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Observations
2009-02-03, 11:02 p.m.

Day 1626

Things Iíve noticed lately:

1 Ė My last haircut was kinda wonky. Seems like thereís a bit of a shelf over my right temple/ear. I think the very preggers stylist assumed I combed my hair straight back, no doubt due itís marvelous condition when I popped into the shop. It was a windy day and I am notorious for not really giving a hoot how my hair looks once it gets itís initial combing after my shower.

2 Ė I tend to drive a wee bit fast. On expressways, I tend to favor the left lane and I try to keep a clear lane in front of me. Since I got the vanís muffler fixed a couple of weeks ago, I seem to drive even faster. I canít hear the engine nearly as well and my speed sorta creeps up where it really shouldnít be. For example Ė I have no qualms driving 65 on a 55mph expressway. This morning I looked down at the speedo only to find I was doing closer to 80 (in a 55) (another observation!!). While I am not fearful of driving that fast, I am a little fearful of the ticket that might result were some of the county or stateís finest around to witness it.

3 Ė My attitude at work could be better. Externally I think Iím fine. I still get rated as solid technically and a good team player, but my interest seems to be lacking. I donít feel much of a sense of ownership for my assignments and it shows. Thereís a certain sense of enthusiasm that just isnít there. Iím having trouble getting my geek on. (And who really wants help fixing THAT?)

4 Ė Pep Boys sux. Again. Had an incident with them years ago related to them replacing parts I told them specifically to NOT replace. Of course, what they replaced didnít fix the problem. I didnít pay for the parts, and they paid to have the car moved to a competent garage.

They have again proven their incompetence. Cindyís new engine? Necessitated because her former engine had no oil in it - about 3 weeks after Pep Boys was paid to do an oil change along with some other work.

When diagnosing ďengine doesnít runĒ, the mechanic at a local shop (NOT Pep Boys) couldnít even get the motor to turn over manually by turning the crank with a big torque bar. Sucker was seized up. He asked if we ever checked the oil level.

Our response? ďWell geeze, we just had it changed at Pep Boys a few weeks ago!Ē It seems like the idiot at Pep Boys drained the oil, replaced the drain plug, MAYBE replaced the filter and called it done. He seems to have forgot the part where changing the oil includes putting 5 quarts of new oil in the engine.

I donít know that we have any recourse. How do you prove they didnít put oil in? I still feel like going to their shop and chewing their butts for a while, see if maybe they feel guilty, sorry or just plain stupid. I doubt theyíll offer to pay for the new engine. But I will tell them I will never be back, I will never recommend their garage to anyone and I will freely share ALL the bad experiences Iíve had at their (and my) expense.

So be warned. Pep Boys hires incompetent mechanics that canít follow instructions or complete the simplest jobs correctly. Thatís my opinion and Iím sticking to it.

5 Ė I am at a glass shop during lunch, getting my windshield replaced. A younger guy comes in, dressed in a suit and overcoat. Iím guessing sales or lawyer. Maybe insurance. The waiting area is small. Too small to contain me, young stud lawyer and his cologne. Holy cow Ė itís making my eyes water! I wonder if he uses the overpowering cologne trick to intimidate people into giving him what he wants. I am at least being successful at making him feel inadequate. I can play on my beast of a laptop, heís stuck with his Blackberry.

6 Ė The route for the Philly edition of the Livestrong Challenge looks like, well, a challenge. I found a link to a G0ogle M@ps version that someone saved. There is apparently quite a climb leading to the rest stop in Landis Store. I need to give the map a good once over and compare it to what Iím used to riding around here as far as climbing goes. Iím ok with relatively short & steep climbs, and I can handle longer, moderately sloped climbs. But a 1 mile haul up a 15% grade would be a challenge. Canít wait for spring so I can go beat up my legs outside.

Lizzylou Ė if I do find my way clear to riding in PA., it would be super to try and run into each other. Which of the rides are you signing up for? If I go, I have to be a masochist and do the century. But those PA hills Ė gotta train a little harder. Come on spring!



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old habits - new tricks