Thursday, September 24, 2009

Just Because

Once in a while, I get this nagging feeling ---you know the one; you've been pretty busy lately, maybe had a lot of "churchy opportunities" or whatever, and you haven't taken the time to update the blog. You haven't got anything particularly dazzling to share, but you feel bad for leaving the ol' online journal unkept. I suppose there are worse things, like leaving your bed unmade or your clothes in a pile unfolded. That's all debatable too. So, I'm catching up here and giving you all the latest from Rexburg.

First, the Dart. The Dart has been such a dependable machine. I never realized how much more I could do in Rexburg with the empowerment of an automobile. Plus, I guess I really missed the feeling of riding low in the seat, cranking the tunes. I recently decided to replace the alternator. My lights started flickering, and the old alternator was making a whirring noise. So I decided to do some preventative maintenance and swap it out. 58 dollars later, I had a lifetime warranty alternator running things under the hood. It worked great for the first few days. Then it very gradually started to fizzle out. I knew something was wrong when, after my Spanish class, I went to the car to leave and the battery was barely alive.
---sidenote: batteries are the most dramatic items. Other things just break or quit working. Batteries "DIE".

So I got a jump-start and drove her home, pretty frustrated. The old alternator at least kept the battery good and charged. Hmm.

I took the new alternator off and toted it four blocks down the road to Napa. They tested it, and it checked out. SO, my brother JC thought that if the alternator wasn't bad that I might need to change out the voltage regulator. So I bought one, hoping that it would fix the problem.

I installed the new part, put the alternator back in, tightened it all up, and got a jump-start to get her started.

I drove it around for about 20 minutes to give the battery some time to charge (fingers crossed).

Pulling into the parking lot at my apartment complex, I found a spot and slowed to a stop. I put on the parking brake and switched her off.

The moment of truth had come. Would she start again under her own power? Was the problem solved? Would I be walking to the plasma center to donate tomorrow? .....

....I held my breath and turned the key. "VrrrrrrOOOOoooommmmm!" She started up right as rain. It was as though she was saying, "Yes, I'm back! And it feels GOOD!"

I smiled, nodded, patted the dash board, and let her rest. "Atta girl."
So maybe the old alternator wasn't having issues. It may have just been the voltage regulator.

My car evokes two responses from people: it's either "Whoa! Your car is SWEET!" with an appreciation for the classic vintage embodiment before them, or "Uh, ....are you sure it's safe?" Call me biased, but when I get this sort of response, I can't help but view that person with a bit of spite. And chances are, they won't be riding in the Dart anytime soon.

My roommate came to Walmart with me, and he had invited some local girl to come. She was riding in the back seat, and was making insulting remarks the whole way along:
"It's so OLD! I'm totally gonna get some disease from sitting back here! Why don't you get a new car?"

Now, normally I wouldn't dream of dropping a girl off on the side of the road. But it nearly happened that night.

Some folks just don't know a classic when they see one. There might be a little dust on the fenders, but don't let it fool ya.

That being said, I'm wanting to name her. She's been so loyal, dependable, and helpful through the years.

I've narrowed it down to a few options:
Sophie, Camille, and Dolores.

I think they're all fitting names, and I'll tell you where I stand with them.

Sophie: might be a poor choice, since I have a friend named Sophie, and it may get confusing. I just love the name! But some of my friends don't love the name Sophie. Hmm.

Camille: It's a French name, and I just like the sound of it.

Dolores: This just might be my favorite. Dolores, the Dart, proudly manufactured by Dodge. The only bad point to this name is the fact that in Spanish, Dolores means pain. Would she still be loyal to me if I gave her such a name? I could call her "Lorie" for short...

Please, help me decide.

Second, this semester is kicked off to a full-blast start. This semester, I am loving all of my classes! I always enjoy lectures and am really able to like school again. That wouldn't be the case if I'd decided to take Calculus. Let's just forget I even said that word.

As much as I tried to evade it, I got a smashing church assignment. I was called to be the Elders Quorum President ...again. I'm not super-thrilled about it, but I know I should keep a good attitude. Leadership is not my preference. I guess part of the reason is that I have been doing it for the five years I've been home from my mission, and sometimes it seems like that's all the Stake sees on my ward info. sheet. I know that there is inspiration involved, so I'm going along with it. This time around, I'm laughing my way through it, not stressing, and having fun. If the Lord really wants me, me he will have -raucous personality and all.

The weather is slowly starting to feel like Autumn, and I'm loving it. I always love the change in the seasons. I'm always ready for it by the end of the current season. Summer was fun, but that crisp Autumn breeze, laced with thoughts of apple harvest and candy corn, is a welcome visitor.

Now you got a little taste of what I'm doin'. Pretty danged exciting, huh?

PS: I recently watched School of Rock for the first time. It was an instant favorite. I LOVED it.

Thursday, September 10, 2009

More Irks and Quirks

Today, school classes started again. It's full-steam ahead!

Back in elementary school, the first day of class was always really exciting. New clothes, new teacher, seeing friends, and recess! Now it's just more of a drag. Where's my next class? When does it start? More importantly, when does it end? Do I even have a break for lunch? My teacher expects me to do ALL of that before next class? Ugh.

It makes me want to go buy a Trapper Keeper and a box of crayons, just so I can smile about something.

I've got some irks to share (as the title would suggest).

I hate to have coins jingling in my pocket. I can't stand it! If I've got enough coins that they jingle (as I did today), I'll take them out of my pocket and carry them in my hand until I unconsciously slip them back into my pocket to start the process over again.

I can't stand having half-empty soda cans sitting out in random spots. Some of my roommates do this on a regular basis. If you're gonna drink the dang thing, ...COMMIT, DANG IT!!! Don't just do a sissy half-drink. Down that twelve-ouncer and let us get on with life! If I find a can with soda still in it, I'll let it sit for an hour to make sure the owner isn't coming back for it -then it's down the sink and the can is tossed.

*I nearly forgot one: I really hate it when someone is WAY into ESPN, Sportscenter, and all that. Having that on for hours at a time is so completely mind-numbing that even the Disney channel starts to sound good. I don't care is someone is checking for highlights of a game they missed or checking scores, but how is that even slightly interesting? It's so LAME!
So all the peeves are out of the way (for now). I've got just enough time to squeeze in a short nap before my next class.