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  the five smart ownership stages  
1. how it all began 2. the reservation 3. the configuration 4. "congratulations" 5. "come and get it"

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  takin' care of business
"come and get it"
itibiti gets striped
itibiti thoughts
itibiti thoughts

posted: 05.13.08
well, we've had itibiti for 13 days now, and i gotta tell 'ya...driving that little smart car is a total blast!! we received the state title and vanity plate just yesterday (check out my itibiti plate gallery). the first time i took it out for a spin with the new plates on, some yelled while i was stopped at a light..."nice plates!".

mission accomplished!

we've got around 600 miles on it, and i've pretty much settled in with the transmission. i use manual mode, running through the gears myself, while my wife prefers to leave it in automatic. she has no complaints, and i get to manually shift so it feels more responsive to it's doing what i want it to do. i sometimes find myself driving around town in 4th gear, though, because it just feels right if you're going around 40-45mph. i've probably been driving it more aggressively than most, and have been consistently getting 33mpg. i keep telling myself "when the newness wears off, i'll use auto mode, so my average mpg will rise", but i doubt that will happen anytime soon. i bought this car to have fun with, not to try to squeeze the last bit of gas out of it. if i average 30-35mpg...i'll be very pleased! after all, my dodge ram pick-up only get around 11mpg!

neal rubin writes a column for the detroit news, and yesterday he wrote of "orphaning" the smart car he had on order (see here). he's written of the smart before (see here), mentioning that he was thinking of orphaning it, but you can tell he is still a fan. his configuration was virtually the same as itibiti's, so i dropped him a quick e-mail. it went like this:


It sounds like my wife and I have what you passed on. Red Passion convertible, heated black leather seats, anti-theft alarm, rain-sensing wipers, tinted windows, pinstriping and much, much more. We picked it up May 1st (Samantha performed the delivery, by the way) and are having a ball driving it!

The plates say “itibiti” (get it?), and I have started a website dedicated to it. I carry a camera in the back, and whenever someone starts asking me questions about it, I ask them to pose with itibiti, then post the picture on my site under “itibiti friends”. People get a kick out of it. After all, they’re already smiling when they approach the car, so I just take their picture. No one has turned me down yet!

The address is

I think you’ll enjoy it, as you sound to me like you’re still a smart car fan at heart.   If you ever want to take a ride in what could have been, just let me know. I’ll be there for you, my friend!  We smart lovers have to stick together.

Maybe you’ll become an “itibiti friend”, too!

Thanks for your time...


he replied:


Love the car, love the Web site. Great job.

I live in Farmington Hills, so I might well see you driving which case I'll pull you over and we can take a picture.

With all the extras you've put into it, you might well own the most expensive and luxurious smart cars in America. That's a nice distinction, as far as I'm concerned.


what a great guy! i just thought i'd share that with you all.
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itibiti gets striped

posted: 05.09.08
rick hewitt dropped by today to give itibiti some extra personality...pinstripes! you can see the whole process here. karen and i had several ideas in mind and, with 25 years experience under his belt, rick had some great ones of his own.

it's always a pleasure to watch someone who is a master of their it a pro ball player, a surgeon or musician, i find them all fascinating to observe. rick is no exception. after all...he knew von dutch for god's sake!

e-mail me and i'll let you know what he charged. karen and i both thought he was very reasonable. she mentioned it was worth the price just to watch him in action. i totally agree!

he can be reached at 248.363.4166. tell him itibiti sent you.
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"come and get it"

posted: 05.06.08
trust me...the last 5 days have been a friggin' blur!

we were supposed to pick up itibiti saturday, may 3rd. but when i went to the dealership thursday, the 1st, to give them the money, shane told me it was ready to go right then!!

i called my wife at work and told her itibiti was ready to come home! we decided to meet back at the house so i could leave my truck, and she proceeded to shift her schedule around so she could leave her office for a few hours. she picked me up, and off we went to get our new smart car!

samantha did a great job with the delivery process, and i drove off with itibiti around 1:45pm. i had asked my wife if she wanted to be the first to drive it, but she, knowing how excited i was, politely declined. that is why i love her so much...she knows me so well!!

we went south on telegraph road from the dealership, all the way to 12 mile...probably 6 or 7 miles, with her watching the reaction of other drivers.

i'm telling was so much fun!

we parted and i went west on the 696 to the 5 north exit, then to 14 mile where i got off to go home. i was opening and closing the top, experimenting with the transmission and just having a great old time! on the way, i called nancy hewitt, to see if she could come over right away to do her window tinting magic. She said she'd be there in 20 minutes.

well, here I am, 346 itibiti miles later, and I finally found the time to sit my butt down and post the good news with all my new smart friends...

...but i'd rather be out driving itibiti! in fact i think i will!!

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takin' care of business

posted: 05.01.08
i went to smart center bloomfield today to pay for itibiti!
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