Saturday, November 14, 2009

I have a new time waster. I'm becoming a car mechanic (and electronic?) to take care of my cars. The reason? Whores, what else!

I became a plumber when they charge me one grand to install something that you can buy in the hardware store for $50. I can buy all the nice toys in the hardware store, play with my pipes, and still have change to see a hooker or two. Or, a few massages to ease the muscle ache after hard work, and perhaps to release the tension of risking failure and flood.

The same thing happened when I took my car for regular servicing. I had enough. I used to drop my car at the dealers for everything. In return I got a rose. I was successfully threatened with warranty and resale value. The list of extra work done on my car even for simple services didn't make sense to me, except for the sky high price.

I started driving late in life. I even picked a house within walking distance to the train station and my 1st job. There everybody take the train to get out of town, get a life (as in London), and back. The car is just something to have, and they always are a burden to me. I didn't waited forever to drive at 16 and got an orgasm for my 1st car.

I am very much like a stereotypical woman driver and the mechanics punished me hard for it. Now everything make sense to me with the net. I came across complete manuals that include every bolts. I could see what mechanics do on youtube. They charge an hour to unscrew a nut or two?!

I think dealers charge $90 to $100 an hour labor, friendly neighborhood mechanics $80 - I'm in a bad neighborhood in that sense. (But still US dealers are a lot more reasonable than European ones.) Usually you have to fix a pair or two, multiplying that for two to four! It doesn't make any sense when if I can get the work done and get pampered afterwards.

To make the labor cost look reasonable, the parts quoted are over twice the price at eBaymotors for example - for the same OEM part. If not it's all over the net and Amazon delivers free. Now multiply the savings by two to four - you get a whore or two or a few massages.

In addition, you can hook up the on-board computer to your laptop and play around with it such as maximizing your mileage, saving gas. There is extensive on-board diagnostics since 1996 and the mechanics still insist that the codes don't tell you anything. But that's how they are supposed to do the diagnostics, and with google every code make sense.

Also, my cars are usually so dirty that I wouldn't go near, except for getting in. I believed that to keep the paint in top condition you need frequent waxing. And to wax you need to clean the car completely and dry thoroughly. A European hand wash used to cost you an arm and a leg. The American ones are really cyborgs. The robots are really good except when you need to touch the car, for gentle brushing and drying for example. But still you need to drink a few coffee waiting painfully while you car is being washed. Having Wi-Fi is good, but believer me you don't to see me "working" at my laptop in public. So usually I wait until I cannot tolerate the dirt, and then take my cars to be cleaned thoroughly and professionally.

Now I'm rather happy with the dry wash spray that is safe for skin. At least one dealer is happy with it for the amount of water saved, and more importantly labor. Before that I though I would like to wash my own cars and keep it sparkling. But on every public drain is the warning that the water goes directly into the beaches, even though I'm not that close. It doesn't look sensitive enough if you wash your car outside the house. Now I can even wash my wheels with biodegradable detergent inside my garage with just one bucket. It's not dry, but the dirty water goes into the toilet easily. What split in the garage is a negligible fraction of the dirt on my wheels, and the bio detergent. Also, modern technology means that the microfibre cloth I use for washing are easily taken care of with my modern washer and modern detergent.

Cleaning my dirty wheels takes 5 minutes with pipeling. I got to see the full glory of my alloy wheels more. It takes about the same time to get to the car wash, and I'm lazy. I can do it in my pajamas before taking a bath. Now even under the hood is relatively free of dust and grease.

I used to have a neighbor a few houses down the road. He had a taller, trophy type wife and a beautiful kid (a daughter). But he spent a lot of times with his classic car or may be kit car, washing them with only a bucket of water. I thought he was a special car dealer but I never asked. Geeks and car enthusiastic don't go well. But now I understand. Also, women make the world goes around.

Let me pay my respect to the true professionals, who can release tension, make love, make people happy and all that.

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