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Life is a bunch of upgrades. My first car was a 1957 Dodge. It had been my parents’ brand new car in ’57, then went to my sister for a couple of years, and finally was presented to me when I turned 16 in 1964. Now, for those of you who weren’t around in the ‘60s, the ’57 Dodge was not the cool car of that era. A ’57 Chevy or Ford, that was the ride to have. Still, I was glad just to have something to drive back then, but I was always looking to upgrade. One of my friends had an ultra-clean 1957 Ford, at least it was until his younger brother crashed it trying to retrieve a cigarette he’d dropped between his legs. I bought it for storage charges and set about rebuilding its smashed front end. That was my first car upgrade.

kimber25.jpgMy first apartment when I started my career in law enforcement was in a kind of rundown complex, but its $120-per-month rent included utilities, when Fresno’s summers had many days exceeding 100 degrees, seemed a bargain until I had to bust my neighbors for growing marijuana on their patio. I soon upgraded to a nicer place. Fortunately, I’ve got the same wife I started out with 30 years ago. This type of upgrade can be pretty expensive.

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Life is a bunch of upgrades. My first car was a 1957 Dodge. It had…