Thursday, February 25, 2010

amateur hour

When we last left the Hollywood Librarian, she was riding in a tow truck. The driver was right – it was expensive. The auto shop estimate was $3400, but estimates don’t include sales tax.

I blew out the engine. “Oil change” was on my Google calendar for Wednesday, and the engine went on Tuesday. The bookmobile was a couple of months overdue and its innards were (apparently) bone dry. Amateur move? Yes. Do I know better? Yes. And was it 100% my fault? Yes.

I am quick to abuse my car, I think, because I resent that it was forced upon me by this city. That attitude isn’t going to get me very far though. I’ve learned an expensive lesson.

I did not drop this bag of money without pause. A new car was out of the question because I am not interested in car payments and increased insurance. I considered buying a new used car for a comparable price. I looked at Craigslist and quickly became anxious. Though my purple Saturn is an eyesore, I know this car: one previous owner, my mother, and only 80,000 miles. Classic devil you know vs. the devil you don’t know, and I chose the former. My mother generously gave me that car. Now I’ve bought it.

In other news, Fight Crew lost the game on the 13th, but we did it with panache. At some point in the 3rd quarter, we were down by nearly 40 points, and we came back to lose by 10. This girl had a solid game, scoring 26 points, but it wasn’t enough. Oh well. The season is young.

Photo by Colin Young-Wolf/LA Weekly

I’m flying to Oklahoma City tomorrow for a game against another banked track league, the Red Dirt Rebellion Roller Girls. What's to do in Oklahoma besides play roller derby? I hear it's snowing there. I haven’t seen snow in years -- not since 2000 when Tony and I drove to Flagstaff to pick up a Volvo gifted from his brother. I think there was snow melting on the side of the I-17, but we never got close enough to touch it.

I’m not sure what to do with snow. Maybe I will bury myself in the stuff to soothe my nagging aches and pains.

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

car woes

My car almost exploded on the freeway yesterday. It had been making a funny noise for the past couple of weeks, and I'd planned to take it in, well, today actually. As I drove home from work, bookmobile heavy with groceries, the unexplained sound escalated from "funny" to "assault rifle." When smoke began to billow out from under the hood, I felt compelled to turn on my hazards and pull over.

Things I am grateful for: My AAA membership.

Cars barreled past, rattling me, when I stepped from my vehicle onto the shoulder. This probably isn't very safe, I thought, as I popped the hood. I looked inside and saw what appeared to be an engine. Hmmm. The colors looked right, nothing was oozing lava or pus and there were no visible signs of a silverfish infestation. So, I got back inside and waited for the tow truck. I listened to an episode of the Moth on my Ipod and pulled a bran muffin from a grocery bag. I ate half. Thank God I didn't starve to death in the 20 minutes I waited for a tow. I'm good in a crisis.

When the tow driver arrived, he started my car. It still sounded like an assault rifle unloading. He winced.

"What do you think it is?" I asked.

"I don't know, but it sounds expensive."

He towed my car to a mechanic a few blocks from my apartment, and I'm still waiting on the diagnosis.

In happier news, my team is skating its first game of the 2010 season and you should come. It would cheer me up to see your shining face in the crowd, dear anonymous reader. Tickets will sell out in advance, so get yours soon.