Does this guy get to experience it in other areas of his life, or is chronic dissatisfaction just related to vehicles?
I dunno. Just got married, having a baby, bought a house but...
You know, we live in a very expensive place and we work at a company that doesn't pay well. And we are in an industry that isn't doing so great. So...
If we lived somewhere else, we'd have enough money to spend it on "whatever" and save for retirement. Bigger houses, cars, boats, whatever.
But here, you have to scrimp and save to get a small, shitty, old home in a crappy school district.
If we lived in the Bay Area, yeah, the housing situation would be worse but pay would be a whole lot better.
If we were in a different industry, our incomes would not be stagnant.
I don't have a feel for how happy vs. dissatisfied he is. But I do see how he compares himself to "everyone else" - people who inherited money, people in software, people who work in finance, people who live elsewhere, people who bought at a better time, etc. I guess it's a mid-30's crisis, when you realize that you aren't "all that" like you used to be. You know, the whole American way of work hard and succeed and be the best. But...there are a lot of factors in there that are hard to control. (Like, who knew semiconductors was going to fall apart decades ago?)