The Weekly Ringer

The University of Mary Washington Student Newspaper

Car Troubles Lead To ‘Blonde’ Moment

3 min read

Realistically speaking, I like to think of myself as a fairly intelligent person. However, I’ve been told a time or two that I should have been born a blonde.  Some of the smartest people I know are blondes, but we all know the blonde stereotype  and the connotation that is implied. I will admit, this time I deserved the “blonde” title.

My blonde alter ego comes out regularly for one reason or another when I run errands. While doing some late night errands, I realized my car’s gas light had been on for a number of days. My Mazda and I have a close bond where I know when she can push it a little further and when she’s really struggling. Apparently this time I was overly confident.

Leaving the store, I had my entire night planned: cook dinner, hit the gym, do homework, in bed early. You know that feeling of having it all together? Do you find that every time you feel organized something happens to completely burst your bubble, for lack of better words? My blondeness took over when my car wouldn’t start in the middle of a deserted parking lot. If it wasn’t obvious enough that I was out of gas, I began to wonder if it might be my car battery.

At this point I was annoyed and on the phone with my Dad, who obviously knows significantly more about cars than I do. He said exactly what I thought he would say, “Call AAA. That’s why we have it.” So, I did as I was told and called AAA.

My next problem was the fact that I am horrible with directions, never remember street names, and have a tendency to get lost while cursing at the man with a British accent they call TomTom. After ten minutes of trying to figure out where I was, the woman on the other end of the phone said she would send someone to help. At this point, I didn’t need help. I needed to be rescued.

Cold, hungry, and helpless, the next sixty minutes felt like five hours. When maintenance-man Ricky showed up he was less than thrilled. A short man with a perfectly manicured goatee looked at me and asked how old I was, as if to say, “You should have known better.”

Surprisingly, we began chatting and in the time it took him to call for a gas refill, I had successfully learned his entire life story complete with details about his former employment, his obsession with the beach, and his daughter’s new tattoo.

Normally, my blonde moments don’t turn out so well, but aside from missing a meal and a gym session, no major harm was done. From now on, not only will I religiously monitor my gas light, I will make a point not to drive for days on empty. Mom was right when she said, “Better safe than sorry.” Next time you see that flashing “E”, I suggest making a place for “trip to Exxon” on your to-do list to avoid the inconvenience of nearly freezing to death in your car while placing an SOS call. But, in the worst case scenario, just ask for Ricky and at least you’ll be entertained.