My car rattles. Not my VW Golf of Loveliness but my 2002 Saturn Vue. It was not that long ago that I loved my Vue. The Vue and I were close. Then… Last fall, the Vue started to rattle. Luisa first suggested that the car had always done that. I knew that was not true but I let it go because I’m generous that way. Then, it got a little bit worse and Luisa said that it was because the car was plastic and it was expanding and contracting with the changes in temperature. Saturns do that, it’s true, but this rattle was not that kind of rattle. Things continued to deteriorate and the rattle got to the point where friends riding in the car would shout over the din, “What the hell is that noise?!” It was bad then but you should hear it now. Pedestrians turn their heads toward me when I drive by. They fear me and my rattle. Music does not drown out the rattle. Talk radio does not drown out the rattle. My son, the boy who has no volume control and is never silent, CANNOT DROWN OUT THE RATTLE. It’s like there is a mischievous gnome clumsily juggling glass bottles under the front end of my car. Sometimes, the gnome clacks them together because that’s how car gnomes are. I cannot stand the rattle.
This morning, it came to my attention that I may be a little obsessed with the rattle. Apparently, when we are in the Vue, I talk about the rattle and nothing else. This seems to be a source of frustration to those around me. This morning, while Luisa was driving me to work in the Vue, I mentioned the rattle…just in passing, of course. I might have also laid down an edict (the tiniest of edicts) in which I said that the car would be sold if the rattle could not be repaired. I find that edicts go down easier if they are put to music, so, I sang a little song, “Bye Bye Saturn Bye Bye” but my musical stylings were not at all appreciated. Luisa saw my edict and raised me one. She said that we would not be selling the car and that I would just have to wear ear plugs. You don’t solve a rattle with ear plugs. I was outraged at the fact that she was dismissing my incredibly legitimate concerns. We then arrived at my building and I gave kisses to all and that was that. Luisa then dropped Miguel at school, picked up some friends at the airport and took the Vue to the mechanic.
The Mistress of the Flans returned from Brazil today and I mentioned the issue of the rattle. She had noticed it when Luisa picked her up from the airport but said that she did not think it was that bad. Long story short, she suggested that the problem was not the car but me and my fickle self. Then, I talked to my friend Kristin and she said that she, too, was with Luisa on this one. Neither believed it was reasonable to suggest selling a car because of a rattle. I was beginning to consider introspection when the phone rang. It was Luisa. The mechanic called and the swaybars have gone bad on the Vue. I don’t know what they are but they are important and if they had not been properly addressed they would have broken and caused $600 damage to surrounding very important car parts. They might have also killed that mischievous gnome. No one wants a dead gnome. So, Luisa gave the go ahead for the repairs. It will cost $400 and I have never been so happy to spend $400. I also get to say that I was right…it has not always made that noise and it is not because the car is plastic. This was a bad rattle and, because of my vigilance, it will be fixed. It’s a good day when you get to reclaim your sanity and say “I’m right”. A good day, indeed.