One of my more normal coworkers was entering the building as I was leaving last night.
“It’s 5:30,” I told him, helpfully.
“Yeah, I know, I–“
“It’s the end of the day. Did you just get back from Australia or something?”
“Did I–Australia?” he asked, a trifle beleagueredly.
“You know, because in Australia it’s the other side of the earth, and the toilet water swirls the opposite direction, and when it’s summer here it’s winter there, so I worried you might have just gotten back and you’re all turned around and you think we start work at 5:00, but really we end work at 5:00.”
No one at work can say I’m not full of information.
“I forgot my hat, June. I didn’t go to Australia.”
Hunh. Well, if he wants to be all weird, okay.
But that fascinating story is not why I’ve gathered you all here today. I’ve gathered you here to tell you about the plug.
[sound of chairs scraping closer to computer heard across the land]
My car has a habit of telling me my tires are low. If there’s a change of season—not a whole opposite-Australia-season or anything, just a new season—inevitably my car will tell me all my tires are low. In the past, I’ve (“I’ve”) filled them up at the gas station and I’m usually good as new, and by the way I wasn’t that great when I was new, either.
But last fall, JUST AS IT CHANGED SEASONS, it kept saying “Tires low” and pointing decidedly at all four tires with either stemless arrows or really bossy wedges of cheese. I had just moved and it was really the last thing I needed, but I bought four new tires, because apparently you should not go from 2012 to 2018 with the same tires. I thought maybe my tires would stop talking to me when the weather changed.
And that is why I was
when my car told me I had one low tire, over yonder in the back left. It happened first on Sunday, on my way to Chris and Lilly’s, and I stopped at not one but two gas stations and realized I didn’t…quite know how to fill a tire. Do you push that little handle thing?
I regaled C and L with this riveting story when I got there, and Lilly said, “Did you press that handle thing?” and why does everyone else know how to get through life more than me?
After my visit, when I got back to my car,
low-tire light. This time I drove to Sheetz and pushed the handle thing, and the light went off.
But then as I drove my giant commute yesterday, PING! Low-tire wedge of cheese light. I also heard what I thought was maybe a flapping. Granted it could have been my hips, but I thought not. Then on the way back from lunch, back to work?
The tire was definitely bad.
Fortunately, there’s a shady-looking gas station on the drive, that long drive, from my house to work. I’ve gotten gas there before but never ventured in, as it looks sort of like if you walked in they’d feature pimps dressed like Huggie Bear selling vats of crack.
But yesterday I had to venture in, and by the way it was SNOWING, and thanks, world. So I blustered on in there and oh my god.
There was a PARTY in there. Several people were standing around talking loudly, but it wasn’t anger loud, it was happy loud. They were joking and telling stories and there were delicious snacks available,
and best of all, the owner guy was all, “Well, who’s THIS beautiful woman?”
I looked behind me. That anyone noticed I’d even walked in was a miracle at 53.
“Please don’t give him your phone number,” said the woman behind the counter. “He’ll call you, then he’ll stalk you. You’ll never get rid of him.”
I loved everyone in that place.
And despite the fact that they were busy, including being busy helping an old lady named Lottie, and I was very glad Edsel wasn’t there to eat her face, they got me in right away. It was nice and warm in there, with the snow blowing outside, and I paged through a People Magazine (“The Truth About Meghan”).
Lottie the cute old lady was worrying her “Cadillac converter” had gone wrong.
“Do you live near the hospital construction?” the repair guy asked me, after about 15 minutes.
No, but I WORK near it. For months now, hundreds of construction workers have been on the next block, and they cross the street IN THE MIDDLE OF THE STREET whenever they feel like it, cars be damned, and they’ve been driving me berserk and I have half a mind to “Let me speak to you manager” them and I feel like they can feel my resentment and they’re probably all, There’s the bitch in the yellow Mini.
CROSS AT THE CORNER. WAIT FOR CARS. Is that too much to ask?
“These are construction plugs. They get shot into concrete. One tire, two plugs,” the guy told me, and then they charged me $16.01 for patching my tire up.
You heard me. Sixteen-o-one. Oh my god I am going there every day. That was the best place on earth.
Anyway, that’s my plug for the car-repair/gas station near my house, get it?
I hope this whole post didn’t make you tired.