“Misogynistic MINI Mechanics” or “WHOA…Them Dudes Make a Shit-ton of Dough!

After 3 weeks, I leave the Great Frozen North (a.k.a. The Northeast Kingdom) Friday, on the journey south to reclaim Mini Me and head home to Virginia on Saturday.

The hotel room near the dealership is booked so I can arrive at the service door bright and early Saturday morning to pick her up.

Speaking of the dealership…I was in contact with them today, as I had asked them to do an ‘extended’ test drive to make sure she was sound, knowing I was leaving for Virginia directly from picking her up.

Word back from the Wrench Wench was…

“The test drive went really well, the Mini’s purring, but one of her high beams is out.”

“Which one?” I ask

“Driver’s side high beam” she replies

“Really? I had that replaced in July” I remind her, since she has all the service records.

“Maybe the other dealership used an aftermarket bulb” suggested she.

“Not sure what you mean by aftermarket bulb Marissa. Last I checked, the bulbs were not MINI specific. As far as I can tell from the receipt, they installed a Sylvania 9008, which seems to be the standard.”

“Do you want us to fix it? If you do, I can order the bulb today and it will be here tomorrow.”

“Order it?  You don’t HAVE one?  What would that cost me Marissa?”

“$78.96”

“To replace a bulb????”

“The cost of the bulb is $13.96 plus tax. Labor to install is $69.13. And, if you had it replaced at a dealership last time, maybe they would offer a warranty on the bulb?”

“Marissa, the cost to replace that same bulb in July was $36 complete. I think charging $69 just to install a bulb is MORE than UNREASONABLE! I’m not sure why your quote is so high, but would appreciate if you could work with me on the price (not to mention, between me and the warranty company, you just got paid 8,600 bucks!”

” I can’t really speak for other dealer’s pricing. All dealerships vary around the country usually because of state differences.”

“Well, I think I’ll pass on your installing a replacement bulb and I’ll take care of it when I get home.”


Sing along with me?

I dream of Mini with the bright gold lights

Yeah, you’d think so wouldn’t you?

I’m really not convinced this entire scenario would have played out the same way had I, been a bloke and not a sheila.

Even a sheila as mouthy as me.

Who’s to know for sure.

All I do know, is that come Saturday morning…I’m back behind the wheel, headed home.

And depending on how fast I dare to drive until I know Mini Me is with me or against me…

14 or so hours later (I’m taking the road less traveled home), I’ll be in my own bed, snugglin’ with my Sadie, and scratching my husband.

Really?

Really?

Oh wait…In my own bed, scratching my Sadie and snugglin’ my husband.

Either way…I’ll be at a Ford dealership the day after.

Depend on it!

I’ll let ya know how it goes.

🙂

Caveat Emptor Sucka

For those of you that followed my soap opera, tragic, comedy of drama  “As the Shade Turns” you’ll know of what I speak.

The “moving” company at the center of my little serial has DENIED any and all claims from my husband and me regarding our recent relocation from Vermont to Virginia.

Yes folks, Caveat Emptor has never been more glaring than in our case!

The trouble is…when a company decides to CHANGE its name to hide the fact that the negative star, negative reviews are the norm…what is a consumer to do?

The only thing I can think to do is this

Company A (as we hired them)

Colonial Van Lines Relocation Division

2000 N State Road 7, Suite 300

Margate, FL 33063

Is non-other than Company B

All State Van Lines Relocation, Inc.

2000 N State Road 7, Suite 101

Margate, FL  33063

Had we been aware (had we been Caveat Emptor), we would have read the reviews of Company B…where the MEAT of it is.  The majority of their clients wanted to give NEGATIVE stars, whether it be Yelp or the company’s own website!

Oh to have known…Oh to have CAVEATED OUR EMPTOR!

Oh to have moved our own friggin selves!

Are we done?

Not likely…

Next round…lawyers and banks!

THIS should be fun.

Whoo Hoo!

Meantime?  Don’t you DARE even think about hiring these thuggish bozos!

You hear?

(ps) they are BOTH on FACEBOOK.  OH GOODIE!

To Thine Own Self…

One year ago yesterday, I officially started blogging.  Of course, that blog no longer exists due to a minor meltdown of major proportions or a major meltdown of minor proportions…take your pick.  The result is the same.  I erased myself!

But…as happens little, if ever, in life, I got another chance.

Okay, I TOOK another chance; to reinvent myself.

I won’t win any inventor’s award or have to worry about someone stealing my patent, but all things considered, I’m happy with the new me.

I’m still sarcastic, but only when it’s warranted.

I still swear (occasionally), but I really do have a new outlook.

