Monday, February 19, 2007

The Opposite of King Midas

Everything I touch turns to shit.

The transmission on my car went out today.

"Wait," You say, "Didn't that just happen to you?"

Why yes it did, dear reader. But that was my dad's car. The "extra" family car, the one that was supposed to be in better shape. Once that transmission went out we decided it was worth the money to fix my old Honda. The car that my mechanic said was in "surprisingly good shape."

Is it me? Do I ruin transmissions somehow subliminally with my driving technique? I don't ride the clutch. I don't even rest my hand on the gear shift.

Did I mention that my Japanese student was with me when it went out? During rush hour on one of our busiest roads? And I had to put it in neutral and back it down the hill into an abandoned parking lot? During rush hour? With a young woman* who is in a foreign country for the first time in her life and for whom communication of any kind is a struggle? And I, her supposed guide through this already-confusing place, was in that hysterical half-cry/half-laugh state? Yeah, it was awesome.

I held it together, though. For her sake. I didn't curse. I didn't cry. Hisako** would have been proud of me.

I'm about one exhalation away from a total meltdown, but it hasn't happened yet.

I'm completely fucked.

*Probably the first time I've ever referred to someone as a "young woman." Just further proof that I'm way too old to be killing cars on a regular basis.

**Crazy Japanese boss I once had. She was one of the most bi-polar, psychotic, hilarious, cruel, and insensitive people I've ever known. I sort of loved her, like a wife loves her abusive husband.


carolyn says said...

over here they have all these shows that people can go on and ask for a portion of 1,000,000 pounds being offered by these rich people, you just have to sway a majority of the panel to back you. i bet with your car woes you could totally convince the panel that you should only have brand new cars for the rest of your life, along with a maintenance budget for both you and the car. i'll talk to america and make you guys get that show too and then i'll talk to the producers and make sure you get on. i can pull these strings.

Jeannie said...

When I divorced I gave my husband back the Escalade he'd recently bought me and took back my original Economy Mini Van I'd had. ( I am still glad I gave it back to him -I felt guilty and silly driving it...) But then I lost a job, and in one day met his 25 year old replacement of me and the door of the mini-van fell off while I was driving through McDonald's! My kids were very concerned I was stuck in a perpetual "hysterical half-cry/half-laugh state-!" Very funny use of words Alannah - I love your blog !

Alannah said...

Yeah, can you get on that Carolyn? I'm especially liking the sound of "maintenance budget."

Jeannie - thank you for making me laugh this morning. Because really, in situations like that all you can do is laugh. Your ex sounds like the perfect candidate for the t-shirt I plan on making that says "I'm a cliché."