I love things in my own way

Good gravy, I had that migraine all day yesterday. From the moment I woke up till I finally gave up and fell asleep at 9 p.m.

That second sentence was a clarification, in case you were unclear what I meant by “all day.” Me and my big words.

This means that yesterday was not what you’d call eventful. I did go to work, but after awhile my boss was completely over me and sent me home. Also too, I was that kind of out of gas where you’re honestly worried you might not make it home, and I had to make an annoying and painful and nauseating trip to the gas station on the way home from work.

My car, my fancy 2012 car, told me I had 15 miles I could still drive it yet, but I don’t quite trust that alert thing, because some days it’ll say, You have 29 miles to go before you run out of gas, and then the next day I get in the car and it’ll tell me, Yeah, you’re good. You’ve got 35 miles you can still go before it’s walk-on-the-side-of-the-road-with-a-gas-can time.

Don’t you always feel terribly sorry for those people? How chaotic is your life that you ran out of gas?

Actually, I ran out of gas once. Don’t all gasp at once like that. You’ll ruin the ozone.

In my defense, I was a mere child: 34. Marvin had gotten me a new car. For the 106 years we were married, Marvin always bought and sold all the cars. He’d just tool up with a different one and I’d be all, “Okay.” My yellow Bug was the first one I got to pick out myself, and then he was so unnecessarily appalled that I made the sales guy open the driver’s-side doors so I could see the month my potential cars were made, to know what sign they were before I made my final selection. (My yellow Bug was an Aries.)

Anyway, the time I ran out of gas was two cars before the yellow Bug. When I was dating Marvin, he hated my red Nissan Pulsar. Hated. I had smushes on both sides of it. I BOUGHT it smushed on one side, because it was cheap, and yes, I know. Shut up.

So then I parked it on the street in front of my cute Seattle apartment because I had to,

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My cute Seattle apartment. Oh, ’90s. You were cool.

and a CRAB TRUCK plowed right into it. Crabs! Hit by my own astrological sign! It’d be like if a car full of virgins hit you, or a driving goat.

I know a crab truck hit me because a school bus was behind said crab truck and they saw the whole thing: The symbol-of-Cancer truck plow into me and drive away, that is. The bus driver took down the license plate of said truck and called the police, and for me, all I had to do was wake up later and find a nice note from the police, in a plastic baggie on my windshield, telling me all I had to do to get the crab place to pay up.

And MAN, that crab place was, you know, crabby when I called. “How do we know the school bus driver didn’t make it up? How do you know it was us?” Yeah. He randomly selected you, the big moneybags local crab shop, so we could hit you up for that deductible.

Oh my god, anyway.

So by the time Marvin came along, I was driving a car with BOTH sides smushed, and he told me I wasn’t allowed to enter LA with that vehicle. I can’t believe I listened to him, but I did, and went out and selected a new car based solely on the fact that it had the same initials as me.

[Tens of people try to think of a car with the initials JG before remembering that isn’t my name.]

A Kia Sephia, okay? I bought a Kia Sephia.

Well. This appalled Marvin just as much, and why didn’t I tell him to go fuck himself sideways? It wasn’t HIS money getting spent. What the hell was I thinking, on my vast receptionist’s salary, going out and getting another car just because stupid Marvin didn’t approve of the one I had? Ima go back to 1996 and slap my own self.

Anyway.

So, a few years later, Marvin bought me a different car, and this time it was OUR money, at least. He got me a Kia Sportage, which no longer matched my initials because by this point I had Marvin’s initials, and there are no KD cars. But I had this long commute, see, and the gas gauge was NEAR empty one night, and I wanted to see how much it cried wolf before I had to fill the tank.

And that is when I ran out of gas on the 101 Freeway in Los Angeles.

Fortunately, I had a cat-gray cell phone the size of a shoe, and you had to open it up–to say it “flipped” would be generous. Anyway, I opened the gray shoe and called the AAA, there, and the guy came to my rescue with a can of gas. HE was the one walking the freeway with the gas can, not me. My life was perfectly in control.

“I put this in your tank, ma’am, and what you’re gonna wanna do is get to a gas station right away.”

As I drove off, I was a tad huffy. Well, of COURSE I was going to a gas station right away. Did he think I was an IDIOT?

