Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Kim the Tool Man Keena

I drive an old car.  259,000 miles old.  Two windows don't roll down, hole in the muffler, shattered side mirror, fading paint job, rust in the rear kind of old.  So when the inside rear-view mirror became loose and wouldn't stay upright, which made it impossible to see out the back window, you think I would just let it go.  After all, I am really just waiting for the car to die.   But not being able to see behind is a real danger, especially when your 17-year-old also drives the car, and also cannot see out the back window.

After two weeks of "giving it a saggy try" I decided this morning that I must fix the mirror.  So I drove to the ever-so-helpful (and I mean that seriously!) auto parts store on 7th Avenue.  The gal said there was nothing to do but replace the mirror (something about a loose ball bearing) and she directed me to the Honda dealer.  Dollar signs immediately flashed before my eyes.

I drove, saggy mirror and all, to the dealership.  The serviceman took a look at the mirror and said it would need to be replaced.  After consulting the internet he told me a new mirror would cost $90.    I told him to forget it, that I could buy a magnificently gorgeous mirror for my home for $90 and I stomped out of the Service Department!!!  Ok, not really.  But I did say something like "$90? That's too much".  I'm sure he believed me when I said it because it was clear I hadn't spent $90 on my car in a very long time.

Then the serviceman, let's call him Duane, because that is his name, said "You could check with the salvage yard to see if they have one."

Me:  "But then I would have to have it installed, how much would that cost?"
Duane:  "Oh, I'd do it for you for nothing, it's just a couple screws."
Me:  (Thought to myself "AWESOME!") What's the name of the salvage yard?"
Duane handed me one of his business cards with the name and phone number of the salvage yard on it.

So, I went out to my saggy-mirrored-Honda and called the salvage yard.  They HAD what I needed, so I drove to Belgrade and bought the mirror for $10.  Salvage guy, sorry I didn't get his name, handed me the mirror and 3 screws.

Salvage Guy: "All you have to do is pop that cover off and just screw this up in there."
Me:  "Oh, the guy at the Honda place said he would put it on for me."
Salvage Guy: "Cool."

As I drove away with Salvage Guy's words were ringing in my ears ("All you have to do is pop that cover off and just screw this up in there") I wondered if a second trip to the Honda dealer was necessary.  I had to be to work in 30 minutes and who knew how busy Duane was at this point.  So I drove straight to work... okay I stopped for a Lemon-Mint tea, but then I drove straight to work...okay I stopped at Home Depot for 200 pounds of sand, but THEN I drove straight to work.  I was 10 minutes early so I ran in and raided the tool box.   With several screwdrivers and needle-nosed pliers, because I love needle-nosed pliers and think you should use them on every repair job, I ran back to the car.  It wasn't quite as easy as popping the cover off, it was more like prying, but I did get it off.  I removed Old Saggy and just screwed the new one up in there.

Feeling all good about myself, I walked into the bank while texting Jim of my mad repair skills.  It was a good morning.


Gary said...

Your car is breaking down because you're hauling 200 pounds of sand in it. That's what trucks are for.

Susan Beth said...

Yeah for Kim the Tool Man Keena!

Christa Clark said...

Our windshield is cracked, can you come fix that next?