Isn’t that hilarious how just last week I was talking about how my greatest fear is highway driving and how my car, Precious, hates velocity? True story, scroll down to the last post…AND THEN IT HAPPENED! It turns out Precious doesn’t hate velocity PER SE, she just had some lady part problems. Like her mother, she is middle aged, 7 car years is fair to say prolly equals a 50 year-old drying up bitch with some good years left but with scrapes from an enraged mall parking incident two days before Christmas and a side door dent from another parking lot on a super windy day…and yes, both were my dumb faults for backing into a pole and parking too close to an SUV with those righteous stick family adhesives on the back window, although anyone with common sense knows not to park theirs next to one containing children because parents are too drunk or frazzled to care if the doors swing open too far and hit the next car, can you blame them? Have you ever tried to stuff an arched back wailing toddler into a car seat? Who cares if a middle aged lady Scion XB needs $500 worth of body work? Get that child safely tucked into the Jeep Sahara so you make it home without breaking anyone’s legs. I SO understand, but back then I had the smarts to have a mom-van with sliding doors and you laughed at me, see? Makes sense now, right?
Anyway on Sunday, five of us family member drove up the Don Valley to Newmarket for Father’s Day, and because I hate highways so much, my nephew Arne drove us: He, Me, Freddy, Evangeline, and Sister Sue.
“The clutch is not engaging properly,” Arne said mid-way somewhere beyond the moon. But he always says this, at least since Christmas, I think it’s his tag-line on Grindr.
“What does that that mean?” I ask from the backseat, looking at my eyebrows in the rearview mirror. What is going on with my eyebrows? They used to be so dark and lush and now they are all but gone. I haven’t even been stress-plucking, I think they are just shedding and rotting in my old age. And why did I used to hate my eyebrows so much? They were way better than Angelina Jolie’s supposedly perfect brows, they arched more cleverly and with wry humour that made you think I was laughing at you (and I probably was back then, not anymore). Now I am drawing them back on with a brow pencil. Pain in the ass, sometimes I end up looking like a chola. Or Joan Crawford when I rub the gooey brown junk off. What the hell?
He said nothing and my daughter kept giving me worried glances and then we managed to get to Aurora, except we didn’t know it at the time because who knows where you are on GeoGuessr ? (Seriously click that link after you finish reading this and play the game with Google maps, fun fun fun). Relatively speaking, in case you don’t know the geography, is like if Toronto is Earth, then Newmarket is Mercury, we’re now in Venus, which is basically in the middle of nowhere, and that there was cell phone service was a fucking miracle and how grateful were we when the car finally died safely at the side of the road. And Arne, bless his heart, had the wherewithal to Instagram it. And then call a tow truck.
I, on the other hand, had lost all the saliva in my mouth and production came to a halt. I started to bark.
“What are we going to do? I don’t have CAA! I don’t even have a credit card!” I am so stupid. Pro tip: Do not hide those envelops in the back of your junk drawer, pay the minimum balance each month. You can do it.
Everyone else is all chill, as that is the Peterson nature, I am the Chihuahua of the family, all nervous and neurotic. Don’t worry, blah blah blah, they kept saying and Sister Sue finally placating me with her enviable vacant Mastercard. So we waited for the tow truck and my Other Sister Sandy to pick us up from the side of the road. Other Sister Sandy came almost immediately (or at least as long as it takes to get from Mercury to Venus) and the tow truck driver took his sweeeeeeet time. ಠ╭╮ಠ
That was when we a) got sunburned and b) met Officer Excellent from the OPP who bellied up to our wreckage with his cruiser. His last name was actually Excellent! Is that not awesome? He was the sweetest man, all laughing and cheerful, and he hung out with us until the tow truck arrived. There was a kerfuffle about how would would all travel, squished in my sister’s car or one of us on the tow truck? Officer Excellent would figure out for us. Dude could do anything. Even the Russian mafia tow truck driver was enchanted by his charm (“That is the nicest OPP officer I ever met!” in thick Russian accent) but alas, he had a hooker in the passenger seat and yes, she was definitely a working girl with her feet up on the dashboard and one of her tacky pink gladiator sandals was hanging on the rearview mirror, I am not even kidding, so he didn’t have room for one of us. We begged Officer Excellent to give us a ride but “that wouldn’t be safe” instead it was A-okay with him for all us all piling all sardine-like in the back of Other Sister’s sedan-type car, “Godspeed!” he said as he whizzed away in his blue OPP Excellentmobile. Adorable. Sigh.
Aaaaaand the Russian mafia tow truck bill came to $270.71.
Pro Tip: When your car breaks down on the highway, THIS IS THE MOMENT YOU CALL CAA and join on the spot and enjoy a free tow from a driver who probably enjoys his hookers AFTER his shift. These are the things that stupid people learn after the fact. Because everybody with a car of a certain age should have roadside insurance. Holy shit, most people with only a brain stem know that. Why don’t people tell us head-in-the-sand-types that you can actually join when your car breaks down? Well I am now, and you’re welcome. ****UPDATE: Apparently the old dude at the gym was WRONG, membership is activated 24 hours after initial sign up for new membership, so that was $270.71 well spent after all.
The next day, my beloved mechanic Mike, took a look at the car and the obvious was true: Burnt out clutch. He called me no less than 3 times that day and the next while he was fixing it and said: “Kristeeeeeen, why do drive a standard transmission? I think you should have an automatic, blah blah blah!”
He was clutch shaming me to the point of tears. Clutched shamed and horrified that my stupid veiny long-toed feet caused $850 worth of damage, I actually did cry and have a massive meltdown. What the hell? The car is 7 years old and needs a new clutch, that doesn’t seem too crazy, or does it? So I googled and found out that NORMAL people, not just the stupid ones, burn out their clutches. (Also confession: I have done it before on the Mini Cooper but maintain it was a faulty, piece of shit car because it was only a year old and everything else broke on it within the first year. Fuck those BMW crooks).
But nonetheless I cried and cried all that night and was talked off the ledge by my fellow blog friend, Erin. The clutch shaming was too much for my fragile ego. It was an accumulation of the shit storm that has transpired over the last few years. Although everything “bad” that happened, happened because I was a dumb ass. Like for example, even when I went to pick up the car, as I was walking along Eastern, I tripped and fell on both knees, shattering my dainty, dollar store quality crepitated knee caps and scraping both shins. You know those types of road burn wounds take forever to heal. Betty the dog won’t leave me alone, she thinks the scabs are raw bacon bits, licky, licky, licky (tickles, I kind of like it, gross I know). If I wasn’t wearing stupid flip flops, it probably wouldn’t have happened. So now I am wearing Birkenstocks, which is almost as ridiculous but the soles are hard and less slippery. A stupid bitch can actually learn a lesson once in awhile.
Also back to the important issues like my eyebrows. Pro tip: I found the eyebrow kit from Benefit, it’s way better than a pencil because you brush it on all feathery so it looks like hairs, not a sharpie marker line. If I didn’t have the internet for things like that, I would be spending at least $850 in 7 years having my brows groomed by the professionals at the Brow House, so by that estimation, who cares about a little old clutch? Honestly, get a grip, Peterson, these are all just first world problems.