“Now you can smash all the windows that you want, all you really need are some friends and a rock.”– Dead Kennedys
The universe, while being such a bro to me a few months ago stringing meaning and understanding along in ways that have been impossible to ignore, has recently decided to fuck me hard with a series of semi-related and unfortunate events. I totally hate the universe right now. It can go fuck itself for all I care.
Firstly, let me mention that our newest car, a Ford Focus Electric, has been dead and at the Ford dealership for three weeks now. Why? I don’t know. It’s a fully electric car and when it shits out it shits out in a way that is impossible for the home mechanic such as myself to repair. This was the risk of buying an electric car in 2016: I bought it to be a pioneer on the new frontier of clean, efficient, battery-only vehicles (popularly abbreviated as BEV: battery electric vehicle) and I can’t say that I’ve been wrong about that fact. Trying to get an EV fixed, even in 2019, does feel like the frontier. No one knows a damn thing about them so it’s always back to the dealership for any serious repairs. So far they’ve quoted me $1,300 for the initial repair (and with my insurance deductible that I’ve frugally set at $1,000 to rake in a low premium payment, I’m basically fucked) and they’ve found another issue that they’ve been working on for a week without any update. (I really hope the main drive battery has a fatal flaw; under Ford’s warranty I might get a brand new battery out of this bullshit.)
Double shifting in the meantime — working hellish hours at UPS delivering everyone’s bullshit Christmas packages — didn’t leave me with much choice in what to drive. I still needed to get to work and even more so now that I needed to foot the bill for the EV to be repaired. Luckily we have a derelict and non-insured 1997 Saturn SL-2 sitting around that I was able to fire up and drive to work illegally. It also has no exhaust just to really paint the picture here of how shitty this car is. I literally wore earplugs on my way to work. Gotta protect your hearing, right?
Luckily, a friend at work has had sympathy and has been driving me around on break. Why take two cars when one is illegal to go eat shitty fast food when you can take a single legal car? Anyways, between shifts we seen this asshole driving around:
The picture might not be the best quality but it should be obvious that all of this person’s windows have been smashed the fuck out. Sides, back, and even the front windshield had been completely destroyed with only the front window still present. (Front windows are coated in something so if they do smash in an accident you don’t get your face, neck, and other parts of your body sliced up by flying glass. The window was fucked up, but still intact.) Funnily enough, as we seen the side of the vehicle we realized that not all the windows were destroyed: the driver’s side window was unharmed which was hilarious to see. They even had it rolled up as if that singular window could keep the interior warm while driving around in the Illinois winter. The coolest part was probably how they didn’t even try to clean up the debris, the busted glass shards were still futilely hanging in place as if the owners were indifferent or even proud of having their vehicle fucked up so badly. We had a ton of laughs about this person’s vehicle and misfortune and wonder who exactly they pissed off. Were they cheating with someone and their spouse found out? Did they owe someone a lot of money? You have to pay off those gambling debts and drug dealers, guys.
As a totally unrelated note that actually is related, I’ve been listening to a fuckton of Dead Kennedys lately, especially the song “Riot.” I really think it’s one of their best, if not the best, song by them. It starts off slow enough but has some serious building energy where by the end of the song the band is just going of the fucking rails. It’s nuts. It’s also a terribly ugly song with a disgusting bass line driving the entire affair, but it all works in such a visceral way.
The song is about rioting (huh…), and how the people who riot end up getting turned away from the ones who really matter, the corporate overlords that keep them fiscally enslaved and stuck in their hourly jobs, and end up fucking up their own neighborhoods. It’s full of fun lines like “Now you can smash all the windows that you want, all you really need are some friends and a rock.” Shit. I’ve been listening to it on the way to work to get fucking hyped and have been joking about busting windows with bricks/rocks because it’s the punkest thing ever. Yeah, let’s smash shit! Gimme a fucking rock or a brick! I’ll go find my supervisor’s supervisor’s manager and smash his goddamn windows out. He’s the real slave-driver!
And then I was fucked by the universe in a cruel bit of irony. I came outside one day to see this sight on the beloved Saturn:
Well shit. We called the cops and he didn’t do a fucking thing (because what could he do?) but did suggest that insurance should cover it. “Well it’s not insured. It just sits here as a spare,” I said. I didn’t admit to taking the car to work uninsured because I’m not stupid, and the cop gave me a look that said, “Well, you’re fucked without insurance.” I can’t even drive it now sans-window because of admitting to the cop that I didn’t drive it. It would be pretty obvious if the same cop seen it barreling down the road, loud as hell, and without a window that I was the guy with the uninsured car. Guess I’d have to foot the bill for the Ford EV and the Saturn’s window. Raking in all the extra money during Christmas seemed much less appealing with the impending $1,500 in possible repairs.
The next night we discovered the neighbor’s car windows were also smashed. These were some bold motherfuckers roaming the neighborhood. I fantasized about catching the culprit(s) and violently throwing them to the ground and letting my temper take hold as I beat them to a pulp. I’m talking blatantly fantasizing about torture here: dragging them back to the house to pepper spray them in the face or pull their fingernails out. Tie them up in the basement and kick them in the balls. Maybe steal any sort of cash in their wallets or pockets, because who would the cops believe anyways? Me, the victim of a crime, or some punkass teens who have been smashing windows for something to do? Sadly after two weeks they haven’t returned and I haven’t been able to beat some ass. But boy when I hear a sound outside my adrenaline goes haywire.
Luckily we have four vehicles at our house. The Saturn was out with a busted window and the Ford EV was doing who the hell knows what at the dealership, while our Dodge Caravan and Dodge Ram were still going strong. Or were they? A few days later we discovered the Ram had a dead battery and jumping the thing didn’t help: the battery was legit shot. That was an easy fix though. But today? I hopped in the Caravan, started it, and noticed the power steering wasn’t working. “No big deal,” I thought. Then I noticed the lights were kinda dim and checked the voltage via a Bluetooth stereo cigarette lighter plug-in thingy: 11.8 volts. The battery wasn’t charging. The issue seemed to clear up on its own and considering the power steering issue points to a problem with the drive belt, but I haven’t even started to troubleshoot the problem yet. I just don’t even care to think about it yet.
A common bullshit saying is that, “when it rains, it pours,” and while I shit on stupid sayings like that all the time, well, this is a perfect example of it. The Ford EV dying during the worst time of the year, the Saturn getting its window smashed out after seeing someone driving with their windows smashed out — and joking about it — all why listening to the Dead Kennedys screaming about smashing glass with rocks/bricks at least four times a day. Having the neighbor’s also inherit our bad karma didn’t feel very good either. Like I felt like my bad karma was the real cause of their smashed window. (I don’t even know why I have bad karma; I donated $100 to Team Trees like two weeks ago.) Being unable to get revenge on the window smashers. Discovering the Ram with its dead battery and finding an impending issue with our Caravan: when will we stop getting shit on?