As I now have to look out for myself, numero uno, in all respects, this learning curve has been somewhat daunting and intimidating, but as each new opportunity has arisen for me to apply this new-found self-reliance, I’ve found it easier and easier.  I’m getting the hang of it!

NOTE:  And to my lady lovelies…I highly recommend you start this process too, if you haven’t already.  Learn to be your own best defense.  If there’s something you hate to do, don’t know how to do, usually leave to the brawn…STOP. The harder it is…the more necessary it is to take the lead and do yourself.  No matter your current life situation, circumstance, comfort level…don’t wait until the day comes, if the day comes, where you find yourself in this position. Capiche?  

So, this new me had a plan.  To do something special to commemorate my one year.  But as they say “the best laid plans…”

Instead of heading to a recently discovered photographic wow spot, to take the photo I wanted to accompany my anniversary post, I ended up sitting in the waiting room of my waaay too familiar car dealerships‘ service department.  Long story short, came home hours later without my car.  Again. For the fourth time.

But please, these guys are oooooh so good.

Really.

So polite.  So caring.  Who else would have left me out there for three and a half hours without a word or an update.  Left me so long that I finally got pissed off I went into their space demanding said update.  Imagine what those poor souls have to put up with? Ungrateful bitches like me? After all, it could have been four hours, or four and a half.  But it wasn’t.  It was only three and a half.  What was I bitching about.  They did say they were sorry.

Now, the rest of the story…

The desk jockey walked me back to the garage so the mechanic could speak directly to me because the jockeys in the front either don’t know shit from shinola about cars or just couldn’t be bothered to explain it to me.  He walked me through the garage to the last bay where I see half my car’s insides laying on the garage floor, and the explanation I received from the mechanic ‘working’ on her went something like this:  

Well see, it’s like this…um, ah, I think I know what the problem is, almost sure what it is, it’s definitely in the electronics, and I’m almost certain I can figure it out, but I’m not there yet.  This is a foreign car and I don’t work on many foreign cars. Everything is so small.  I have to remove all this so I can see what I’m doing.”

Perhaps that sounds logical to some.  Admitting you don’t know what you’re doing is not an easy thing to do, one would imagine.  Props need to be given for his honesty.  Right?  But, hang on…for my part, I literally felt and saw the red flag spring up out of my head like the flag on a putting green.  Boinnnnng.

Why?  Because  the dealership I bought the car from, bought the extended service plan from, and entrusted my car to these certified grease monkeys is….yes…an import dealer.

They sell and service ‘foreign’ cars.

Anyone else see a problem here?

Am I expecting too much?  Being unrealistic in my thinking that this import dealership that sold me an imported car and an extended service plan for this imported beauty could actually SERVICE imported cars?  Could actually FIX her should something go wrong?

Mmmmmkay.  Mmmmaybe.

Mmmmeanwhile, in the span of time it took me to pen my frustration..I got the call, from the service manager.  Time to go pick her up.  The somewhat paraphrased conversation follows. Me in italics…

Fixed?

Nope.

Reason?

We don’t have the right equipment to diagnose the problem.

Equipment?

Yes

You mean qualified mechanics?

Um, no. I mean computer stuff.

Oh. My car has its own computer stuff?

Yes, it would seem so.

First time you’ve sold one of these?

No.

So I’m not the first idiot to buy this model car and service plan from you?

I didn’t sell you the car or the service plan.  I just fix them.

Do you?

Well, the ones we sell, yes

Really?  You sold me this one and the premium, high performance service plan to go with it.  You sold me a vehicle that you cannot in fact, service. Correct?

Not me personally, but yes.

Okay.  My options?

You can take it to a Mini dealer.  They can fix it.  And I did call the closest one for you and spoke to their service manager. He said they would honor the extended service plan, you only have to pay the deductible.

That was very nice of you.  So all I have to do is take the short 90 minute jaunt to the nearest dealer that sells and services my particular brand of imported finery every time she needs more than an oil change or state inspection. Correct?

You can call me first. We can talk about it. If it’s something electrical, then yes. If it’s something mechanical, we can try.

Oh right, the computer thing again.  Tell me Denise (we are on a first name basis, Denise and I), can you recall the last two times I brought her in?  Neither was electrical.  Both are mechanical.  And I say are because they are ongoing issues that your mechanics could not seem to fix.  Do you still say I should call and ‘talk’ about these things with you?

I can’t promise anything, but you can try us first. I do apologize.

Thank you for the apology Denise.  Could you do me a favor though?

Sure, anything I can do to help.

And please don’t take this the wrong way, it’s not personal…but could you go fuck yourself?

Cost of gas?  $3.89/gallon

Cost of burning that bridge? $0.00

Cost of employing my new sense of self and old sense of gutter language?  PRICELESS