Thursday, September 07, 2006

Part II - The Tire

Here is the much-anticipated ending to my dear friend's tire problems discussed in an earlier post - as told to me.

Friday morning I woke up with every intention of heading over to Firestone first-thing to have that pesky screw removed from my tire. The idea was that I would repair the tire early so Kelly and I could get on the road to Charleston at a decent time. Unfortunately, I was 3/4 of the way through The Devil Wears Prada and didn't feel like getting off the couch to have a stupid tire repaired. Priorities.

I guess it was a little after noon when I finally headed over to Firestone to put in my tire repair request. The hairy little guy immediately asked if I had "run-flat" tires and honestly, I really thought I did. I mean, one of them is flat, but its still running, right?

I maintained that line of reasoning until he explained (in not the nicest voice) that I most definitely did not have run-flat tires.

In an attempt to make him laugh I said, "Hey what do I know? I'm a girl!" He didn't appreciate my attempt at humor and I actually think I might have offended him on some level; whatever level you can offend a man named "Claude" on. We then had a brief exchange regarding my options at which point I asked, "how long I would have to wait for the tire to be repaired?" To which he replied, "over an hour." I thought to myself, "over an hour! Are you kidding me? I have a five-hour drive in front of me!"

Unfortunately, "thinking to myself" and "talking through my mouth" are quite often one and the same.

Mr. Harry Neckline did his best to mimic me and informed me that he was quite serious and that there were "lots of people with nails in their tires before me." I said "thanks!" and started to get in the car. He looked at me shocked and asked, "where I thought I was going?" I told him that there HAD to be another shop that could repair my tire in under an hour.

I wished him a fabulous weekend as I brushed him back with the mirror on my way out.

I called my step-dad and told him that I had a feeling, deep in my gut, that the tire would be okay for the five-hour drive to Charleston. I also called Kelly to tell her I was on my way to get her, and we were going to be driving on the tire with a screw in it. She seemed to have no problem with that proposition which, in retrospect, concerns me for her.

I guess it was about 2:30 pm when we got on the interstate. I would estimate that we made it approximately 43 minutes down the road before that stupid tire alarm went off again.

Are you kidding me?!?!? What about my gut feeling?!?!

We decide to grab a bite to eat and I filled the tire while Kelly sat in the car (complaining). The wall of the tire said something about 51, so I figured that meant I was supposed to fill it to 51, right?

I reset the alarm and we got going again. We were making much better time, so I decided to call my parents. I explained to Mom that I filled the tire to 51 since the wall said 51. Her high pitched "Are you kidding Paula?!!" caused me to wonder if I had, indeed, put too much air in the tire.

"Pull off immediately and let 15 lbs of air out of that tire. Are you crazy? If you hit a bump that tire is going to pop!"

No, I am not crazy, but I do have a schedule to keep and the stupid tire was not helping matters.

Kelly and I pulled off at the next exit whereupon Kelly produced a tire gauge that had apparently been hidden somewhere on her person. I know I certainly don't have one. The air pressure readings in each tire were 50, 30, 40, and 40, respectively. Averaging that out equates to about 40 so I figured we were okay. Kelly briefly perused the owners manual and stated that we "might have overfilled 3 of the 4 tires and OH MAN TURN IT UP PAULA!! TURN IT UP PAULA!! THAT’S THE NEW KEEN SONG!!"

I quickly moved from tire to tire and let the air back out.

While I was in the midst of that delicate manouver a huge 4X4 work truck with a bunch of guys in it pulled over onto the shoulder. Since I was busy working on the tires; I told Kelly that she had to tell the guys we were okay.

When the guys rolled up and asked what was going on, Kelly told them that we "have too much air."

I was about to fall on the ground laughing so I kept my face hidden behind one of the rims and pretended to be studying something complicated in the undercarriage. They really couldn't understand what Kelly was saying through the 110-decibel Keen song and her simultaneous tears and laughter.

She finally mumbled something to the effect that we "really were okay" and they headed on down the road in a cloud of testosterone and illegal emissions.

I am happy to report that we finally made it to Charleston a few hours later with no additional alarms, bells, or whistles of any kind.

My lessons learned during this trip:

1. I really shouldn't have a drivers license.
2. I shouldn't own a motorized conveyance of any kind.
3. My friends trust my judgment way more than they should.
4. My reasoning ability is somewhat more limited than I had anticipated.

Hope to see you on I-85 or 400 soon!


1 comment:

Jamie Waddy said...

Oh my gosh that was one of the funniest stories ive ever read! haha!