Image credit: Raphael Orlove

As with everything else in life, the narratives of our automotive relationships have ups and downs. We hope that all of our choices will work out well for us, but since we’re not gifted with foresight, we usually don’t know if something will turn out poorly until it’s too late.

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Today we ask: what is the worst automotive decision you have ever made? Car-buying, driving, wrenching, whatever you like. There’s so much potential for bad decisions when cars are involved.

For me, every bad automotive decision has involved driving through Connecticut. Without fail, there has always been some kind of terrible traffic jam or horrific crash that resulted in a terrible traffic jam. I don’t know why.

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Our executive features editor Tom Scocca tells the story of putting a new used engine in a beloved ‘84 Honda Civic after the oil light didn’t light and the old, good engine burned up on the Mass Pike. He’d had a mechanic do the swap and was in denial that a car he’d loved had been destroyed.

“And so,” Tom wrote, “it soldiered on, undead, a few years longer. It wasn’t even that the replacement engine didn’t work. It wasn’t right.”

Join us in pouring one out for Tom’s poor Civic. And when you’re done with that, tell me what the worst automotive decision you’ve ever made was.