And right then I knew. Yes. Yes, he DID think I was an idiot, because I let myself run out of gas in the first place. Neither he nor Marvin enjoyed my theory that it was a new car and I needed to know how far I could push it.

While I’ve been telling you this important story that’s going to make a big difference in your life, I heard the telltale sound, FLOOMPF,

IMG_9599.JPGof S Dan, Lead Cat of All Assy Cats, leaping to the roof to survey his domain.

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S dan inviz. not to look at s dan pleeze. on patrolz. burd patrolz.

Whoever said he’s a high-up cat is so correct. Not all cats are. Lily springs to mind.

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Lileee resent

I’ve got to get in the shower and try to function among the living. I’m, like, 48% out of it right now, and have none of the energy. I didn’t even get up and go to spinning before my morning run.

Heh.

Before I go, I wanted to share with you this photo my cousin put on the Facebook today. Apparently, it’s my aunt and uncle’s 59th wedding anniversary, so my cousin put up their wedding pictures. She is like me with the whole enjoying old things. Everything about those pictures–my aunt’s dress, the cars, the BRIDESMAID’S DRESSES ON MY GOD, I adore.

But since they aren’t my pictures I felt weird about stealing them all. I DID steal this one of my mother and my Aunt Kathy, cause it kills me.

IMG_9596.PNGLook how fancy. That pink dress of my Aunt Kathy’s later became my play dress and I LOVED it.

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I love things in my own way.

Okay, talk at you later, and don’t forget to fill your gas tanks.

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Author: June

At one point, I was sort of hot, in a "she's 27 and probably a 7" kind of a way. Now I'm old and have to develop a charming personality. Guess how that's going.

56 thoughts on “I love things in my own way”

  1. Both of my children have run out of gas. I just couldn’t believe it either time. I think I actually asked both of them ” Are you an idiot?”. I hate the all f:@!/ing day migraines. They do sap the strength.

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    1. I made it to work, even though I might barf, only to realize I spilled toothpaste on my goddamn shirt. And now I have stupid Ned’s voice in my head. “You know what’d I’D do…”

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  2. Hilarious post, June.

    I also owned a red Nissan Pulsar. It went from 0-60 in about ten minutes on a good day, but I still loved it.

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      1. I always wanted a T-top. Mine had a sunroof but it only popped up a few inches (that’s what he said). I thought I was hot shit in that car and then someone ran through a stop sign and smashed it to bits. I used the insurance money to move to Florida, so it kind of worked out in the end.

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      2. My husband had a champagne colored Pulsar with T-Tops when we met. Now I don’t know if it was because it was a 5-speed or if it was special, but I could get that little sucker to fly! It was a fun little car.

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  3. I TOTALLY get your need to see how low you can go (that’s what SHE said…). I ran out of gas in my Datsun in the middle of an intersection, during rush hour, while taking a FedEx package to the last drop. Got out and PUSHED that sucker out of the intersection. By myself. Then I ran the package to the drop. I don’t remember what I did about gas. Oh to be that young again!

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  4. I don’t think I’ve ever run out of gas. In fact, I can only remember letting the gas get so low that the little gas tank on the dash came on. Paranoid, is what I am. Also, I thought your title read “I love things my own way.” So do I, Joon, so do I.

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  5. I have never run out of gas because I get nervous if I get under a quarter of a tank. My husband is the opposite and I despise when he gives me my car back when it is on fumes. He has run out of gas, as an adult.
    I hope your energy level improves and your headache leaves

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  6. I once ran out of gas just feet from the gas pump. Had to push it the last bit. It wasn’t at ALL humiliating.

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  7. Driving goat! I love this post! Well, except the part where you are still feeling unwell from your headache.

    I almost ran out of gas in my 1991 minivan, I couldn’t figure out why it was sputtering as I drove into the gas station. My gas gauge broke, so I was sort of paranoid about running out of gas, so I set the odometer and would fill up every 250 miles even though I could technically get 300 miles out of a full tank of gas. I never ran out of gas in that van, but I can assure you I had more AAA tows, it quit on me in the car wash, at the grocery store, on a dirt road, at a yard sale and in the drive-thru at the drug store. I knew AAA well, yet I cried when we donated that van to charity. I loved, loved, loved that van (my husband called it my footlocker).

    Those vintage photos are priceless. How does it feel to be called vintage? How old does something have to be to be vintage?

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  8. i can’t remember running out of gas. when the meter states 25 more miles and in a minute and one or two miles it suddenly says, “5 miles”. what?

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  9. I had a Pulsar too. I loved it because it was my first car. I had the sunroof that didn’t open all the way but you could lift it off and put it in the trunk. I can’t believe I never broke that stupid piece of glass.

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  10. My first car was a Datsun 280 Z with rear louvers and a front end spoiler. I don’t understand anything I just wrote, but that was what was on the car when I bought it. My second car was a Corvette because I had a small penis. I then had a few BMW’s that I loved more than anything and I was single and had a lot of disposable income. I currently drive a 2003 Toyota because we have no money, no pride and my penis fell off entirely.

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    1. And one of my many neurotic fears is running out of gas. So I fill up the minute it hits 1/4 of a tank.

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      1. What does it say about me that I fill up at 1/2? My theory is that the gas is most efficient without all that air/headspace in the tank. That just leads to more and faster evaporation. Fill up often for greater gas mileage.

        Disclaimer: I am a normal neurotic person not a degreed Gas-Mileage-Engineer. YMMV

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        1. That’s funny. My theory was always that you get better mileage the second half of the tank, because you get better mileage the lighter the car is. I drive mine mostly until the gauge hits the empty line, and start worrying when it’s below the line. So far, so good. No running out of gas yet for this car.
          June, I adore the look on your face in your dress-up picture. I would love to know what you were thinking then. I’m glad the migraine appears to be on the wane.

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      1. I did too. It was my dream car while in HS. My first car was a Mustang. Not the fastback that I wanted though. Too much power for a girl. Ugh. We sold that car when we moved to Germany. We had an Audi and then two BMWs. They were so cheap over there. We were so dumb that we didn’t ship one back.

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  11. Those dresses!!!! I always wonder what would happen if people back then time traveled to the future and saw today’s people at Walmart in their PJ’s. Would they be appalled?

    Count me in with the migraine situation. I had one on Tuesday. I was on call Monday night and had to go in at 3:30 am. for a cluster fuck of a situation. By the time I finally got to sign out (10:30 am) I was puking.

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  12. I’ve run out of gas one time. My gas gauge indicated 1/4 tank left and that’s how I found out my gas gauge was a big fat liar. I’ve never run out of gas since.

    When I was in my early 20s, I had a best friend who was a lot of fun and also dumb as a box of rocks. She completely lacked the common sense gene. She was always running out of gas because she never thought to look at the gas gauge; I’d have to always remind her “Don’t forget to get gas.” She always forgot. She also had a habit of locking her keys in her car. This happened so often, we figured it was a good idea to give me a set of keys. This came in handy when she got involved with an abusive asshole who took her car and keys and wouldn’t give them back and I used my set of keys to “steal” the car in the middle of the night.

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  13. [clearing throat] My name is AA. I may or may not be in the car business. I may or may not have pulled into an auction house driveway because my engine blew. I may or may not have called husband who is in said car business with me and informed him my engine just blew. He may or may not have took a big looooooooooong pause, one of the loooooongest pauses I’ve ever heard him take. He may or may not have asked me to look at my gas gauge, was I out of gas. I looked. Right then I knew. This may or may not have been just last year.

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    1. When I was around 21, I called my father from the office I worked in to tell him my car wouldnt start. He came all that way to find out I had no gas. It happens!

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  14. This will surprise exactly no one, that I have never run out of gas. I fill up my gas tank on a schedule. I have a PROCEDURE (shout out to those of you on (Face)Book of June!) And just to further annoy everyone, I fill up (on schedule) on my way home so I don’t have to stop before going wherever I’m going. (That part is largely due to a tragic situation when I had to be somewhere immediately and I had to stop and get gas first. Haunts me to this day, obv.)

