Wednesday, September 5, 2012


On the ever-increasing list of things that frost my cupcakes is the unpleasant trips to the dealership for car servicing.  (Yes, this is a minor annoyance compared to the travails of the Bangladeshi rope farmer, or worse, the Bangladeshi rope farmer trainee.  But if everything has to be compared to that guy, then no one could complain about anything)  Besides waiting to hear about whatever expensive repair you have to undergo, there's the use of the infamous "loaner."

Before you get the loaner, the first thing you learn is that any scratches or damage will be covered by you personally, so you'll be driving it a bit more on edge than you would with your own car.  If I got a small dent or scratch on my car, I'd probably live with it--all that matters is that it drives!  But who knows what a small scratch to a loaner might cost?  Perhaps some ruffian decides to give the paint job a little "key action" and write "da moon rulez number 1" on the side of the car--hilarious as that would look, it could cost a pretty penny.  So I'm never entirely at ease when I have the loaner.

Plus, it requires quickly learning about a totally new car very quickly.  I still need to get home and get to work, of course, and did I mention that the D.C. area's drivers are a conglomeration of incredibly stupid jackholes who all deserve permanent exile to northern Canada where the only things they could slam into are penguins?  (Yes, the zoos in northern Canada have many penguin exhibits.  I know they're native to Antarctica)

Sure, you can spend about five minutes getting the seat and mirrors right and figuring out how to do keyless ignition (which totally sucks, by the way.  What jerk ever said "oh I hate keys so much!  It's so hard to turn a key!  Give me a button anytime!") and some weird gearshift that's completely different from your usual car.  But then, once on the road, you realize you need to use the headlamps, or wipers, or defogger.  Oh, and look, there's barely any gas in it, we may have to put some in--which side is the gas tank on?  Didn't check before getting on the highway!

And of course, acceleration and braking are always just different enough that you're doing a bit of sudden starts and stops, and parking of course is trickier if the loaner is bigger or wider than you're used to.  Driving a loaner sucks, at first.

Then, by the next day, you have the hang of it, and actually sort of like the loaner (dealership loaners are much newer than your usual car, when your usual car is a decade old).  Just in time to find out your car is ready and you have to return it.


  1. Hint: There is a little arrow next to the gas light/indicator that shows what side the gas tank is on in a car. Most people never notice it, but it is helpful when driving a car you are not used to.

  2. Thanks! I'll look for that next time. It makes sense to have that but I wouldn't be surprised if a lot of people weren't aware of it.