Thursday, March 25, 2010

Apparently, I AM Made of Money...Or So They Think

I was driving to a meeting the other day, when a few lights popped up unexpectedly on the dash.  Yikes.

They seemed to indicate that I did not have brakes - certainly not anti lock brakes, not so sure on the regular ones - so of course, I continued driving.  I do this often with weird noises, and I find that a proper radio volume is an extremely effective means of silencing these minor annoyances.  But lights?  Not so easy to ignore.  Plus there was the whole "I might lose my brakes" concern.  So, I drove back to the office, then home, then to volleyball back in the city, then home again, and back to the office.  But those darn light just didn't go off*:
Finally, I took the car in to the shop...and decided to let them know that the last repair attempt was unsuccessful (in September 2008, or so their records say...I kinda thought it was like a month ago...)

The bill:  $1100.  Double yikes.

" my regular brakes work?" I say.
"Yea," the guy says, "but you don't have anti-lock brakes."
"You would only use those in a panic situation," he adds helpfully.
"So I don't need need those?"
"Well, not usually.  But in a panic siutation..." he trails off.
"Ok - let's just wait on that," I say with confidence.

The bill:  $630.  Back to one and half yikes, with only minor fear of sliding uncontrollably off a cliff.
I drove home.

And then I saw the decidedly unnormal black smoke rising from the furnace vent.

"That's totally normal, right?" I tried to convince Adam.
"And that nasty smell?  That's just, umm, from the cat, right?  Or maybe there is a dead thing in the basement?" I was trying to think positively.

The furnace guys seemed to think otherwise.  They're here right now, cleaning the thing out.  And another guy is supposed to turn up shortly with a $475 part.  Great.


Understandably, I am a tad more conscious of my spending patterns, and it was with much righteousness that I returned the the supermarket which had charged me $5.49 for a gallon of milk.  I had seen this price posted, but also saw that the "club price" was only $2.59, so I figured my card didn't work.  This because I had also purchased steaks to cook out on the beautiful sunny weekend (the Weber works great, Brandon!).  But the steaks too, were listed at $5.88 a pound with obnoxious signs, and I was charged $7.89.

You know that saying, "the customer is always right?" Well...sometimes the customer is a moron.  The person at the desk explained how I bought Organic Milk, which was truly $5.49, and how the steaks were not listed as sale items.  (I went back to the meat department and saw that the sale price was only given if 4 or more steaks were purchased.)  I practically begged her not to give me my money back, and apologized for my inability to read...but she gave it to me anyway.  And she is sending a new card out to the house.

So, car repair: minus $630.
Furnace repair:  minus $719
Wegmans refund:  plus $9.99

Feeling like a moron:  priceless.

Dang, I wish I was made of money.  But you know, even if I had a million dollars, I would not want to spend it on "solenoid valve replacements", new "BP pressure chambers", or "organic milk".  Vacations in exotic places?  Now that's more like it.

*Note in this picture, I am NOT moving.


Cynthia said...

I've got 3 lights on on my dash right now. I've been driving it for days. They were on 2 weeks ago also. I took it in for service. Cost me $1200!! Two days later - light on the dash on again. Took it in last weekend. Cost another $75 - and this time that was to tell me that they couldn't find anything wrong with it. So... Tuesday... lights on the dash came back on again. It goes in again tonight. Not looking forward to seeing the bill again!! But they had better fix it this time!!

Tiffany said...

It is good you are not made of money because I bet by now there would not be much of you left. Plus it would sucks to have to decide which piece of you to give away to pay for brakes. Although I wonder if someone was actually made of money, would it go through mitosis and multiply? Would we scratch off dead money like we do dead skin cells??? So I think the moral of the story here is...consider yourself lucky that you are NOT made of money!