Monday, February 12, 2007


if my car had a face, i'd give it a black eye.

for the past couple months, my car has had power issues. i've come out to a dead battery about a half dozen times since thanksgiving. it seems as though something is pulling power when its not running so if i don't drive it for an extended period of time, its drained dead. it happens at random times so its hard to predict and no one seems to be able to pinpoint the voltage gobbler.

due to this situation, this morning found me standing in the cold of winter hoping for a hand from a stranger. after opening the door and realizing the interior light didn't illuminate, i popped the trunk and grabbed my jumper cables. i bought a jump start battery pack about a month ago but it never worked (at least not on my hog. on other's cars, it never fails). with the hood open, i stood beside my car, a few feet out into the street, cables under arm or tossed over my shoulder. i mustered the most pathetic facial expression possible and held it as each car came down my street. i tried to visually convey how cold it was. the more guilt the better.

car after car after car passed by. many times, once they saw me and realized the situation they were approaching, they gunned it. more cars and still no one stops. i couldn't have expressed in any clearer way that i was in distress. i stood there hoping. another car. a half hour went by. that turned into an hour. 90 minutes elapsed and nothing. i was on the verge of throwing money at motorists to get them to stop when finally i met a good samaritan. it wasn't until an hour and 40 after i lifted the hood that someone pulled over and asked if i needed help.

"yes! thanks so, so, so much! you're really helping me out of a jam! really, thanks! i didn't think anyone would help me out! thank you! i didn't know how much longer i could handle this wind. thanks again! bless you!"

me, of all people, said "bless you", and she didn't even sneeze.

i went on about good karma. how it all comes around. that her kindness will be rewarded.

as joyous as i was for five miutes, it wasn't long before i remembered the morning that preceded it. we all want peace on earth but what happened to good will towards men? i finally got the juice i needed to get where i had to go, but it took almost two hours. 30 some odds drivers whizzed past, turning their heads away. shielding their eyes behind their warm hands as if they didn't notice me. it's a good deed that wouldn't be more than a 4 or 5 minute sacrifice of time. its not as though i appeared threatening. i've never ran for my life from a guy in a sports coat wielding yellow rubber wires. especially not at 9:00 in the morning in 10 degree weather. actually, they don't even have to get out of the comfort and heat of the cars. lock the doors as i approach. i wouldn't mind. but why turn an apathetic cheek?

just stop and help a brother out.

1 comment:

Tim Engelhardt said...

I've got the same story except in was in the middle of summer on a small road in Ohio. Three hours and TWO cops later...aid arrived. I guess people just don't want to make thier lives uncomfortable.