
As to what car I will buy? The Chevy Bolt has been refreshed for 2022.
However, I have to drive to the south, so a dino car is possible. Details this Fall