18 February, 1999Mr. Dick Bilyeu
Dear Mr. Bilyeu:
You don’t know me, but my name is Liz Elfendahl. You’re handling an order for a brand-new Porsche for my boyfriend, Mike Blaszczak.
I’m not sure what’s going on at your dealership, Mr. Bilyeu, but four months seems like an awful long time to wait for a car. Especially one that’s so expensive! Mike is deeply anticipating the arrival of his new car, and I’m proud of him. He’s very young, and he’s worked hard applying his talents all his life. But now he’s spent over $800 on books—including a set of factory service manuals—to placate himself while waiting. He’s special-ordered four different sets of Torx screwdrivers, and mutters randomly about how the Germans have a conspiracy to sell more tools.
I’m happy for Mike because he has wanted to own this kind of car since he was a teenager. But I’m afraid that it’s all he talks about these days. When he first placed the order, he was quite excited. Things have just gotten worse over time—now, the car is all he talks about. And he’ll mention it to anybody! He recently kept us stuck at the Albertson’s checkout line for ten minutes before I could tear him away from the cashier. The manager, as you can imagine, wasn’t too pleased about the matter.
On a recent trip we took together, he kept elbowing me as he practiced "getting sixth". Since he’s never owned a car with a six-speed gearbox before, he’s afraid he’ll miss shifts and look like a fool. (Somehow, to him, that doesn’t seem quite as bad as waving your arm around and wiggling his feet in a crowded airplane.) This just doesn’t sit well with me.
The recent delay in delivery has set back our relationship quite a bit. Mr. Bilyeu, I beg of you to do everything in your power to make sure Mike gets his car as soon as possible. Now that he’s started making "flat six noises" from the back of his throat at all hours of the day—ruining many a romantic moment, I might add—it’s becoming increasingly hard to live with him.
Please, Mr. Bilyeu, do what you can to help me. Quickly!