black friday…literally

something about my car crossing the six digit mark on the odometer marked a turning point…

…and not a good one. after may brought the need for four new tires, wheel balancing, a tire rotation i did myself, an alignment, and other small annoyances. then came last friday.

i’ve been told beamers can go 300K without a hiccup. i’d like to think i take care of mine pretty nicely. but friday made me wonder if it was mad at me…it was just one of those days where everything kept going wrong – which was odd, ’cause it hadn’t started that way.

i’d been trying to do an oil change for a few weeks at that point. now, i don’t say “trying” due to a lack of mechanical ability or tools or anything. no, it started off a money issue – but that was fixed within a few days, and all looked promising until i started in on the actual wrench turning work.

i had been told, after all conventional tools for this job didn’t work, to try icing down the plastic part as cold might shrink it just enough to make it loosen. from a physics stand point this made sense, so i went to a convenience store for ice and ended up getting the ice, a two dollar lottery scratch-off that won me twenty bucks, and i found the mechanics gloves i’d been wanting that were twenty bucks at all auto parts places for under four bucks there.

like i said, not a bad start to the day. off to the house i went to get this oily party started.

now this is where i’m tempted to go into a fairly mechanical explanation of what i had to do and where and why it’s odd and all that shit – but this isn’t a mechanic’s blog or some “bmw diy” site, so let me just stay basic and save space – part of my car that should have been easily removable was anything but, and in the process of trying to “force the issue”, as several beamer mechanics had told me it had come down to as the only option, shit got fucked up worse than i realized. like to the point where i ended up standing in the blazing sun in the middle of nowhere covered in motor oil with my car undriveable.

in a word, “fuck”.

i hiked two and a half miles (this experience reminded me why i need to do more cardio in the gym when i start back – i’m giving myself a week off for right now) to wait in air-conditioning while JAB, who was doing a job in austin at the time, went to the bmw dealership and grabbed me the part and drove out to meet me. after three hours of us trying everything we could think of, including several runs to town so i could purchase tools that did nothing more than frustrate us about the whole thing even more, he had to get home to his little girl’s birthday so he dropped me at my place.

happy be-lated to bella, i should add – and no, she’s NOT named after some tween vampire book bitch.

so after a brief sonic scarf-down shane and his nephew picked me up and we went out for round two. the sun was starting to set but we got the old part off (in almost twenty pieces) before dark and had the new one in place, than put in the quart of oil i brought but it didn’t show on the dipstick. we ran back to my place and got two more – than we were BARELY showing, making me wonder how much i’d lost – but then when i went to put the oil cap on it slipped out of my hand and down into the engine bay. thankfully shane’s arms are long and thin and he could grab it easily…and due to the hazard lights being on at that point for eight hours the car wouldn’t start.

none of us had jumper cables. this is as close to crying as an adult male i ever get, save for the passing of one of my puppies or something.

since a half dozen or so of caldwell county’s finest had popped by to check on us while i was stranded road side, and run my plates and license in the process, i figured i’d hit them up, so i called the sheriff’s department…and one of the deputies had jumper cables, but was on a call. it took almost an hour, but he came out and pulled up behind us (after blazing past us at first due to shane and his nephew unintentionally placing themselves in the strategic positions of both my hazard lights as they leaned up against my car so we were invisible as he hurdled down the dark highway).

by department policy i gotta run your license and insurance

yeah, dude, whatever – sixth time today ain’t gonna find anything the other five didn’t…pop your hood and gimme them cables…

he did, as he took my license from me, and we popped his hood and fired my car up. as we handed him the cables back he gave me my shit back and we got back to the house. i was out fifty bucks in parts, thirty in tools (which will be returned shortly after this is written), although reading this back as i write it i guess i got off kinda light as far as car expenses go…but after over $300 IN WHEEL SHIT LAST MONTH, and the $100 in cash or so i missed not working friday night, let’s just say some beer and burgers were in order to ease my troubled soul AND bank account, so off to lilly’s we went, which wasn’t a bad way to wrap up a black friday…