Impulse Controls; “Hey Mikey–They Really Like it!”

 

So. The dogs and I spent last Saturday night over to some friends house in Albuquerque so that we could watch the big Balloon Festival. They live high on a hill in Corrales that is maybe four miles from the Balloon Park. As the ABQ is perfectly located for hot air balloon flying—what with its daily “box wind” phenomenon—the largest city in New Mexico draws people worldwide to attend the annual Balloon Festival.

The box wind dealio is because of the mountains around ABQ and the fact that the wind blows every which a direction as you ascend to different heights. So, basically, you can fly in circles by moving to higher and lower elevations. In spite of the rough landings that broke legs, and the one balloon that hit high power lines and burst into flames, it was fun to watch.

Before we left Santa Fe Saturday afternoon, we winterized the GTO—parked and covered and got it ready for a few months’ nap. The grand old girl is heady fun when it’s warm, but Winter’s cold and slick roads are anything but fun. Which is what sparked me to write today.

The other car previously holding the second slot in the fleet here to La Casita de Santa Fe was a rather large Chevy SUV. Big enough to carry 4′X8′ sheets of plywood, the oversize SUV was a menace on my adoptive hometown’s narrow streets and skinny parking slots. It was likewise a little clumsy in the mountains in spite of its four-wheel drive system.

The big Chevy met its demise two weeks ago when we drove it to get veggies from the Farmers’ Market. We were later in the morning leaving than usual and all the prime parking spots were already filled. I finally found a target space on Guadalupe Street, but some asshole in an Audi had parked over the back line of my assigned spot. The driver had not only parked over the line, but had done so quite crookedly. As I cursed started to drive off, Squirt said to me, she said, “You can fit it in, Mooner, I’ll guide you.”

I unhooked the diminutive brown ball of piss and vinegar from her harness and she jumped from front seat to back, and then over to the rear deck. I watched in the mirror as she surveyed the situation, pacing front-to-back and mumbling to herself, as she laid her backup plans. “OK, shithead, pull up at an angle and start backing up. Slowly.”

I started backing, slowly, and after we traveled maybe ten feet I heard, “Hard left!” and I did, and then, “Straighten her out,” and I did again.

“Slowly, slowly… slowly” Squirt cautioned me as she guided me with her muzzle pressed to the rear window. Her tiny face was squished to the glass as she gauged the distances between curb and Audi bumper. “OK, cut it hard right! No, shithead, the other right!”

After maybe fifteen minutes, the two of us managed to wedge the rear tire of the Chevy tight against the curb, and our ass-end to the Audi in a way that made it impossible for the Audi to move without dragging against the back of my car by snagging his bumper against the sharp, truck-like edge of mine.

The Squirt had the goat dog take a pee on his driver’s side door, and we left the two cars to defend for themselves.

“You need to send that monstrosity back to Austin and get us a proper New Mexico winter car, Bwana Mooner. Yoda and I plan to spend way plenty time exploring this snow season, and we want a fun car for it.”

“What do you have in mind, little lady? I haven’t car shopped for years now and I don’t even know what’s available.”

She and Yoda conferred for a bit. “Well, I want a Porsche and that silly shit wants a horse. He said that would be the historically correct choice of transportation.”

I’ve been reading Santa Fe histories to the dogs to help them get a feel for our magical hometown. The original roads in town were built to be only two horses wide, an effort to make invasion a quite difficult task.

“No Porsche and no horses. Too expensive, too much trouble, and uncomfortable for three to boot.”

We were walking along the railroad tracks that meander from Santa Fe to the ABQ like an umbilical cord sprung from my new hometown’s belly button, the Rail Yard. Squirt stopped at one of the many benches where she and Yoda jumped up to perch. “Sit down, Mooner, and let’s get serious. This can’t be a knee-jerk decision. Cars cost a lot of money these days and you need to take your time. The goat dog and I have a wish list—all wheel drive, roomy, dependable, panoramic sun roof, stain resistant interior all around, and a really great sound system. You can’t just be buying the first thing that catches your eye.”

She was right, you know. I can’t choose new cars with the same impulsive decision making process as I have with the wives. I keep cars for twenty years or longer.

