Me super excited about repairing the second car of the day.
“Come on, you #@A%*$# … this is really starting to #$&#ing piss me off!”
The woman walking into O’Reilly Auto Parts looked at me as if she’d seen my mug on “America’s Most Wanted.” Of course, I didn’t realize she was there. I was just trying to fix the girlfriend’s 2003 Mitsubishi Shitbox. Such is my life with vehicles.
One couple. Two cars. Two replaced batteries. On the same day. You’ve got to be kidding me! The odds of that have to be a billion to one. Then again, the odds of me actually fixing said cars without destroying something are about 100 trillion to one.
This all started Thursday night. First, the Kansas Turnpike tested my patience with that 20-minutes-per-mile stretch between markers 207 and 211. I’ve yet to see a construction worker on this stretch. Seems like you might need a body or two to repave a highway.
To top it off, somebody at the KTA thought it clever to post signs like this …
"We know it's a pain with only one lane." Cute. Very cute.
Who thinks this is a good idea? Tease pissed-off people — seated in two-ton vehicles – whose trips to their salvation (home) are being delayed by unnecessary road construction. I can only assume the KTA’s marketing team consists of Nipsy Russell (or at least the ghost of Nipsy Russell) and the geniuses who put together this campaign …
Twenty-seven hours later, I’m close to my exit for home, minutes from bliss. The Shana calls … can you come jump-start my car? No big deal. We get her car started and head home, her kids in tow. Once home, however, she discovers the car won’t start again.
Instead of doing what I should have done (buy a battery that night), I opt for dinner and bed (and blogging about wooing said Shana) and plan to fix the car Friday morning.
Now, Shana gets up insanely early to prep the kids. We’re talking 5 a.m. Her alarm would only be more annoying if Chuck Norris jumped out of the clock and roundhouse kicked you in the face.
To make matters worse, she’s not getting up to shut the damn thing off. As she documents here on her blog, she’s forgotten she has kids and thinks the alarm is set for me. I mutter, “Shouldn’t you get that … you have the kids today.” (While she’s thinking, no, asshole, that’s your alarm, I’m thinking get off your lazy ass and turn that bitch off).
Because I don’t trust her car, I volunteer to drive the Shitbox to work and let her drive my equally awesome Chevy Impala Shitbox. About 30 minutes later, as I’m pulling in for gas, the Mishitbisi dies (:08 mark) …
One good thing about KTA is their roadside assistance. It’s free. They jump-started the car. That’s the only bone I’m throwing KTA today. I decided at this point that I’m going to take care of Shana’s car. I’d rather not break down at every stop light in Topeka. I’m funny that way.
I managed to get to O’Reilly’s, get the battery tested (“It’s dead” … no shit). In the midst of yanking the old battery out and putting the new one in, a bolt decides it simply doesn’t want to come off. As some of you know, the Webbs have legit tempers. Hard not to when you’re Irish, German and Cherokee. With maturity, that has improved drastically. It takes A LOT to ignite the fuse these days …
Once the rant was over, I managed to get the new battery in the car and headed for work … until Shana calls again. This time, she’s walking, yes, walking, Molly to school. That’s right, MY Shitbox wouldn’t start after she dropped Brody off at school. All I could really do was laugh. So much for work, and I HATE missing work.
Back to Kansas City, past the Nipsy Russell signs, praying that Shana’s Shitbox doesn’t break down again. An hour later, I arrive to fix my Shitbox. The funny thing is, Shana and I are smiling, not taking things too seriously. Such is life these days …
Shana and I in St. Louis during July.
Fortunately, the Shitbox starts right up and we head home. I managed to get some work done and spend some time with Shana, who had the day off, before taking my POS to the auto parts store for testing. Sure enough, 12.8 volts on the battery. It’s supposed to be over 14 …
Two batteries, two cars, same couple, one day. How does that happen? Nonetheless, I buy another battery and return home to swap out the 1947 model in my car. During the installation, it appears Dr. Zhivago designed the engine. Who in the hell makes it difficult to get a battery out of car?
A shade under a decade later, the battery is in place, both cars are running … and it’s time for me to run three miles and work out. Such is life. And it’s still a pretty damn good one.