About Me

name: Beanie
age: 35
email: bbbeans@yahoo.com


Book: New York by Edward Rutherfurd

Music: 1999 by Prince

Mood: The current mood of bbbeans@yahoo.com at www.imood.com


Teahouse Blossom
May It Please The Court
Blonde Justice
Ernie The Attorney
Lessig Blog
Evan Schaeffer's Legal Underground
Jeremy's Weblog
Begging The Question
The Neutral Zone Trap
the imbroglio
Biting Tongue
Peanut Butter Burrito
Legal Quandary
In It But Not Of It
A New Duck
Just Playin'
Res Ipsa Eloquent
How Appealing
Lag Liv
Law v. Life
Lowering the Bar
Bag and Baggage
The Uncivil Litigator
Will Work For Favorable Dicta


Divine Angst
Frequent Citations
Magic Cookie
Knocked Up (and in Law School)
Mommy on the Floor
Thanks, But No Thanks
Law Ingenue
No. 634
think like a woman. act like a man.


the underwear drawer
Do Not Overmix
Little Lost Robot
Overheard in the Office


Truth Laid Bear
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Screaming Bean
Monday, March 21, 2005

I know I should be reading in the library, but I finally came up with something to write about and I want to catch lightning in a bottle so to speak.

I drive a non-descript GM sedan. This replaced my white non-descript Corsica when it was brutally totaled in a chain-reaction crash back in 2000. We weren't in the best position to buy a car, I had gotten a payoff check from the insurance which was a pittance given that the car had over 100K miles on it. (Still, it was a great car...and I miss it, but I digress.) Back to my current sedan. It's paid off this year, has just over 50K and for the most part has been trouble-free. (Proceed to bang on the carrel for good luck.) In the last few months, the coolant light had come on intermittently, leading us to believe that there was a minor leak in the system, but didn't smell burning coolant, and the level drop was just enough to bring the light on. Refill with Dex-Cool, wait a few weeks, and repeat. On the Spring Break Road Trip 2005, this was a concern, but only after we got to Canada and had the light come on in the hotel parking lot did we realize what a problem we had. (Now before you get all concerned about our maintenance skills, let me remind you that the spouse is a fully trained mechanical engineer with hands on Formula SAE experience. The maintenance had been done.) However, the minor leak and become quite a bit more, and a good quarter of the coolant had been lost on the road trip. Open the hood, stare at the hoses, do a diagnosis without tearing it apart. We decided the one hose that seemed to be the most wet had to be the culprit. We wonder aloud whether it would make the trip home. We have our doubts. New plan. Add water, get the car back across the border, find the nearest GM dealership and get it replaced. The idea of ripping it apart with the proper tools just wasn't appealing even if we did know where the closest Canadian Tire was. Luckily, this is near the end of the trip so not a huge loss.

Fast forward to the dealership. We pull in, find the service department and notice that this dealership is brand spanking new. You could eat off the floors in the service bay. They have a greeter. She goes off to summon a service writer. (Now, for those of you who have ever dealt with a GM dealership, this isn't normal. Perhaps in an import dealership, but not in any domestic service department I've ever been in.) Time stamp for this operation, approximately 9:30am. This becomes important. Service writer arrives. He's snappily dressed. He has his clipboard at the ready. We tell the story that we're from out of town, a few hours from our home and the car is bleeding coolant from a hose that we believe is giving up the ghost. He looks at us warily and walks out to the car with us. Pop the hood, point out errant hose. The hose really doesn't seem to have a name. The writer goes right into fees. $48 bucks just to take a look at the sucker. Then we'll talk money on replacement parts. The next obvious question is asked, "How long do you think you'll be?" Answer? "Oh, we'll get you out of here probably by 8:00pm tonight." Incredulity sets in. Beat. Now remember what time it is? Yeah. "Oh....I don't think so, we want to get home tonight."

Now, for some this wouldn't have been a big deal. For us, we probably could have limped the car back home. But this came the day after GM announced an 80% cut in 2005 forecasts due to poor sales and health care costs. GM needs every penny it can get its hands on. We were willing to drop the money, but not to give them nearly 11 hours to figure out what was wrong with my car. If they had said, "It's been a busy morning, we're not sure we'll be able to fit you in," I would have understood. To get the condescension and open-ended time frame when it looked like they were all bored, that'll just piss you off. I'm working up the letter to GM now. Not that it'll get read or that anyone will care, but damn, I'm only 30 and I have a lot of cars to buy in my lifetime. Is it really worth it to leave that sort of bad taste in my mouth this early in the game?