In many cases, we don't choose our first cars. Our first cars are sometimes chosen for us as a sort of hand-me-down. The great Mercedes diesel sedan that got me through so much of high school was not necessarily up for a trip to college and, therefore, the family car shuffle resulted in an early 1990's Escort hatchback loaded to the gills with posters, clothing, computer peripherals and hope. But mostly computer peripherals. It was a great car for what it was; the stock five-speed transmission providing great mileage and a chance to pretend that I was driving something nicer than an Escort. Being the basest of base models, the car didn't come with a radio or a mirror on the passenger side. Still, I loved it.

That's why I was saddened to discover that, after having temporarily swapped for another family vehicle, my beloved Innes (named for Innes Ireland) had been bartered away to someone who agreed to paint the house for the car. I'm not saying it wasn't a good deal (the A/C was going, the paint was fading and the interior was fraying), but I had a lot of great memories in that car. So if that guy is here I hope this was your best deal. For everyone else, share your LeMons-worthy stories of cheap cars, wild swaps and dumb luck.