Oh my gash

Scratches, scratches, and more scratches. It has been more than a month since I have been dealing with lots of it, left and right, front and back. Some of unknown reason, some almost obvious. The most recent is a huge scrape on my front left bumper which I noticed after we returned home from watching Batman V Superman. It is the nastiest so far since we had the car as applying rubbing compound just didn’t fix it this time.

A close inspection points to only one culprit–the wall perpendicular to our parking space. When the snafu happened wasn’t immediately clear though. Initially, I thought it was on our way back–it was my first time to back up into the tight space on a night time plus Marcus kept on annoying me with his series of questions about Batman, past and present. However, things begin to fit like a puzzle the next morning.

Curious where the bumper actually hit, I checked my sister-in-law’s wall again when I gave Marcus a stroll in his wheelchair. Nothing was obvious at first, the wall and its paint seem intact just like after I checked last night.

A few seconds of head scratching (that word again) soon pointed to a tell-tale clump of gray paint. I felt like Frank Hardy. The scrape shows that the bumper made contact on my way out which explains why a guy at the car wash where we stopped by before proceeding to the mall asked what happened to the car. I dismissed his inquiry, didn’t even bother to check the car, thinking he was referring to a damage on the rear door–one that happened more than three years ago in the same area but due to a tree’s fault.

So it wasn’t Marcus after all. My ego scratched.

I do cringe at this new unsightly mark on my front end but I know that I’ll get over it soon. It’s just like how it was with some other scratches made by envious neighbors, playful kids, careless shoppers, disappointed beggars, reckless bikers and motorcycle riders and cats, dogs, and chickens included. Name it, the car has it.

The bright side here is that I had something to draft at a parking lot while waiting for someone. I offered to drive for my brother-in-law and his family for the wedding they attended to this Easter Sunday which by the way is the main reason I decided to leave the house and have the car washed on the afternoon the car scraped the wall–and the very next day after I said the car survived unscathed its week of being parked in a tight space. Spoke too soon. Ti abi.

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Not all scratch stories are the same.

The day we moved into our new house, we observed details that seem off: the windows’ screen frames were interchanged; bits of screen were in the sliding window’s rail; a portion of the wall had uneven gray patches; and, the front door had scratches on the bottom part. All seem to be hints of sloppy workmanship showing up. But it wasn’t.

We soon learned that someone left the dog unnoticed inside the house and it eventually panicked and tried to escape and made a total mess like the Tasmanian Devil. Fortunately, help was available in short notice and everything was restored somehow. The dog now stays just outside our front door serving as our own sentry.

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Mood: 2/10 Honks! (Back online. We now have internet connection.)

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Parking Confusion

Isn’t it strange that objects in the mirror are closer than they appear but they are actually farther when seen through the rear window?

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I am done reading Tom Vanderbilt’s Traffic (How We Drive) and I have already drafted a book review which I wrote on my Starbucks 2012 planner (Finally, it has been used, however, late).

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Mood: 3/10 (Noontime. Tipsy. Experimenting with blog post format.)

Of Dead Batteries And Good Samaritans

Ever had one of those problems wherein you search the internet and the only solution you’ll find is one that seems absurd? Well, I got one lately. This is about the mysterious case of our Honda City which happened right after its battery got totally drained at the NAIA 3′s parking lot. Inexplicably, the car’s driver side window stopped its automatic function even after the battery has been fully charged. I tried moving it up and down thinking that it has gotten stuck due to being left idle for more than half a month but the futile exercise didn’t solve the problem. The following day, I also opened the door panel in an attempt to see the window mechanism but I was prevented by the Honda’s complicated door design plus the thought that I’d do more harm than good.

Frustrated, defeated, and embarrassed by the fact that this is supposed to be one simple problem normally solved by a WD40, I googled for an answer before going to bed. As expected, Google presented me with various answers but only one caught my attention. About.com’s Honda Power Window and Locks Fix Fix was the most brief–it only suggests 3 quick steps:

  1. Switch off Ignition
  2. Set intermittent wiper set to middle position
  3. Switch ignition back on

Even if the website mentions that this process is meant to reset the MCU, I was doubtful that it will work so I slept that night with just one question, “How can an intermittent wiper be connected to the window?” Even so, the solution proved its worth the very next day. Just after doing the abovementioned procedure, I was shaking my head in disbelief when the automatic window came back to life like some mechanical Lazarus. I tested and then re-tested the window and yes, the ridiculous solution does work.

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My recent experience at the NAIA 3 parking, although I expected the battery being drain after leaving the car at the parking lot for weeks, gave me some important lessons:

  1. Park the car in a position wherein jumpstarting would be easier. For example, do not park facing the wall since this will require you to push it all the way back so it faces the “battery source” car especially if the jumpstart cable is short. Good thing I parked mine this way, else it would have been a longer night for the three of us.
  2. After jumpstarting the car, it is best to leave it idling or drive for an hour before totally shutting off the engine. I learned about this the hard way, when I turned the engine off just more than ten minutes since Albert Sebastian (who I soon learned is a reporter of Radyo ng Bayan DZRB) assisted me at the airport’s parking lot. Good thing, the crew of McDonald’s where I stopped pushed my car to a nearby Total gas station where another total stranger by the name of Jet didn’t hesitate to help me jumpstart my car again.
  3. Take note of Motolite’s 24-hour delivery number just in case you need further help – like a completely dead battery. Motolite’s Anytime, Anywhere Delivery number is (02)3706686.
  4. Last but not the least, don’t hesitate to ask for help. Some may reject you but others ever willing to help will be there soon.

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Mood: 3/10 Honks! (I will need to find a helmet for Marcus. He had his first fall from his new bike this afternoon.)