Monday, October 18, 2010

The Final Adventure of the Staycation

The weekend was somewhat hectic. As I mentioned in Saturday’s post, I helped The Most Awesome Person I Know to move out of one home and into another. The bulk of that work was completed that day. Yesterday morning I received a call requesting my help in moving one last item. The refrigerator.

This was a beast of a refrigerator. However, I feel that it was nothing compared to the armoire that was taken from the second floor of the house to the first floor of the new place. I know it’s a bit off topic, but let me tell you a little about that armoire. There were three of us. Well, two and a half if you consider how ridiculously pitiful my strength was by that time of the evening. For a while it looked as if we weren’t going to be able to carry the thing down the stairs. So we got the idea to slide a rug underneath it, then allow it to have a controlled slide down the stairs. Once we got this little project started, I had flashes of two people being crushed under this thing as it lost control down the stairs while the third person, at the top, watched in horror. So in the end, we decided that lifting and moving one step at a time was the best bet. Two and a half men—1; Armoire—0.

Back to the fridge. So we got it moved out of the house and it really wasn’t that complicated. Turns out they wouldn’t need me to get it back out of the trailer at the new place, so I was released from my indentured servitude and went back home. However, I was promised a hot lunch if I was interested, which, of course, I was. That’s one of my rules: Never turn down free food.

But plans, they change. I got home, parked my car, and went upstairs to my apartment. I ate a bagel to hold me until lunch. I laid down on the couch watching a movie. This turned out to be the bad idea. I woke several hours later. I had missed two phone calls inviting me to lunch and missed a text from The Most Awesome Person I Know asking if I would be able to make it over for some television viewing. I slept for over three hours. I must have been tired.

I may have missed lunch, but I was certainly ready to sit down and watch The Amazing Race, a show which, until this weekend, I thought I might be tough enough to actually do someday. No, it’ll never happen. So I got ready to head over to TMAPIK’s new home. I went to my car. I got in. I turned the ignition and got nothing. Suddenly it registered that the dome light never came on when I opened the door. The battery was obviously dead.

So I called TMAPIK back and let her know that I wouldn’t be making it for the show and to enjoy it without me. She offered to come over this morning once the kids were safely at school to help me jump the car. Here’s where the adventure really begins.

She arrived here just before 10AM. We connected the jumper cables, making sure we were doing it just right. She started her car. I attempted to start mine. Again… nothing. So then we Googled “how to jump-start a car” just to make sure we were getting it right. I may be a guy, but that doesn’t mean I’m exactly knowledgeable when it comes to the automobile. I wish I knew more than I do. I really should’ve taken auto shop back in high school.

Oh well, we can’t live in the past. My ignorance is where we are today. The internet informed us that we were doing it right all along. So she took me to Advance where I purchased a new battery. Now, I’ve never installed a car battery before. But in buying the battery, I made it seem like I was very confident and knew what I was doing. The saleswoman didn’t ask if I knew what I was doing, she just rang me up and sent me on my way. But my thinking is: they do it for free at Advance, so it can’t be too difficult.

We got the battery back to my car and I began unhooking wires from the old, dead battery. I went to lift the battery out of the car and it wouldn’t budge. Two guys from the apartment complex came over and they tried. Nothing. So at least I know it’s not just my wussitude this time. Turns out, there was a bracket on the side that was holding the stupid thing in place. I got that moved and eventually got the batteries switched.

Praise the Lord, the car started right up. I went to put the dead husk of a battery into my trunk so I could return it to Advance and get a $12 refund on the new battery, and when I did, I noticed that the brake lights were on. There was no one in the car pressing the brake pedal. This was not a good sign.

One more thing.

So I went to Advance. I got my $12. And I asked the guy if he knew what that problem could be and if he knew of someone who could fix it for cheap. He sent me, as luck would have it, right across the street to a Merchant’s Tire & Auto. In about 45 minutes they had it fixed and it cost less than $50. Better than I thought it would be.

So that’s my last adventure of the staycation. I’m not saying I’m ready to go back to work. I’m just ready to not have my car fall apart anymore.

1 comment:

  1. Interesting. I have a '99 Ford Escort, and I have the same problem. Mine's usually solved by a quick tap upward. When it first happened, it was so bad (and I was too broke to fix it), that whenever I parked the car, I had a lasso that I would tie around the break pedal and knot around my steering wheel, pulling the pedal upward. One morning, I was so out of it, I slipped the lasso off the pedal but forgot to untie it from my wheel. Turning the wheel to pull into my work garage, the rope got wrapped around the steering column -- breaking loose the plastic covering, taking away my steering ability, and snapping off my turn signal, while I narrowly avoided hitting a City vehicle. And that's the story of why my car hates my face.