Wednesday, September 07, 2005

Now there're all these cameras
focused on my face
You would think that they could see it through my skin
Looking for evil
Thinking they could trace it
but evil don't look like anything
evil don't look like anything
Still to come, once I sit down and get writing:
  • China - the ins, the outs, and the inbetweens.
  • The great sickness and the long hospital stay.
  • Battle waged with Muliono's computer virus, and my stunning tactical victory.
Yeah. All that and more, still to come. Really. Wait and see. Brian is a riot. I miss his blog.
Time for a Car-B-Que

$900 to fix my car. Both the power steering well and the pump need to be replaced, and that apparently takes a long time and lots of effort.

According to the blue book, the trade-in-valude of my 1999 Ford Taurus, in its current state (broken) is. . .$0.

The trade in value, assuming it is in decent drivable condition, is between $2300-$2900.

So, for a mere $900 out of pocket, I am increasing its worth by at least another $1400. Looked at in this way, I'm getting a great deal. . .right?


Tuesday, September 06, 2005

I hate going out to eat with foreign folk who grab the check, as they often seem to tip poorly. I mean, not necessarily foreign, but people in general who tip for #$%#. Which is often foreign people. But not always. I worked in food service once, yo. I know how sucky it is to get shafted on tips, so I try to always tip well, unless service was particularly poor.

But when I'm out with someone else, and they grab the check, and they're doing the tipping, but they're hardly even tipping 10%...

I dunno. I could confront them. Which I do sometimes. I could covertly leave some extra tip on the table, which I have also done. It's not the end of the world or anything. I just hate being in that position in the first place.
A Sad Day in the World of Kathy

My car is dying.

Last week, it started making noises. Whenever I turned the wheel it wailed like a dying manatee. Whooooooooeuuuuuuuuuuuu. Whoooooooooeuuuuuuuuuuu. I brought it in to a mechanic who checked the power steering fluid, looked at it briefly, and said, "Ford power steering pumps have a tendancy to get noisy when they get older. That's all it is. Nothing to worry about," and sent me home.

A few days later, the power steering stopped working entirely. I mean, you can sort of steer the car. When it is moving. If you use all your strength, and are content with the worst turning radius ever.

If you want to get into or out of parallel parking... well, it's an adventure.

There was no place to bring the car the last several days, being a holdiday weekend and all, but I dropped the car off at the shop this morning. (A different shop, a different mechanic. This one highly rated by the folks at car talk.)

I don't have an estimate yet, but the mechanic thinks it will be expensive.

The blue book says the trade in value for my car is somewhere between $2300 and $2900. Retail value is around $6000, but I assume it would be much more difficult to sell it for retail value?

So here are the big questions weighing on my mind: at what point, in the case of expensive repairs, is it no longer worth it to shell out for the repairs? How expensive is too expensive? What do you all do when your cars get old and start dying?