Today, my one task was to drive to Westwood to pick up some SAT supplies, spend 20 minutes there, then drive back. Westwood is only about 17 miles away, but it was raining and it was also Friday, notoriously the worst day to drive in Los Angeles. In fact, I have a policy of never driving on Fridays at all. I'm currently seeking a religion that has a Friday Sabbath, to give this policy some added zeal, but so far I haven't been able to find one.
When I left the house at 11:30am and told Kolleen I'd be back around 4pm, I was kind of joking. But when I returned at 4:12pm in the rain with a borrowed car, I wasn't joking anymore. The Spacemobile broke down again, this time on the 405 about 2 miles north of the dealership I was really hoping it could coast to.
It was a typical Spacemobile breakdown - in fact I'm so bored with the Spacemobile breaking down by this point that I don't even want to write about it. The only interesting thing was that two different tow-trucks and a fire truck pulled over to help me before the AAA driver got there, resulting in an unneeded entourage along the highway that only succeeded in causing a traffic jam of people slowing down to watch. The Spacemobile doesn't deserve that much attention. It deserves to be unceremoniously catapulted into a swamp.
The other cool thing was that, while I was waiting, I got a call from Nick Liskey.
"Paul," he said. "You alright?"
"Yeah, man... basically. What's up?"
"Well, Angie just called me and said she saw a turquoise Spacemobile with Minnesota plates on the side of the 405. Do you need a ride somewhere?"
Indeed I did, and indeed Nick and Angie Liskey were saintly enough to help me. For that they will be taken out to dinner.
Just to catalogue, here's the current tally of how many times the Spacemobile has been towed, by AAA, in the past 4 years:
2002 - 2
2003 - 5
2004 - 3
2005 - 1
Me and my abominable blue van might be their best customers. And by best, I mean worst.