The Hellhole

Saturday, September 11, 2010

Wednesday right before I got to my parking deck, the computer in my car started fussing at me, saying that the right and left lamps that illuminate the license plate WERE! MALFUNCTIONING! AND! NEEDED! ATTENTION! Something had happened, and something have got to be did, you know. So I called the dealership, made a service appointment for Thursday and showed up promptly at 10:50 (my appointment was for 11:00 - y'all know I like to be on time).

Now, my dealership of choice is very nice - there is a whole wall of floor-to-ceiling windows that look down on the repair floor so if you want, you can watch what's happening with your car. There are flat-screen televisions, leather couches, they've always given free water, coffee and soda but now they also give free treats from their new cafe - while I was there, I had a turkey sammich, chips and a Diet Coke, free but they also have wraps, salads, pastries, yum! - it's a nice place full of nice people.

So while I was there this dude comes in who is angry that the entire instrument cluster on his car has gone out. He had to be well past retirement age and was the most white-bread, straightlaced standard-issue boring looking dude (this is important later, that he's not a 17-year old rocker, he's a yawn-inducing git that probably measures his lawn after he cuts it, to make sure it's even). He had on charcoal-gray socks with lighter-gray patches on the toe and heel, which he'd matched (and I use the term loosely) with brown slip-on shoes, the kind that don't really have a back, just sort of a rim where the heel goes, khaki shorts and a blue-grey polo. He owns the cheapest, most stripped-down model of this car that it's possible to buy, which there's nothing wrong with that in and of itself, but he's walking around fussing loudly, griping at the workers, generally being an ass about his instrument cluster malfunction and wanting everyone to know how big his wee-wee is, when (a) we all have the same brand of car he does, that's why we're here - we're not impressed; and (b) these are the nicest people - and even if they weren't, there's no reason to be a fucknut.

So they pull his car around to the service bays and after a while, his service advisor comes to update him. I happen to be couching just outside her door so I hear a lot of this, though he is much louder than she is. I learned much of what happened piecemeal, as the conversation progressed and Blah Dude got louder and louder, but instead of writing it as it happened, I will sum up. Blah Dude had, for whatever reason, felt it necessary to install a power amp as an adjunct to his stereo system, which he had done himself. What? Why? You need to blast your Earth, Wind & Fire CDs to impress the ladies at the old folks' home??? The standard Harman-Kardon multi-speaker setup wasn't sufficient for you to enjoy the finer nuances of Benny Goodman???? He's not a 17-year-old boy who has a car that you can't sit in the back seat because of all the subwoofers and giant Rockford-Fosgate speakers, right? He's a total bland, boring geez! And kind of an assclown, to boot.

So anyway, seems Blah Dude had drilled a hole in his car to accommodate the cord for the power amp and drilled it bigger than it needed to be, leaving a gap. Then later, at some point he'd spilled a water in his car. His power amp shorted out and blew the fuck up, and apparently the amp itself has fuses in it, not just feeding off the fuse box in the car, so the resulting short-out explosion had blown up his entire sound band and the instrument cluster.

You should have heard him bitching.

BD: What do you mean, it has to be replaced?!? Can't you people repair it?
Kim (his service advisor): No sir, it's completely fried.
BD: Can't you get a refurbished one?
Kim: No sir, not really. When these things go, it's because they're really blown - there's no way to fix or refurb it.
BD: I can't BELIEVE this! I just bought that car 18 months ago, and now you're telling me I can't drive it, because the instrument cluster is gone and I can't tell how fast I'm going?!?
Kim: Sir, you drilled a hole in your car. And then spilled water in it.
BD: This is ridiculous! I want it repaired, not replaced.
Kim: Sir, you drilled a hole in your car. I can't repair your blown out sound band.
BD: This is an outrage! I expected better quality when I bought a [this brand]!
Kim: Sir, you drilled a hole in your car. It has nothing to do with build quality.

More goes on in this vein, with him insisting that she find a refurbished part or that she can repair it or get a part cheaper, and Kim explaining that, well, once you drill a hole in your car and get water in it, all bets are off. Then he starts insisting that he shouldn't have to pay for the part - I don't know how much it was, because she was not nearly as loud as he was - because he had a warranty.

Kim: Sir, you drilled a hole in your car. The warranty doesn't cover that.
BD: Do you KNOW how much I PAID for this car?!? [No, but considering you have the bottom-of-the-line stripped down model, I'm guessing not that much and anyway - ]
Kim: Sir, you drilled a hole in your car. And then got water in it.
BD: This is unacceptable!
Kim: Sir, you drilled a hole in your car. No warranty in the world covers that.

So he got off the warranty and was arguing with Kim about the price for the replacement part and when they could get one in when Tyler, my service advisor, came bopping out of his office over to me. The problem with my car was that a wire had broken that went to those particular lights, not that big a deal but lots of time/labor involved taking the car apart to get access to the broken wire, and this fell into a gray area warranty-wise. I'm 100% covered for things like the fuel injectors dieing or the alternator going bad, and not covered for things like needing new brake pads/shoes, oil changes, stuff that wears out. Well, Tyler had checked with someone and came out to say, "Good news! They decided that they're going to cover this under your warranty!"

This set Blah Dude off again. He pointed out from Kim's office door toward me and said, outraged, "Well, HER stuff is being covered under warranty!"

Kim replied, "Sir, she didn't drill a hole in her car."

Seriously, what goes through peoples' minds, that they think drilling a hole in their car and pouring water in it is the dealership's problem??? Still, if you want to make me laugh these days all you need to say is, "Sir, you drilled a hole in your car"!

P.S. here is poor Kim, the long-suffering girl who had to explain that if you drill a hole in your car, the results are kinda your problem:
Kim Harward-Cates

This is Tyler, my service guy, who is way cuter in person than in this picture:
Tyler Black


  • B;ah Guy wins the Most Unreasonable Person/Butt Head award for the week.

    What a jerk!

    By Blogger basil, at 5:11 PM  

  • wow.


    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 7:31 PM  

  • You must have SOME car to get a cafe with your service center! And leather couches!

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 9:50 AM  

  • That makes me want to buy a car like your car - or his car, the stripped down model, minus the hole - just so I can go hang out at that place, enjoy free food, and be super nice to a person named Kim. Your depiction was SO FUNNY!

    By Blogger Nancy, at 4:49 PM  

  • I only read part of the post because clearly anyone who would drill a hole into a Mercedes is a complete retard. BTW, your car is on my list of 'Realistic Dream Cars.'

    Oh, and also, sammiches don't count as snacks; in my world that's C'ching! Free lunch babay!

    By Anonymous Summer, at 4:53 PM  

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