(Please pace yourselves on this one, people. It's a big one. Just let that be an indication to you of my frustration. Take two sittings or as many sittings as you need to get through this.)
I know that what happened Tuesday night wasn't a phenomenon unique to me, but it certainly seemed like part of a greater pattern that is developing with my car. After the wonderful "freezing drizzle" that passed through the area in early evening, my door froze shut. I'm sure this happened to many of you, but listen on. I'm betting there's more to my story than yours.
I tried to gain access to my car through the driver's side door. (What a novel concept, huh?) It would, of course, not budge.
Now this is not a new problem. It happened a week or so ago when we had another bout with winter ice. On that occasion, the door froze while I was driving home, oddly enough, and no amount of throwing my shoulder into it would make it budge. But on that occasion, I was able to climb across the car and exit through the passenger side door.
This went on for a day or so until things warmed up and the car thawed. Since then, access had been easy -- until Tuesday.
As I rounded the car, I could see the blanket of ice was also coating the passenger side. I attempted to open it and got the same result. As I tugged and tugged, the ice on the ground nearly made me fall and bust my head.
So what could I do? I cussed the car. I kicked the car. I cursed some more. The car sat there smugly in defiance. I was not easily gaining entrance.
So I went inside. (Unfortunately, my sock cap was in the car, so my ears were getting cold.) I thought for a bit and decided to try again. This car wasn't smarter than me.
But I still couldn't get in. Back and forth from door to door, there was no budging. In the past, I might have climbed through the hatch to gain access, but my hatch has been another source of ongoing drama with the car. Currently, one hinge is broken and the hatch hasn't been open for nearly a year. I wasn't going there, because it would have been nearly impossible to close the stupid thing.
Just as I was about to go in, something dawned on me -- my windows could be rolled down with my remote unlock button. Surprisingly, it worked. Unfortunately, the door would still not open, even with the better grip I could get with the window down.
On the bright side, I now had access to the vehicle -- Luke Duke-style.
A good Samaritan in a pickup stopped by about this time and tried to help me. (I'm sure he was wondering why in the world my windows were down in 23-degree weather.) He had no more luck, but if you are reading this, sir, thanks for the attempted help.
So I had to try the Dukes of Hazzard method. If any of you haven't tried to climb through a car door window with a nice layer of ice coating the ground and car, I don't suggest it. I could only envision falling in the middle of Franklin Street, getting knocked out and having some unsuspecting motorist round the corner not knowing the speed bump he was about to hit.
And then people would wonder what the assistant editor of the Banner Graphic was doing unconscious in the middle of the street with the windows to his funny little green car rolled down.
But I made it. Even from inside, though, the doors wouldn't budge. Rather than continuing the climbing routine, I sat in the car with the defroster running. (Yes, the car actually runs.) After about 10 minutes, I could see to drive.
So I get home and my wife meets me at the car. As I'm explaining that I have to climb out the windows, she pulls lightly on the driver's side handle and it pops open.
That car hates me, I swear. It just wants to make me look like a fool.
So anyway, the driver's side door opens. The passenger door doesn't. But that's only part of a laundry list of problem -- the radio fuse is unplugged because the radio won't turn off when the car is off, it needs new tires, the hatch still sucks and the windshield wipers only clear about a third of their path.
Add that to the electrical problems it had last summer (The radio thing prompted all this. The idiots at the dealership told me to non-factory battery was the problem, so I had to buy my second battery in under a month. Now the problem's back, so it wasn't the freakin' battery. Good work, Dreyer & Reinbold Service Department.), the $500 power steering motor I had to buy and the fuel pump problem from the spring, and I'd say this car is definitely trying to be the death of me.
Thank God I got it paid off last monthÖ