25 January 2008

Where I work* ...

It's been a while since I posted here. Apologies.

Hood Ornament Harry

Mrs. S is a sweet little old lady, though she's about 150 years old and shouldn't drive. She pulls into the lot last week with both side view mirrors blown off her Saturn. Now, this poor little car doesn't have a straight panel on it, bounced it off everything on the narrow streets in town and her garage. Every three months or so, I put a new side view on her car. It was a double this time. Heh ...

So, as I said, she pulls into the lot, swerves a left right off the Avenue in front of me as I'm trying to pull this crew cab Silverado pickemup truck into the shop. Thank god I saw the white roof of the Saturn in front of the push bar before I drove into the driver's door. I blow the horn and she looks around vacantly, not noticing the grille of the big Chevy a foot from her window. I get out, get her attention by tapping on the window, and motion her over next to the dumpster. Fine. She moves without hitting anything and I get the truck into the shop.

Since I got real work to do, Harry goes out to Mrs. S (who's still in her car) with his book to write down the vehicle info and send her on her way. We get the mirrors in a day and she comes in to get them installed. Five minutes later, Harry comes back in and calls for the new mirrors. I look out the window and see Mrs. S backing up to get out of the lot, straight for another customer's car. Harry sees it too and runs out, yelling at her to stop. Happily she sees him and hits the brake. Just in time.

Harry goes to her door and asks if she wants him to turn the car around so it's pointing at the street. Now, her window doesn't go down because the door has been banged up so much, so she opens the door to hear Harry. She says yes, but leaves the car in 'reverse'. Harry yells at her to put it in 'park'. Who the Hell knows what she heard, but she hit the gas. The car lurches backward and the door catches Harry, launching him across the hood of the other customer's car, just as Mrs. S' car backs into it. Ain't seen Harry move that quick in a long time. Heh ...

Thankfully there was no damage, to Harry (the old man was sore for a couple days though) or the other customer's car. We got Mrs. S pointed the right way and turned her loose after assuring her Harry would survive. While we can laugh at it now, there's a buncha old folks who shouldn't be driving. Unfortunately, there's nothing we can do and it's up to their families to take action to get them off the road. From personal experience, it's a difficult thing to do, especially in places like Long Island where mass transit isn't exactly old-friendly but Mrs. S, and a lot of sweet little old ladies like her, is gonna kill somebody one day. Hopefully it ain't one of us.

I Pity Mr. T

Mrs. T is a little woman, about 98 pounds, just over 5 feet tall, a transplant from Georgia who married a local boy and moved back here. They don't have any kids but they have a little Yorkshire Terrier named Danny. Now, Mrs. T had this Mitsubishi Montero that she loved. It was the sport model, so it had the bigger V6 and was fun to drive. It wasn't that big so she and Danny (they go everywhere together) could zip in and out of the narrow streets in town. It had a lot of miles on it, so Mr. T was a good guy and bought her a Christmas present. Nice guy, right? Heh ...

Mrs. T and Danny show up the other day in the Christmas present for its first oil change. He goes and buys her a GMC Denali XL, big 6.2 liter V-8, every bell and whistle, fucking thing is the size of a Greyhound bus, barely fits in the shop.

She and Danny come to pick it up and ask her how she likes it.

1 - "The thing is so big, it takes me a half hour to get down the Avenue."

2 - "I can't park it anywhere on the street because somebody's already hit the mirror."

3 - "It's a bitch to turn corners with and it takes forever to find a parking space big enough."

4 - "But Danny likes it."

No shit. Fucking thing's a playground for the little dog. "So why'd ya get it?" I ask her.

"I didn't," she says. "This is my husband's idea of practical. I'm gonna kill him, bless his heart."

Sucks to be Mr. T. Heh ...

*Part of an ongoing, semi-regular series.

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