We did our market shopping without too many distractions and returned to Guadalupe Street to find the Chevy SUV sitting on four flat tires and a full dozen Daisy’s Farm Fresh Free Range eggs dripping and sun-drying on the finish. I’m pretty sure they were Large, and I knew they were Daisy’s because of the color of the yolks. We buy a couple dozen of Daisy’s finest Large each trip to the market.

Anyway, the Audi was gone and I got pissed and after getting the car cleaned and tires inflated, we went car shopping. The three of us drove through every fucking car lot in town as we window shopped. The kids would “Oooo,” and “Ahhhh,” at all sorts of shit, and the Squirt was a running string of car commercials as we passed her favored models.

“What’s the matter, asshole, you haven’t stopped to see a single thing. What could possibly be wrong with the Acura MDX? It’s been totally redesigned and made for mankind! You don’t seem very excited about any of this.”

She was right. I just couldn’t get into it. “Let’s go down to the ABQ and get some hot dogs at Der Weinerschnitzel.” We love Der Schnitzel dogs, the three of us do.

So we did, and we exited at the wrong street and were forced to drive the access road to get back on the freeway. “Oh look, asshole, it’s the Mini store! Let’s check them out,” Squirt exclaimed.

So we did. Bought the first thing we saw—a Mini Countryman S All-4 with six speed manual transmission, no panoramic sunroof and a basic stereo system. It’s the ugliest thing you ever saw, and we love it.

Which reminds me. Has anybody thought to say that the reason the Affordable Health computer systems crashed from overuse is because the silly fucking Repubbies spent so much time promoting Obamacare? Planning for the best from a soft opening, Government computer systems planners felt that as many as 50,000 people would be logged on at any given time. Since all the systems were new, no real advertising program was planned and when you give the great American populace three months to do anything, the great bulk of us do it on the next-to-last day. Plan was, get the glitches worked out in early October, fix those glitches, and then be ready for the rush with a proven system.

But—thanks to those silly boys and girls who wish to take affordable health care away from the rest of us—the months of heavily vitriolic anti-Obamacare rhetoric spurred huge numbers of visitors to the site. More than 250,000 at a time, or five times as many as expected in the wildest dreams of the planners.

And guess what. When people take the time to look at the actual data, they like it. Even the bigoted and greedy, close-minded assholes like it. It’s like that old cereal commercial. “They like it!”

Thanks, shitheads, for selling a great product. Manana, y’all.

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9 Responses to “Impulse Controls; “Hey Mikey–They Really Like it!””

  1. Q says:

    I hate people who park poorly. When a person parks, all they have to do is get out and look to see if they’re evenly in between the lines. It’s not hard! But, what do they do? They park, get out and walk off as if the world has no authority to ridicule them. I love it when someone double parks when I’m in my old Buick. I squeeze in and block their door with my car so they have to crawl in on the passenger side. Jerks.

    As of the AHA, the GOP can keep saying that the people don’t want it, but 250,000 trying to register at any given time over the past couple of week.s says otherwise.

  2. Squatlo says:

    I wish I could be out there to photograph the balloon festival, Mooner, ’cause that sounds colorful and fun, and probably involves drinking copious amounts of beer outdoors. My kind of thing.
    But you can keep car shopping. I buy a car about every twenty years, not because I’m emotionally attached to the old one, but because I hate the sales process, salesmen, their sales managers, the whole financing ordeal. Bought my last car from my son’s place of employement (CarMax) because they don’t haggle. Here’s the price for the used car you’re looking at, here’s what we can offer for your car. Here’s the math, or you can do it yourself. No hassle, haggle, or surprises.

    And fuck people who can’t park properly. I like to leave notes on their windshields asking them what part of Alabama they’re from. They don’t have white lines in the parking lots in Alabama, you know, ’cause they’re all gravel.

  3. We’ve just had relatives leave this morning in their motor home going back to Michigan. They just came from the ABQ and that balloon festival Thursday and we got to hear all about it (again) and saw many photos. Of course neither of them do psychedelics so I don’t have that perspective yet, but someday ….. someday …..
    That and fucking, Burning Man. Trippin’ my nuts off …… Bucket-list
    How ’bout YOU, Mooner? Tripped the Lights Fantabulous at the ABQ Baloonfest before?

