February 7, 2006


My semicharmed life? Yesterday, that seemed applicable. Today? Not so much.

It started with white smoke and ended in tears.

I briefly mentioned yesterday that my car is in the shop and I am, as they say, screwed. Probably. Most likely. I don't know. It has been reported (from my friendly "service advisor") that my engine is blown. Whatever that means. I need a new engine.


On our way home from Long Beach the other night, the oil pressure light came on and massive amounts of white smoke came shooting out of the exhaust. I thought it meant a new pope was elected, but no, it was something much more sinister than that. We had it towed and Mr. Q's lovely dad came to pick up his stranded children.

Yesterday, the service guy sounded so optimistic. A bad turbo! No biggie. It's covered under the warranty.

Today, his voice sounded different. He was suddenly very aloof and not as pal-sy as usual. I am checking your service history... your car's engine has suffered... catastrophic failure ...and it was, I'm sorry to say, fatal.... new engine... district manager... authorization... let you know.

My warranty? It remains to be seen whether it will cover a new engine. It appears that I didn't get the oil changed once when I should have. Once. Fuck me. They're checking into it and getting authorization right now. I'm guessing they'll say I ruined the engine, despite the fact that I've gotten all my other oil changes in a timely manner and I've made my best effort to maintain the engine. And anyway, should an engine really be permanently damaged at 89K miles just from skipping one oil change two years ago? I don't think so. It's not like I drove it with no oil. I don't understand.

The worst part of this is I probably wouldn't even have this car if my last one hadn't been totalled by a red-light-running street sweeper two years ago. I have enjoyed this car (a 2001 Saab 9-5), but it has been in the shop about once a month since August. Almost everything has been covered under the warranty, but I've been scared about what is going to happen after the warranty expires. I've been planning on trading it in at my first opportunity (probably this summer). Now, I'll have to get a new engine before I even do that which will put me upside down AND in the hole even more. < cartman> GAWDDAMMIT!!! < /cartman>

I still don't know what the outcome is going to be. I am distraught and depressed. And imagining the worst. Which is ironic, because just this morning I gave 1B* advice on the topic of positive thinking. But I'll be damned if it works in every case! Sorry to disappoint, B*!

Anyway, I know that everything will work out. It always does. But in the meantime, I am feeling awful about it. I know it's just a car and all, but I am really not equipped to deal with a problem of this magnitude just now. If you want to send money to the "Ms. Q Wants a New Car Fund", please don't let me stop you!! I figure if 10,000 people give me a dollar, I could put a fat down payment on something new. Spread the word!*** I really like the new Honda Civic Si, or Civic Hybrid. Eh. I'd settle for a bicycle at this point. I'm done with luxury cars for a while.

*** Just kidding. I know it's been done before. I was just trying to make myself laugh. It almost worked.



At 18:04, Blogger my imperfect offering said...

Oh, NOOOO!!! Now I feel really bad for grousing about my silly little tire pressure indicator. heheh I remember a co-worker saying once that his wife's Saab was in and out of the shop every month, that it is just the nature of the Saab, so your story reinforces to me that I shall never own one. At any rate, I am sorry for your loss, and I will say a prayer that the Warranty Gods smile upon you and give you a new engine. :)

At 20:11, Blogger Cat said...

Well, I have a Jimmy that's sitting in the driveway now with a blown engine. I hate it. It sure saves on gas though.

We'll have to get it fixed next month. I have a car but it's not 4-wheel drive so it doesn't go through snow well. My Jimmy (I like older vehicles...have a passion for this one) is my baby and I miss her! I even named my truck -- but I know that soon I'll be able to drive in snow and pull poor tourists from ditches.

Meow - hope things get better!

At 21:07, Blogger luckybuzz said...

More sinister than a new pope? That's bad. :)

But so sorry about the car...I don't have one, but I might have some walking shoes I can pass along...

At 23:20, Blogger Barbara said...

I have a 17 year old Mazda that you are welcome to have if I ever get a new car. The driver's side door doesn't open from the outside and the interior lights don't work but she runs like a dream!

At 06:04, Blogger BrightStar said...

LOL @ you thought it meant a new pope was elected! Classic.

At least you've managed to maintain a sense of humor. I hope things work out; sounds stressful.

At 06:25, Anonymous laura said...

I'm holding out for a Honda Fit. They are being released in April, about $14k, about 38 mpg. And they are available in a nice periwinkle blue. Anyway, car problems SUCK the big one - sorry you are stressing out about, but I promise you this: it'll all work out.

At 23:49, Blogger Oliver said...

Sorry to hear about your car - hope it all gets sorted soon.


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