Wednesday, June 15, 2011

drei hundert vierzig

My car repair is going to set me back $340. Yes, Dear Reader: three hundred forty fucking dollars. As it turns out, the VTEC solenoid is indeed the problem. In addition, the mechanic saw that my oil was "low and dirty" (much like my character), so he took the liberty of doing an oil change. Assuming the oil change costs about $20, and the solenoid is $200, that puts the labor charge at about $120.

"When was the last time you had your oil checked?" the car dude asked.

"When I went to see you guys!" I answered. "I had a coupon for a free oil change!"

"That was back in February," came the response, "and you've gone 3800 miles since then."

That made sense: I've been commuting at least 90 miles per day since mid-March, and most of that commute has been done at an average speed of 75-80 miles per hour. Little wonder that the poor Honda Civic is left gasping and problem-ridden.

The dude told me that the solenoid wouldn't be in until tomorrow (Wednesday), but that the replacement wouldn't take long. I asked whether the car would be ready in time for me to get to work, and he said, "It should be."

So the plan for tomorrow is this: I'll leave my apartment at 11:30AM, walk up to the auto center, and arrive a bit before 1PM. Ideally, the car will be ready, which means I can vomit out a pile of cash (thanks, Dr. Steve et al.), drive back home, shower and change, and be out the door again before 2:10PM, which is my absolute cutoff time. (We have to be at YB by 3:10, twenty minutes before the 3:30 start time, as part of a required planning period.)

Since tomorrow is also my buddy Mike's 42nd birthday, I'll be trundling over to his place in Fredericksburg after I'm done with work. We'll kick back for a bit, I'll hand over some humble gifticles, and then I'll head on home, trailing a huge, Dubya-style "MISSION ACCOMPLISHED" banner.



John said...

I'm not sure how old your car is, but I can't imagine why 3800 miles between oil changes is excessive. I change mine every 5000, whether it needs it or not. The only folks pushing that 3 months/3000 miles meme are the ones doing the oil changes.

Of course, if your oil was in fact low and dirty, that could be indicative of some other problem...

John said...

On a completely unrelated topic, I came across a cartoon today that made me think of you: