Monday, March 1, 2010

Dead Battery

I hate the feeling that comes over me when the car won't start.

This morning I got in the car to leave for work. I turned the key in the ignition and right away knew the engine wasn't going to turn over enough to start up.

It was too early to do anything about it since no stores were open, so I decided to work from home today. Since Julie was home, later in the morning I was able to use her car to jump start mine - it still took a long time to start - and then drive to my mechanic. Thankfully I was home when this happened, and Julie was too, so that I didn't need to call AAA.

I dropped off the car and then she brought me back. Later we had an unhealthy lunch at McD after which she dropped me back at the mechanic to pick up my car. I much appreciated the car starting right up when I turned the key this time!

I didn't really miss anything in the office. A couple people weren't there so others had to scramble to cover for them; the outgoing phone lines weren't working; the connection between my computer and work went down for a while; the internet was out at work. Haha.. what a day.

As I drove back home from the mechanic I was thinking now gee, wouldn't it be nice to be able to just go wherever I needed to go during the day? Well, I would hope it wouldn't have to be to the garage or to some other place because something needed fixing, but just the freedom to do something whenever you want to is nice, isn't it?

Actually, I guess it is pretty nice that I was able to elect to work at home and also take care of replacing the battery today. That's a nice degree of freedom right there. But then the more you get, the more you want..

On another note, yesterday a few of us were discussing the difference between teaching and coaching. It was pointed out that a coach doesn't necessarily have to be able to demonstrate the subject matter (like an ice skating coach doesn't have to go on the ice to show what he or she is talking about, or a football coach doesn't have to run a play), whereas a teacher would.

So one guy told us how his wife is a good example. She's never taken out the trash but yet she is excellent at coaching him on how to do it.


Anonymous said...

What? No Costco battery? Rickie!!!

I had a dead battery on our minivan last week. I only use it for bike riding so the battery gets hammered. I don't have a jumper cable as mine is back east with the kids at school. So I have to do the shift interlock override to push the Honda out of the garage so the AAA can jump it. I then have to suffer through a 10 minute sales pitch for a new battery. I kept telling the guy that Costco will replace it for free. Hard for them to understand that. Also hard for them to understand that I had seen more dead batteries in a month in a prior life than any AAA battery truck driver will ever see. 52 million pounds of batteries one month. I decide to go to Wallyworld for a jumper cable. The monster cable version is sold out. A red tag version with almost monster size wire, a built in surge suppressor, polarity protection and made by Michelin is 15 bucks red tagged from $40. Turns out it sucks as it will not jump a dead battery. Yep, in order to close an internal relay contact inside the cables both batteries must have a minimum voltage. I return the cables. I put some hearing protection on and replace the battery. The Honda does not like to be jumped or have its battery replaced. The alarm goes off and then the electronics have to have their codes reentered. Two sets of 10 numbers. After all that, the car asked to be driven to an open area away from buildings and idled for "up to 10 minutes." This is to set up a home position. I did it in the driveway for 15 and gave up as I did not want to ruin the catalytic converter. I tried with just the ignition on and that was an epic fail. Later I tried in the parking lot of a bank and a security guard came out to ask me what I was doing. I told him I was following the warning on the dash to reset the navigation system and that the GPS had to locate at least three satellites in the constellation. I might as well have told him I Obama was going to come by in a few minutes and I wanted to get a good photograph. So what's the point? If you have a Costco battery die before it turns 37 months old, you get all your money back. However, the old core charge was $5, the new core charge is $9 and its a real pain in the butt.

Rickie Miyake said...

Well that's the difference between you and me.. my whole life, I've never changed a car battery myself! Always had it done by the store or garage. That's why I don't buy batteries from Costco (or do they install it for you? If so, then all these years I've been avoiding them for nothing!). I think I am still like what my 1st or 2nd grade teacher wrote about me in my student file - "gets very upset if he gets dirty." Haha..