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ON SALE NOW

by Stuart W.    
Torah from Dixie Staff Writer    

Finally, the day had come. Today Dave would purchase his first car. He had seen an ad in the paper advertising an old D'lorean for only $2,000 at a place called Joe's Used Cars. With optimism in his eyes and his checkbook in his pocket, Dave walked into the building.

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Finally, the day had come. Today Dave would purchase his first car. He had seen an ad in the paper advertising an old D'lorean for only $2,000 at a place called Joe's Used Cars. With optimism in his eyes and his checkbook in his pocket, Dave walked into the building.

"Hi, I'm Dave Goldstein. I called before about the D'lorean." "How ya doing, Dave? I'm Joe Gaberta," said the salesman, as he wrapped his arm around Dave's shoulder. "Y'know, I could tell when you walked in that you were a nice guy. I like you already." The salesman seemed a little strange, but Dave was confident. He had dealt with salesmen before. "I have the $2,000," David said. "So if we could get on with it, I'd appreciate it." "Hey, no problem, Mr. Goldberg," said the salesman. "I'll get you out of here in no time. Here are the papers. Just sign on the dotted line and you'll have a beautiful 1980 D'lorean for only $2,000."

"I'd like to see the car first, please," insisted Dave, growing more and more impatient. "And the name's Goldstein." "Oh, sure, how careless of me. Come with me," the salesman said as they walked outside. "Here she is. Let's take her for a test drive."

The car looked fairly nice. . .for a Yugo. Dave started the car and pulled out into traffic. The engine coughed a lot and stalled once, and the radio sounded like a microwave, but for only $2,000 it was a great deal. Dave pulled back into the lot and went inside the store.

"OK, I'm ready to sign." "Great! Here you go," said the salesman. "Just sign on the dotted line." Dave looked at a page full of words so small he could barely read them and said, "I can't read this, sir." "Oh, don't worry about it," said the salesman. "It's just legal nonsense. Just sign, Mr. Silverstein."

Luckily, Dave had a magnifying glass in his pocket and he used it to read the fine print. The principle cost was $2,000, but after taxes, service fees, and a plethora of other costs including "Joe's Vacation Fund," the total amount was close to $15,000! Dave was furious. "What are you trying to pull here?!" he shouted.

"C'mon, Mr. Rosenstein, did you really expect to pay only $2,000 for a beauty like that? Now sign here."

Dave was faced with a tough decision. What should he do? a) Let out his wrath and end up in jail. b) Destroy the D'lorean and end up in jail. c) Count to 10 and quietly walk out, resolving to warn everyone not to buy a car from Joe.

In this week's Torah portion, our forefather Abraham has to go to a Hittite named Ephron in order to purchase a plot of land in which to bury his beloved wife Sarah. At first, Ephron seems to befriend Abraham, declaring that to a friend like him, he would give the land for free. In the end, however, Ephron's true colors come out, and Abraham ends up having to pay the exorbitant sum of 400 silver shekels for the plot of land. However, Abraham remains calm the whole time, not once losing his patience or his temper. Abraham understood that it was pointless to get angry. Firstly, he knew that anger would not accomplish anything. Secondly, Abraham was a servant of Hashem, and someone who serves Hashem knows that everything that happens to a person is Hashem's will.

Our sages say that "The one who becomes angry experiences the fires of Gehinnom (Purgatory)" (Talmud Tractate Nedarim 22a). Why would we want to go through Gehinnom if we do not have to? We should follow Abraham's example and work on becoming calmer, more pleasant people. The best way to do this is by becoming a servant of Hashem, by learning His Torah and performing His mitzvot.

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