Essay — Truck Trouble

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Image source: Bull-Doser, Public Domain via Wikimedia Commons
Image source: Bull-Doser, Public Domain via Wikimedia Commons

May must be the month for automotive screw-ups. Right after a friend emailed news of her car problems, the guy who shares the short one’s space started having trouble with his pickup truck.

First the heater came on all by itself and shot out a blast of air hot enough to melt the plastic. The next day every light went out–dashboard, headlights, taillights, brake lights–a total shut down.

During all these episodes the engine ran like a champ, but the driver was getting frazzled. Two more automatic heat turn-ons had him heading to the dealer’s service department. Unfortunately, sixty minutes on the diagnostic machine, plus another hour of driving the service manager around, turned up nothing.

At that point, the stressed-out guy suggested taking a look at some new trucks. He quickly found a champagne model he liked, except it gave him a bad case of sticker shock.

The next day, the short one explained the heater and light troubles to her favorite second son. He suggested disconnecting the battery, then reconnecting it and turning the key three times. “Might reset the computers,” he said.

Now the old truck’s on day five without any more problems–which is great, right?

Well, yes and no.

Even though a new vehicle would cost more than the short one paid for her first house, she’s almost wishing for another computer malfunction. After all, spending money might help the economy–

–not to mention how great it would be to tool around Carpenter Country in a snazzy new set of wheels.


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