Guilty Pleasures: Automotive Edition

Now that warm weather is upon us, I can finally indulge in my most favorite guilty pleasure — reading outside on a sunny day.  Birds chirping, ice tea at the ready, feet up on the patio chair.  It’s absolutely my favorite thing.  I almost don’t care what book I’m reading, even though the book I have now is pretty good  (second of the Game of Thrones series).  I was able to grab a few good hours yesterday while Corey had the kids at his parents’.  It got me thinking about my other loves, not all of which require a sunny day.

One of my guilty pleasures would be indulging in my dorky side with, say, Star Wars, but I think I’ve beaten that one to death for awhile.  But can you really blame me?  These guys were the cat’s pajamas when I was growing up.  Of COURSE I fell in love.

My latest guilty pleasures have to do with automobiles.  The first is the Groupon I cashed in this week to get my car detailed.  I was beginning to worry that my car wouldn’t run unless it was coated with a crust of stale Cheerio dust.  Or a spongy nest of old dog hair.  It was bad.  The joy of a clean car — a blessed relief to climb into an oasis of clean and calm.   Ahhhhhh!  It’s such a small environment that I can probably keep it clean, unlike the house, which is wildly out of control.

My other guilty pleasure is Car Talk on NPR.  I don’t know much about cars (except how to jump start one — thanks Dad!), and I usually couldn’t care less about fixes for leaky transmission fluid or how to change my own headlights.  But something about this show is really great.  The hosts, who are brothers, are simultaneously corny, funny, friendly, and informative.  They take calls from people like a woman in the tundras of Montana who lives so far from a repair shop that she has to rebuild her car herself from the hubcaps up.  Or the owner of a Dodge Caravan that suffered a perplexing grinding noise as she sped home with her husband in the back–laying flat on a mattress, moaning in pain from the vasectomy he had driven seven hours to get.

All of the calls have something to do with car repair, but Tom and Ray are pros at getting to the meaty part of every caller’s story.  By the end they have offered helpful advice, told several cheesy jokes, and uncovered a really interesting tale.  Car Talk stopped airing original shows in October when the brothers retired, but I will happily listen to reruns.  And who knows?  Someday there may be advice that pertains to me.  Check it out!  You’ll feel like you’ve just spent an hour with your two favorite uncles.

Tom and Ray immortalized in Pixar's Cars.

Tom and Ray immortalized in Pixar’s Cars.

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