When it comes to car repair, you don’t usually get out cheap. This weekend I spent a staggering amount of money getting the brakes fixed on my car and my wife’s car. Mine needed new brake pads and, although I replaced the ABS module on my own with much swearing and skinned knuckles, brake pads are beyond my time and interest level. My wife’s car is a funny story. Funny in the way that you giggle with glee when you drive it and the brake pedal depresses to the floor. Hee hee ha ha! Turns out her master cylinder had failed and leaked out all the fluid. And here’s why THAT is so funny: we had the master cylinder replaced two years ago because it had failed. What are the chances that you would go through a second master cylinder so quickly? In our house it’s 100%. So my Saturday was all about fielding calls from the auto shop and hearing the cash register in my head ding open while hands made a mad scrabble for the cash. You know that feeling when you think you have control over something and so many things pile up against you that you roll over and just let it happen? At some point they called about some additional part breaking, another adjustment needed and I thought, “How about I just unfasten my pants to make this easier for both of us.”
Therefore you can imagine my level of excitement this morning when I pulled up to a stoplight and saw white smoke billowing out from the wheel wells. I remember the mechanic saying something about a glaze on the brake pads needing to be worn off…protective something or other… take it easy…few thousand miles…perfectly normal…lemme run that credit card for you. If I had any level of concern I would have leapt from the car to see if the brakes were on fire, ushered my wife out of the car to a safe distance away, and waved traffic on while dialing the fire department with my free hand. Instead I put the air on’ recirculate’ and tried not to make eye contact with other drivers. I love seeing my money go up in smoke!