Roll The Bones…!

A pretty direct metaphor for my commute on the first day.

A pretty direct metaphor for my commute on the first day.

The title of today’s post is from a Rush song, about taking risks and gambling. The title of that song, in turn, came from a euphemism, “roll the bones” which is pretty much synonymous with, “roll the dice.” It made a nice triple meaning here, with both the idea of “rolling out” on the freeway, taking risks, and actually just pretty much rolling the dice.

Just when you think a drama is done, you get an epilogue. Or additional chapter, like Civil War II No. 8, just solicited from Marvel Comics. Or even sometimes a play where some people thought they were getting a novel, a la J.K. Rowling.

Driving to school, day one, on the 10 Freeway East, my transmission slipped out of gear…from third to first. By the way, that’s both scary and intense, although I leave early enough that it wasn’t that dangerous. There was a giant semi behind me, which scared the @#$% out of me, to be sure. I pulled over, and restarted the car on the shoulder, conveniently at the La Cienega exit by my preferred mechanic, Culver Automotive.

I limped in there, and handed the car over, having been promptly given a loaner. that would be represented by the Ghost Rider arriving in the nick of time, on his insano bike from the seventies. We are doing a full transmission overhaul, because that’s pretty much what’s needed.

I got to school, and all went well, so that’s a good thing. The car is in the hands of competent mechanics who will set it right, so that’s also a good thing. No worries.

Readers are thinking now though…wasn’t there a long plot line/drama about just this problem? Needing a new transmission, or a rebuild? You’re right, there was. At that point, I had taken the car to a closer shop, that had claimed to be “Mercedes Specialists.” Obviously, they were not. That’s where I drew the title of the post from…the gamble of trying any new mechanic, and the gamble that the repairs done by that dubious mechanic (not the fine people at Culver Automotive) would hold out for a length of time that was even a significant portion of the warranty.

Obviously, that didn’t happen.

To summarize the drama with the “new shop”…they first outsourced the job, and then tried to resolve it themselves, among other misdiagnosis and parts dramas. Since taking the car back to Culver Automotive, we have been kind of expecting this…a failure of the repairs that the “new shop” said that they did.

The thing is…the first shop (which I am still tactfully not naming) gives a Two Year warranty on their work. It has been only Two MONTHS. While driving to work in my loaner, I called and made this very, very clear to the owner and management. I certainly did NOT want them to touch my car again, but at the same time, I paid for a repaired transmission, and felt that they should stand by their work. Everyone in the situation agreed that they should not, in fact, have taken on the job.

My solution was this…they needed to make it right, and cover the cost of work done at Culver Automotive, to do the job I brought them in March, and they failed to do correctly over a period of months. It’s the easiest way to go, and gets me out of their hair forever. I have not yet heard back on the final ruling from that shop whether they agree with this…but considering that they initially outsourced my transmission job, this seems to make a lot of sense.

Honestly…it almost doesn’t matter what the ruling is. If it comes down that they won’t stand by their work and their word, I’m going to need to open a complaint with Better Business Bureau and the Automobile Club (AAA), and move forward from there. At that point…I won’t keep tactfully leaving the names untold, but instead will take the tale, edit it, and post it to every single review site that I can find.

Either way, in a week, all will be well, and I didn’t get myself killed on the freeway.

Oddly, it made the First Day of school weirdly festive. All of this drama happened on the way to work, so the day itself was almost more charming and excellent, with students cheerfully greeting me, and asking after my summer. With the new young people stepping in with a nervous smile, and me being potentially nicer than usual, because really, nothing bad happened, and all problems like transmissions have solutions.

Without speech balloons.

Without speech balloons.

Really, it came down to being about the important things. Not having an awful accident, important. The guys at Culver Automotive helping me out, fixing up my stuff, and getting me to work on time with a smile…that’s important. The first day of school…important. The excellent reception, the good feelings between students and myself…that’s important.

Ultimately, it’s important that people are honest, and stand by their work. I’m talking to you, other auto shop in Palms. Even if I co opted that into a “teachable moment” about grading in class…those guys need to stand by their work, and shoot straight, because that’s important too.

You can be sure I’ll run that one down, True Believers. It’s what I do.


2 thoughts on “Roll The Bones…!

  1. If you ever decide to invest in a new vehicle, I bought a Subaru Legacy earlier this year and really like it. I’m not trying to sell you my car, just recommend the brand.

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