atomic_fungus (atomic_fungus) wrote,


At work in the middle of a teleconference, I get a call from Mrs. Fungus: her car stopped working.

Tore out of there at 11 hoping that I could get her and her car home safely and go back to work this afternoon.


First off: Verizon's roadside assistance? NOT worth the money. They used to cover tows up to 75 miles. Now they cover ten, so it cost me $100 to get her car towed home. Time to go with AAA.

Second: Their app? Total shit. Had to specify where I was and the thing would not point to where the car actually was, oh no! It has to use the nearest address! And it doesn't even give you status updates the way it's supposed to.

Third: we got ourselves off the highway and had lunch at a sushi place--Kitaro--and the service was terrible. Mrs. Fungus didn't like the food; I thought it was all right.

I got to her car at 11:50; the tow truck got to her car at 1 PM. We got home at 2:15. I told my boss I wouldn't make it back and then took the alternator out of her car. Put the battery on the charger while I did.

O'Reilly's tested it. Desired voltage output: about 14V. Actual output: 11.47V. Bad regulator. That explains the behavior we were getting from it, anyway, and it explains why she was able to get from home to where her car started acting weird--it wasn't just running off the battery, but the alternator was providing some power. The battery made up the difference, until it couldn't at which point the voltage dropped to 11.47 and everything started going wonky.

Anyway, I put in the new alternator (limited lifetime warranty!). Everything works fine again.

That happened after my morning commute in, which was an exercise in frustration.

Union Pacific is still working on the tracks, and just as I got past the first light, the crossing gates came down. For nothing. They were just testing them.

And they stayed down. Immobile. Traffic backing up.

Finally I had enough and decided I'd go to the other major east-west road, about a mile and half south of there. And when I got to that road? A whole long line of cars and a tractor, which had been waiting for the gates to go up, only there was absolutely nothing on the tracks for a mile in either direction.

Why the hell was UP testing all the crossing gates at once? Why are all the other grade crossings in town closed off? Is someone trying to piss me off?

Anyway, left home with enough time to get to work on time, but because of UP's fuckery, got there ten minutes late, fit to be tied.


So today has been an unmitigated shitfest, and I'm pretty pissed off, but at least my wife's car is fixed.

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