They Didn't Ask Me (dr_phil_physics) wrote,
They Didn't Ask Me

Entropy Still On That Winning Streak

Speaking of car repairs -- the previous post being on the passing of Tom Magliozzi of Car Talk -- the 1996 Blazer decided it needed some attention. And boy was it a wingdinger.

Wednesday, I am getting ready to leave Western to get up to Grand Valley's downtown campus so we can go see Interstellar, and I dump my bag on the front seat, offload the walker's wire basket to the back seat, wheel around to the back, hit the button to pop open the tailgate window, hear the actuator... And the window is stuck.


Try it again. Same result. Did I not hit the door power unlock? Or did I lock it by mistake -- and good thing I left the driver's door open, because I had tossed the keys on the front seat... Nope. Door opened. Doors unlocked. Pressed the tailgate window release button the dash... same result. Go back, try pushing the button while yanking on the window. Not. Moving.

Take a breath. Okay, this is the 767 of walkers -- widebodied. Can I get it in the back door AND on the seat? In theory yes. But in picking up the folded walker -- why doesn't the damn thing have a catch instead of feeling like you're herding cats -- it's long enough that I can't lean on the door. And without support of cane, walker, something to lean on, I can get the walker almost in, but I feel too unstable to lift it all the way in.

I put the walker down and try to figure out another, safer strategy... "Dr. Phil, do you need some help?" It's two guys from one of my classes. Between the three of us, we get the walker in the back seat.

Thursday morning, we drop off the Blazer at Chevy. How DO you open the back? We had a failure of the tailgate window in the '79 Suburban long ago, so you couldn't open the tailgate. But you had to disassemble the tailgate from the inside and I knew two of the screws were stripped, so I never had it fixed. But the Blazer? I'm handicapped. What if it the walker had been trapped inside? Yikes.

So yes, the mechanic had to climb over the stuff in the back, open the panel on the tailgate from the inside to release the window and open it.

Poor design. What if the back was filled with a Laz-y-Boy and there was no room? I suppose they could drill the lock or break the window, but geesh.

However... the actuator lasted for 18 years and 326,000 miles, so things wear out. With an oil change, it was about $348. Not too bad, given the labor.

Of course auto repairs cluster. Monday the same Blazer goes in to get four new Goodyear Silent Armor Wranglers and front/back brakes. Tuesday we may get our first real snow... Whee! THIS will be expensive. Still, Chevy's price on the Silent Armors -- wonderful tires by the way, I don't stint on tires -- is less that the Goodyear store, so I'm good.

That and gas pretty much takes care of my part-time salary for the semester. Why am I teaching again? (grin)

Dr. Phil

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