Cleaning house physically, emotionally, and mentally.

It was one of those days.  Apparently I left my car lights on today. So when I and a friend went to leave work and have dinner,  it was not to be.  But here’s what I learned about my car today.

  • If the car battery is dead, the little car remote (you know, the little thingy  you punch to lock or unlock your car) doesn’t work.
  • At this point it helps to know your license plate number. You may just be trying to open up someone else’s car. Yes, this was indeed my first thought. One of the guys I work with sometimes drives his wife’s car, which is exactly like mine. So it pays to leave some personal junk in the car in case you don’t know your license plate number. That way you can look inside and say “whew, this isn’t my car; I don’t have 2 car seats in the back.” Or you could say “crap, this is my car because I recognize the 10 books on the floor in the back. And double-crap because something is wrong.”
  • Not only does the remote not work, but I had to unlock the car with the key! OMG – what is this world coming to? And the buttons on the door to unlock the rest of the doors don’t work either!
  • No one carries jumper cables in their car. Every one assumes someone else will have them. This is not true; never assume!
  • If you have an automatic transmission, you cannot shift to neutral so you can push the car out of the parking spot to allow for another car to get close enough to connect jumper cables. So back into a parking spot to achieve easy access to the battery. Good heavens — is this some kind of conspiracy to prevent unauthorized car movement?  Good thing the Von Trapp family did not have an automatic when they were pushing their car out of their estate while attempting to escape Nazi rule.  If they had an automatic, we would not have Sound of Music.
  • Although there is no power to the car at all, the tachometer still clicks like a time bomb. Very unsettling.
  • If you go to dinner and then come back to work, do not assume your car was just playing hard-to-get earlier. The battery will still be dead. But on the positive side, the cars surrounding you will be gone and then you can get a jump.
  • When putting the cables on the other car, make sure you connect to positive and negative. Consider yourself lucky if these connections are labeled in humongous letters that you fail to see because you are so used to not seeing any labels at all.
  • After the car is jumped (and I don’t mean this is a gang-type activity), and is now running, don’t turn it off right away. The battery needs to charge!  So drive 25 miles home just as it is getting dark and all the little deer are leaping out onto the road right in front of you. And if you do hit one one runs into your car, don’t turn the car off to investigate the car poor little deersy.
  • Be sure to back into your garage so in case your battery didn’t get charged up, you can call AAA to come deal with it in the morning.
  • Take those silly jumper cables that you took out of your car 3 months ago (after never having to use them over the past 7 years), and put them back in the damn car.
  • After you get home, make brownies for the super nice security guy at work who used his own car to jump-start my car.
  • My car also likes brownies, so be sure to offer some up. It pays to keep the little SUV happy.

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Comments on: "What I Learned From My Car Today" (6)

  1. Aloha! My human and I really enjoy reading your blog, so I’ve chosen you for the Versatile Blogger Award. For the details, see my blog entry http://pedrothecat.com/2011/09/27/my-first-award/. Congrats!

  2. Great post and all good advice. I make sure to always have jumper cables in my truck, although I will admit to being lax on much of the other items and car stuff in general. The key thing reminded me of a story. Many, and I mean many, years ago I locked the keys in my car, an old Ford Station Wagon, with the fake wood paneling. After fighting with it for awhile I walked to a strangers house (pre-cell phones) and asked to make a call. The guy said, “let me try my key, I’ve had this work before” (he had a similar Ford car). So he walks over and opens up MY car with HIS key. Guess, back then locks weren’t very sophisticated!

  3. wordsfallfrommyeyes said:

    Hi I’m visiting as led by Jimmie Chew’s page. Love his Meowmoir…

    You know a lot about cars – that’s great – this was a good read, thank you.

  4. I hope never to need any of the tips you just so generously shared with us. 😉

    Did those brownies have some kind of “extra” ingredient to make your SUV happier than regular brownies?? Just asking… 🙂

  5. that is so funny! and i have to say, though i haven’t owned a car in six years now, i was one of those guardian angels wandering the world with jumper cables for years. all because of my dad.

    i had no idea how to use any of them, but i always had to have: oil, jumper cables, water and frankly, a whole bunch of other stuff i couldn’t even name in the trunk of my car, due to the fact that my first car was a piece of junk that broke down as much as possible – including the 5/805 merge when i was, of course, in the left lane and had to get across 8 lanes of speeding/rude-californian-driver-filled traffic, with my friend’s grandmother in the car.

    i had many an occasion to thank my father in absentia though for all of that stuff, as did many others whom i jumped or offered water to as they were overheating, etc.

    am enjoying your blog (obviously – just wrote a blog of my own in response :-/ sorry), and just have to add that i’m so excited for christmas too! 🙂

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