Monday, May 6, 2013

Devil May Car Care





I had to bring the car in for service over the weekend.

Nothing serious; just normal maintenance plus the yearly inspection.

At least that’s always the hope.

But when you routinely keep and drive your cars across multiple decades, like Z and I tend to do…you never know.

Hey, if it ain’t broke don’t fix it…I mean, literally.

Oh sure, somewhere down the road you’re occasionally going to lose a wheel or something…again, literally…but that’s what tow trucks are for.

However, there’s no getting around the required inspection…and you should change the oil, sometimes as often as once a year…or at least check it.

So I brought it in over the weekend, and crossed my fingers.

One of life’s golden rules to happiness and peace of mind is, once you find a good garage, stick with it.

Don’t worry about price, customer service or even garage d├ęcor, such as what calendar girls they have displayed behind the counter…trust is worth its weight in gold.

Of course I have no idea how much trust weighs, but I do know that a license plate light bulb is going to run you 75 buckos, and sooner, but probably later, you’ll get a call that your car is ready…when they need the garage space for poker night…and hey, Miss Rheingold, 65 was a keeper…even if she actually was 65 at the time.

I’ve been going to this one particular service place for close to 25 years, now, and all the guys know me by name.

Of course it’s not actually my name, but I kind of like being Alice, every now and them

I envision Alice as a free thinker, with authority issues.  He knows he only needs to fill his tank with regular gas, but insist on using premium.

But no special oil additives for Alice…“Just top ‘er off buddy and I’ll be on my way….”

He’s just that reckless when it comes to cars, is Alice.

Luckily, this time I got off easy; but like I said, you never know.


The duct tape seemed to be holding on the right rear tire so I only needed to replace the other three.

Last time it was all four.


The brakes were good…as long as I drove under 20 mph and had at least the length of a football field to stop.

The headlights are like new again once he replaced the bulb…or I should really say, head-light…the other one had a short in it or something. But, like they told me, it was lucky I had two to begin with.

And the transmission oil was a nice healthy brown, so I’ll take that…I guess.

What do I know?

And that’s just the thing; why I say being able to trust your car service place is worth its weight in gold.

I mean, let’s face it…most of us don’t really know what our mechanic is saying when he’s explaining why he needs to replace the Differmometer after he adjusts the Hacenbadafortran coupling…and while he’s in there he might as well change out the amatfenature module, because if you wait until you really need it replaced, you could end up spending more, not to mention risk driving without a gas tank, which, to be honest, is just like throwing good money after bad.

So you hate to do it, but you have no choice…you say, “Do what you have to do…and is that coffee fresh?”

And then everyone has a good laugh and the boys behind the counter say, “Alice, you’re a scream!”

Before long, or way, way, way too long, the work is done and they’re processing your credit card payment…while, at the same time, looking through the new boat catalogue.

“Now I can finally get that 55 foot cruiser, with the mahogany decking, I’ve had my eye on,” they tell you, while you high five and congratulate them before heading on your way.

Like I said, while it’s not a day I look forward to, having your car serviced does lead to some peace of mind knowing that you can once again tune in that FM station that was giving you so much trouble, for so long.

That is, when that new sound, reminiscent of a cat in heat, stops for a few seconds....






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