    And I am not telling you what my first car was because I had to propel it with my feet a la Fred Flintstone. No. My FIRST car was a muscle car, a Ford Fairlane. Vroom fucking vroom!! Things went rapidly downhill after that as various relatives passed down their hateful, hideous, worn-out, ripped upholstery, bile-colored, family sedans for a few years. Then the college years of Subarus (with the requisite Birkenstocks and sexual experimentation) (Kidding). Nowadays, my husband will tire of his car just about the time it’s paid off, he gets a shiny new car and a shiny new loan, and I get his car and no payments!! Win-win!

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    1. My husband had a Ford Fairlane when we first started dating. It had a huge front seat that was more like a sofa. I remember sliding across that seat to sit next to him while we drove around, found someplace to park then make out so long my lips would swell. Braces.

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  15. I called my husband last week about the warning light that came on in the new car. “‘There’s something wrong with this dumb car!” I said, crossly. “There’s a light. It’s red.”
    “What does it say?” he asks sensibly.
    “Low fuel?” I reply, quizzically. And right then, I knew. I’m an idiot. I never look at the gas gauge. Married too long to a man who never lets the tank fall below 1/4 full. Gimme a break – I’m a mere slip of a girl… only 55.

    Hope your head is better June!

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  16. Love the gasoline stories! Whenever my gas gauge drops to 1/4 tank, my father’s voice starts talking in my head. I hear him say, “Never let your car’s gas tank dip below !/4 tank!! You never know when there will be an emergency!”

    I’m 56. My father, God rest his soul, would be 83 if he were alive today. I think he’d probably smile to himself knowing that his voice still haunts me.

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  17. Your posture and the expression on your little girl face in that floofy dress is so priceless, I can’t stop looking at it.
    The fact that you needed to know the astrological sign of your car kills me. In a MILLION YEARS I would have never thought to do that.

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  18. Commenting late. I’m migraine afflicted today and yesterday too. My first car was a used lime green pinto. The passenger door latch was defective and when I went around corners it would fly open. Pinto’s bringing death and destruction in a variety of ways. They sure have wiped them off the face of the earth.

    Our eldest daughter’s freshman year at college. She goes out with friends to see a movie. Returns to her brand new Toyota and can’t find her keys. Anywhere. Car is locked up tight. They looked for those keys a long time. She calls us weeping. We have USAA insurance. Best insurance ever. They will come out and unlock your car, fix a tire, make you a key etc. As her dad is giving her the phone number he hears a vehicle in the background. Yup, left the car running the whole time! And none of them noticed. Still had to have USAA come out to jimmy the lock. She will never never never no not ever live that down.

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  19. I’ve run out of gas once, but luckily coasted into a gas station. Several years ago in Atlanta, a young girl ran out of gas in a nice neighborhood and 2-3 hoodlums followed her. She ran up to a house for help ut no one was home, so the thugs kidnapped her, raped her and killed her. That scared the crap out of me, so I never go below 100 miles to empty.

    Oh, but, the best story was my sister and I driving all over the place one day and I had not looked at my gas level. On the highway, my car started sputtering and I knew then what happened, so we pulled over to the side of the road. We were just trying to decide what to do when a state trooper pulled up. He said he could a tow truck for me but I told him I would call my husband instead. So he’s on his phone and says “well, we aren’t supposed to do this but the next exit is only a mile away, so I’ll take you there.” So I had to get into the back seat of the patrol car, with my sister sitting in my car laughing her ass off because I looked like a convict that just got arrested! We still laugh about that!

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  20. When I was in high school and my dad would let me have the car for the evening, I would buy 25 cents worth of gasoline and me and my friends would drive all over Atlanta on that amount of gasoline. At the time, I had no clue my dad was writing down the mileage on his car to see how many miles I was driving. He never mentioned it to me, so I must have been under his mileage limits.

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  21. I am trying to get better at checking my gas gauge. I usually let the warning light tell me to get gas. My husband, on the other hand, is a freak about having at least 1/4 of a tank. He gets SO mad when he gets into my car and it is “on vapors.” So, in order for him to keep his blood pressure down, I am trying to be better.

    I hope you are feeling a bit better tonight.

    Lovely post, lovely June!

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  22. I love this post so much! You picked your car by what it’s sign was!!!!!!!!! And because it had your initials!!!!! Oh, that just gave me so much joy. I bought my first cell phone because it was a pretty shade of blue and because it had nice ring tones. This was in the long ago times where you could not just download whatever you wanted it to be.

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