January 26th, 2009
|jimbojones||12:14 pm - it ain't a Gran Torino, that's for sure|
Janis and I went to see a late showing of Clint Eastwood's flick, Gran Torino. If you aren't familiar with the premise, it's the basic white-person-befriends-formerly-worthless-ethnic-minority schtick - you know, $ethnic_person tries to $crime victimizing $white_person / $white_person finds $value in $ethnic_person and befriends them / $white_person lifts $ethnic_person out of the gutter, protecting $ethnic_person from $other_ethnic_people intent on (harming|impregnating|indoctrinating) (him|her) along the way.
It's a quite good example of the type, however.
So here's the surreal moment of the weekend: not 5 freaking minutes after getting home from the movie, Janis tells me to look out the window, somebody is slowing down in front of our house. Sure enough, there's a Chrysler Lebaron in pretty terrible shape creepin' Boyz-N-Tha-Hood style, and it comes to a dead stop right in front. Wtf?
I kept watching through the window until the driver actually got out of the car, then I went outside and asked, "do you need help?" The driver (teenage girl) just sort of shrugged like "whatever" and said "it just stopped." So I got in her car and turned the key - won't start up in Park. OK, moved the shifter to neutral. Now it turns over - really, REALLY asthmatically - but eventually, with some patience and some gas pedal pumpery, I get the thing to cough its way through
tuberculosis starting. I look askance over at the girl, who is standing there. She says "but there's something caught under it, it won't move." So I drive a few feet. It goes. But I do hear/feel a pretty horrid grunching sort of noise for, say, three feet out of ten.
I tell her that we've got to get her car out of the main street - people unfortunately use the main street as a fucking racetrack. So I get the thing backed up into the side street, by which time the entire cabin is FILLED with exhaust fumes to the point it's difficult to see, much less breathe. Argh. I got out, and asked her to sit in it and steer while I pushed it back a bit more, so I could evaluate the binding feeling/sound more - I wanted to find out if it was in the drivetrain or just in the rolling gear.
Sure enough, in neutral with the motor off, it still binds up pretty badly, which confirms what I was pretty much afraid of - one of the wheels is about to fucking fall off. I could tell a lot better WHERE the problem was coming from while I was 1. pushing the car and 2. not sucking in giant lungfuls of carbon monoxide, so I headed straight to the passenger's side front - sure enough, that wheel was only held on by a single lugnut. (Technically there are two on there... but they're immediately next to each other, and the other one is only held on by about 1/2 a turn of thread!)
So I showed her what the problem was... at which point she started jumping up and down and yelling about "that stupid crackhead motherfucker" that apparently put the wheel on the car (a friend, or friend-of-a-friend, apparently). She couldn't get any of her family to answer the phone (it was after midnight), but she got a friend, who I had to talk into getting there (she couldn't manage directions so that the friend could find it). The friend arrived, rollin' in $200 worth of car and $3000 worth of (Almost certainly rented - Did you know they rent wheels? they rent wheels. I just recently discovered this myself.) 24" wheels. Fuck yeah.
The driver and her friend commenced to discussing the lack of merits of that stupid crackhead motherfucker, and that some other friends of theirs lived fairly close, and we established that no, they did not in fact have a jack and tire iron put between them. Eventually the three (male) friends walked up, I showed them the problem, told them (as I had the girls) that they needed a jack, a tire iron, and at least one more lug nut or the car just flat would not be safe to drive - and that they could leave the car parked in front of my house there on the side street until tomorrow, if they needed to. I told them to come knock on the door if they needed help, and went back inside.
There was about another hour of screeching and screaming about crackhead motherfuckers who put wheels on cars outside, and then they all left. (It occurred to me later - rather sadly - that out of five people, not a single one of them ever so much as said "um, thanks" during the whole debacle.)
That was Friday night. It is now Monday, and the turdmobile is still there.
(all images clickable)
Truth be told, I'm not really all that pissed... because I have a neighbor who called the cops to complain about my Neon being on that side street without tags on it a few months ago. And I made fucking certain that the turdmobile got parked RIGHT outside his window.
Eventually I guess I'll have to have the thing towed, since they didn't leave me a number, haven't been by to talk to me, etc etc etc. But for right now, I'm pretty fine with my asshole neighbor having to look at it every day. Sucker.
Current Mood: amused