Monday, July 14, 2008

Things That Go Bump Around Midnight...

Last Thursday, The Joans played at The Acorn Theatre in Three Oaks, Michigan. This was our second appearance there, and we thoroughly enjoyed ourselves, as we did on New Years Eve. They have a video night every Thursday, where they offer drink specials (the theatre has a full bar) and show retro videos.

So this Thursday, they invited The Joans back as extra entertainment, and the audience really enjoyed themselves. So did we! Here's a picture as proof:

Joans Vintage Car
One of the Acorn patrons, Ron, kindly allowed The Joans to pose next to his 1979 Clenet roadster. The picture was taken by Gary Ward, who snapped several shots, then had to stop because it started raining.

Sadly, we were unable to stay for very long and enjoy the festivities after our set, because we had to drive back to Chicago and work the next day (although I had taken the next morning off, in anticipation of being dog-tired). So we hit the road about midnight Michigan time and headed back. It was raining pretty steadily, and there are LOTS of semis on I-94 and I-90, the two roads we have to drive on the way back, so my windshield wipers were working furiously. It's an hour-and-a-half drive, so I was grateful for the CDs I'd brought along.

The drive to Chicago was uneventful, if wet. I made an exit off of Lake Shore Drive onto Lawrence Ave. to drop my drums off at Taylor's. It was about 12:30. And that was when I noticed it.

A sort of vibrating dragging coming from the front end. I drove a little more carefully and slowly and noticed the vibrating becoming a distinct thump-thump-thump.

Fuck. My tire was flat. I was very close to Taylor's so I drove the last few blocks, and heaved a sigh of relief at the large parking spot right in front of his house.

He wasn't home yet, so I dropped the drums off in the basement, and told his roommates what had happened, that I was leaving the car (in case he saw it in the morning, and wondered what the hell happened), and cabbed it home. I fell into bed around 2:00 a.m. after all was said and done.

I woke up around 9:00 a.m. and called the Just Tires shop that's not far from me (and close to Taylor's also). I determined that it was possible to have the car brought in and they would change the tires while I was at work that afternoon, and I could pick it up at 5:30.

I walked over to Clark Street and took the bus down to Taylor's, and called the tow truck number I'd written down from my Internet search. They arrived 20 minutes later, loaded the car onto a flatbed trailer and I rode with them over to the tire shop. I had to run to the ATM to get the money, because they only took cash, but $80 later, my hobbled car was parked sideways in the Just Tires lot. I went inside, went through the tire catalogue with Joe, the Just Tires customer consultant, and picked the second-tier tires, not quite top of the line, but very respectable (good for 70,000 miles--it'll take me at least 10 years to drive that much). I left the keys and my phone number and hopped onto the Red Line at Lawrence.

I got a call from Joe at Just Tires around 1:30. "The alignment check (they include it with certain tire purchases) showed that your front tow is out of specifications. We can perform the adjustment for $74.95 (they had told me this was a possibility when I was making my purchase)." I bade him go head with the said repairs.

They called about 2:30 to tell me the car was ready. I said I'd be in at 5:30 to pick it up.

When I got there at 5:30 (on the fucking NOSE, people--do I know how to time a CTA journey or what!), the car was parked neatly (and closely) in an angled space in the side lot. I went inside and settled up, then had to make a 7-point turn to get out of the spot, since it was so close to the building (on one side) and the curb (on the other). As I was pulling out (in the ONLY room I had to move), I did just brush the bumper of a taxicab minivan next to me. I got out just to be sure no damage was done (none was) and headed off to my evening's doings. About $750 poorer, after all the math.

But what the hell, the tires should last about five years. I hope I do!

(I would post pictures of the tires, but, you know, you've seen one set of tires, you've seen them all. They're kind of black and round.)

3 Comments:

Blogger Stephen Rader said...

$750 poorer. Ugh. Sorry about all the hassle with the tires. That sucks. But I LOVE the Joans picture. Brilliant as always!

11:48 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Oh No! you didn't buy the Black Round tires. That is so last year. I think the hexagon shaped ones with golden stars are in this year or is that high heels?
No more of that I may not be around in 5 years stuff buddy! If I say it it's true but you have to go on for a long time, okay? Ed

12:10 PM  
Blogger Aaron said...

Actually, I meant I'd be "dead to the world," as in shut away in a nut barn. That seems to get ever closer the more crazy people make me...but I doubt it. I'll probably poison them first!

Yes, I knew this cash "outlay" was coming with the tires, but I didn't realize how easily gulled I was by "extra warranties" and the like (although honestly, compared to the total price, the warranty was peanuts--and if I run over a nail or a piece of glass, I'll be glad I have it).

2:09 PM  

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