I have a brief, if any, history with car maintenance. When I was 18, the tire guy asked me what kind of tires I would like and I responded very sincerely, "My dad said just make sure they are black." (My dad really did say that by the way and I thought he was being serious.) I also blew up my engine in college because I never checked the oil. The dumbest thing was when I was 22, I innocently cleaned some bird poop (along with the car's paint) off the hood of my brand new Honda Civic with SOS pads. So yeah, I am a major contributor to the stereotype that girls know nothing about cars.

This morning I had to get a smog check done on the Explorer. Simple enough, right? After a "fun" hour of keeping Luke from running into the street, they notified me that they didn't dare run the smog check or the engine would burn up. Then they preceded to tell me all this gobbly gook about hoses, radiators, and leaks. I tried to concentrate and pick out key words to tell Erik, but then I start reading the dumb cartoons they have taped to the walls which causes me to zone out everything they say. (I am aware of how stupid I sound.) They handed me a quote and I said, "Thanks, I'll call my husband and get back to you." I consider myself a very assertive person, but for some reason I crumble in these type of situations because I am so clueless.

Now this is where the intimidation and scare tactics come into play:

Dave (Mean Mechanic): "I wouldn't drive that thing to Mojave (20 miles) or your hose is gonna blow!"

Me: Okay. Uh, thanks for the notice.

Dave (Mean Mechanic): (following me out to my car) Who checks your fluids?

Me: My husband.

Dave (Mean Mechanic): You really should tell your parents, they could check it for you too.

Me: My husband checks my fluids.

Dave (Mean Mechanic): So... nobody does. (Then he started talking in the 3rd person, like weirdos do.) You come here any time and Dave will check your fluids, your tires, anything you need. Dave will take care of you. Dave cares about your car.

I got in my car and started bawling like a little baby. Not only were they telling me my car was in bad shape, but my marriage was destined for failure as well because I was low on radiator fluid.

Long story short, the car is fine and I am never ever going back there again.


  1. Cristin how can you be so bad with cars? I had the same parents you did and I am just fine. When I got married I thought, "great- I am marrying a guy who knows a TON about cars and fixing them!" well guess what? Vak thinks you can go 20k miles without getting an oil change... and that is why I will always drive the nice car and Vak will always drive the junky car. You don't even want to see what our civic looks like now!

  2. That guy was a total jerk. I always feel like a blond ditz at car places. However, we found a really nice place just down the street. They are really honest and never use scare tactics. There has to be some down home, honest, nice mechanic in Tehachapi, right?

  3. Sorry about "Dave." He sounds like a creepy guy, but the story had great entertainment value :) Thanks for the laughs :)

  4. Dave is exactly why I don't like taking our cars in for maintenance. Every time I went to get an oil change or something routine, they would tell me that the flux capacitor needed to be replaced. And then when I tried to relay the message to Kirk he would get frustrated because I couldn't remember what the mechanics told me. He inevitably would have to call the mechanic while at work to sort it all out. I say cut out the middlewoman. I will GLADLY step down.

  5. I love that you cried. I mean, I don't love it, but I totally would have done the same thing. Car people are the WORST!

  6. I've officially turned over all the car stuff to Matt because mean car guys!

  7. You should ask people in your ward who they go to. That is how I found our mechanic. I trust him so much he is babysitting... almost.

  8. I had a great mechanic in Orem. Recommended by my brother's friend's policeman dad. He was the only mechanic that I didn't leave in tears. I hate taking the car in. Avoid it at all costs. I wish all car places were open at night, really really late so my husband could always take the car in.

  9. It's scary how much we have in common. When I was 18 (I had recently stopped dating a mechanic) my friend Amy and I were driving home from grad night at like 5am and my car stared smoking. We thought it was going to blow up so we grabbed our stuff and ran out of the car in the middle of the freeway. Didn't know you were supposed to check the oil or pul oil in for that matter. Bye, bye Volvo! Funny story with you too. I just let the men handle it from now on.



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