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Bruce, the Car Salesman

carsalesmanBy Jennifer Hao

A car salesman, a car salesman? A car salesman! That is the one of the most loathed professions in our society.

Every time I go out for lunch passing through that car dealership,  I would look over that row of salesmen standing in front of the showroom windows, white shirts gleaming in the sun. This phalanx of salesmen looked so predatory, and always made me think:  ‘No, I do not want to be their victim!’

One morning, my 1987 Toyota broke down on the highway. I was so scared. What if someone tried to rob me now? I did not want to take any risk in the dark, early morning on the highway. I had to get a new car, so I went to that Toyota close to my work.

Enter salesman Bruce.

Bruce is a short man. His mouth is very big, and his rich, dark brown hair stands up straight. He walks with two feet outward. To be honest with you, he is a man who even the ugliest woman would not want to marry.

“What type of car you are looking for?” He asked.

“Toyota Corolla.”  “Here we have so many Corollas. Eh, people like you drive Corollas?  You should at least drive a Camry!  Oh, I saw you have children’s stickers on your car. You must have children.  You need a safer car. Safety is very important.” As he said this, he nodded his head at me.

After much conversation, I finally exited the dealership, driving a four wheel drive Toyota Rev4.  My new car was tall, so I could see the traffic jam in the distance.  The color of my car changes; it is metallic green under the sun, grayish under the shade. Power window, automatic lock of the door; auto turn off the lights, auto cruise, I even have a moon roof!  It was really cool. I was so happy with this new car.

Suddenly I woke up in the middle of the night, still excited, but shocked:  Oh, my gosh, I am going to pay 2.5 times the car payment that I initially planned to pay?  By then, I felt that I was fooled by Bruce, the car salesman. I was a victim.
Time flies. Several years later, I got into a car accident—my car was hit badly from the back. The insurance company paid me $6500 for repairing it. However, I did not repair the car, as my car could still be driven. Later on, my car showed CVS signs. The engine started making loud noises, and the oil couldn’t be changed. I went to Sunnyvale Toyota. Repairing it would cost $5200.  If I traded it in, I would get $2500 only.

So I called Bruce, complaining about the car he sold to me some years ago. He told me he needed another car. Maybe he could look at my car and buy it.

When I saw him this time, his rich dark, brown hair was no longer straight. He was bald, with a yellow-white faces without any blood sign. I showed him the CVS light and had him drive the car.  I did not reveal anything about Sunnyvale Toyota. He offered me $6500 in cash!

This is $4000 more than Toyota Sunnyvale offered me. To prevent him from returning the car back to me after he found more problems, I wrote down a simple contract stating that the car would be “Sold As Is”, which we both signed.

I went out, feeling that I had just accomplished a great deal. Oh my, I could be a car saleswoman. Oh, No, was I better than that now bald, ugly looking car salesman?

Another day, as I went to change my car engine oil, the service managers talked about Bruce, the car salesman. I learned that Bruce had later stage of the cancer and dying in hospital.

Feeling guilty about the car I sold to a dying person, I went to the hospital to visit him with a $4000 check.

There was that bald Bruce. He seemed happy when he saw me. He told me he was confident that he could be cured. He had to pay for his daughter’s college tuitions and fees. His son was a future prominent baseball player. He needed to pay for coaching fees to have his son well trained and successful. Most of all he was worried that his wife had never worked. He had to earn money to pay for the living expenses of his wife.

I presented him with a $4000 check of “cheated” money to him. He refused to take it and said that car was sold “as is”. From this dying person, Bruce, the car salesman, I learned of his fairness, his integrity, his responsibility, and his incomparable love for his family.

Bruce, the car salesman died a couple of weeks later, as a result of choking on food. He was such a good father, caring husband, and good car salesman. Most of all, he has a loving heart.

About Georgia Han

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