Wednesday, June 25, 2014

The Michelin Model XGV 75/R14

Passerby: "You got mud in your tires."
Vincent LaGuardia Gambini: "Mud in my tires. Let me axe ya, how do you get mud into the tires?"
Passerby: Oh no, that's just a figure of speech. You see, the mud gets around the inside of the wheel, throws the balance off."
Vinnie: (to Mona Lisa Vito) "You ever hear of that, mud in the tires?"
Lisa: "No."
Vinnie: (To the passerby) "She never heard of it and she knows everything about cars.
Passerby: (Looking Lisa up and down). "Hahahaha!!!"
My Cousin Vinnie, (1992)

A flat is a flat, right? A nail, a screw.... A hunk of screwdriver (my personal favorite). The tire guy reams it out with an awl-thingy, stuffs a bunch of something in the hole, hooks it up to a compressor and oo-rah, back on the road.

I guess my mistake was taking it to the unnamed mega-dealer located near a large mall on the western edge of Lakewood. 

Dropping it off involved three separate "service professionals" at two computer screens. We were in the system (we've bought two cars from them) but it still took a ten minute info dump. 

Service Counselor: "What's wrong with it?"
Me: "It's flat."
SC: "I don't see anything in the tread."

Neither did I, but I'd changed it at 11:30 the night before specifically so I could take it to a professional first thing in the morning. Sleep-deprived, jet-lagged.... Dude, really? They are busy - it will be later in the afternoon before they can get to it.

The word comes - of course, instead of calling me on the cell (as I had specifically requested) they leave a message on the home phone. The sidewall is damaged. The tire will have to be replaced at a cost of two hundred six dollars. Mounted and balanced, of course.

This is what happens when it's not mud in the tires, but nitrogen.

Me: (Teeth clenched) "Fine."
Them: We'll have it for you next Monday.
Me: "Next Monday?!"
Them: "It's a very popular tire."


Vinnie: "Let me ask you this: What's the best selling single model tire being sold in the United States today?"
George Wilbur: "The Michelin XGV."
Vinnie: "And what's the most popular size?"
George: "75R14."

This morning, while writing this, Daughter Beth texts that the review course she is using to prepare for the Maryland Bar calls the Federal Rules of Evidence witness impeachment for sensory defect the "My Cousin Vinnie" rule. 

Movie lines - laughing in the face of distress, be it buying a new tire, or preparing for a bar exam.

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