  4. Cynthianne says:

    Mooner- You went from a honking Chevy SUV to a itsy-bitsy, teeny-weeny Mini? (Mooner in a Mini- there’s a mental image for you.) It’s one of the smallest vehicles around. As you are kinda the opposite of petite, I’m surprised you fit in the driver’s seat. Or is Squirt going to be doing all the driving? Oh well, I’m sure you’ll enjoy the Mini, even if you have to use a shoehorn to get into it. (What color is it? I hope it’s red.)

    And I have heard people saying that the Repub’s paranoid seizure over the ACA actually fueled interest in finding what all the hullabaloo was about. Law of unintended consequences. My own private hope is that this explosion of crazy will scare enough people out of voting Republican to switch the house to sane control. (I know, I know, I should live so long as to see us hit peak wingnut, but a girl can dream, can’t she?

  5. bj says:

    I believe the Mini was voted one of the ten ugliest cars recently ….. along with that Cube thingy and the others that resemble a toaster on wheels. Also voted ugly was the Fiat 500 soo … who can account for taste, huh? I sat in a Mini once at a gas station while we were each filling up, the other lady and I. It was brand fucking new and VERY red and she was so proud of it. “It has way more room inside than it looks” she told me. “Sit in it”. I was surprised at how roomy it seemed, even with MY big ass all up in dat … and as I sat there, I could picture myself driving the Tail Of The Dragon …… ass all scrunched up in the seat and feeling the curves ….
    Good Choice, Sir! Watch yer topknot a’gettin’ in and outta there though, High Pockets.

    I must admit I am not surprised by the massive problems associated with the launch of the Healthcare site …. Republican hackers and jammers have had ample time to prepare for the obstruction/destruction of that site; much as the Tea Party Hackers and Jammers have done in Congress since January 2011. the problem for the Tea Party and Republicans is that Obamacare is not going away. They’ll fix the site and all associated problems and it will work. It Will Work. It works all over the world … it’ll work here. Republican NIGHTMARE! SOCIALISM TAKING OVER! ANOTHER GOVERNMENT TEAT! and one more thing they played absolutely NO part in building …. and …. it will work. insurance prices will come down. health care cost will come down to what it is on the global free market. drug prices will come down. and EVERYONE … is covered. Not FREE …. but Affordable. it will work. Losers? Insurance companies, Pharmaceutical companies, Republicans … Winners? Fuckin’ …. everyone else

  6. bj says:

    ps: HEY Markie! ‘SHROOMS at next year’s Balloonfest … whaddaya’ say? Holla atta Brutha’, a’ight? Not sure I wanna do Burning Man and hallucinogenics at the same time …..

  7. Mooner's on Lunchbreak says:

    Q. Poor parkers can be a royal pain in the ass. I’ve never keyed a car but can understand the illogic at times. I once berated an man for parking his giant fucking Hummer in two handicap spots. He gets out the silly yellow monster with black-tinted windows and I’m all up in his face. He’s saying shit about how I need to get out of his face so he can unload. He says it five or six times and I say, “Fuck you, shithead,” five times before I say, “Unload what, asshole?”

    Turns out the what to unload was a kid on crutches–the ones with the metal arm loops they the always infirm use. The kid–a girl of maybe twelve–smiled angelically and whacked me on the shin with what I think I remember to be her right crutch.

    Squattie. OK, the ones not gravel are dirt, and how about the Vols going down there this week and kicking they ass for the entire country?

    M ‘d Ass. First B-Fest and only copious Carta Blanca beers and smoke. Thanks for listening.

    C-Anne. Mini’s ivory white with a black roof and so ugly you want to take it home and feed it warm milk. As Beej says, it’s quite roomy for 4 adults of average size and two big uns like Beej and me. Seats in back are roomy too, but less so when two six foot plussers push the front seats way the fuck back.

    As for Affordable Care, again as Beej tells it, the GOP managed to help it to its worst possible start and yet it’s still only the poor start any reasonable person would expect under the circumstances.

    Beej. Gotta go for now but will be back to report.

  8. Mooner's on Lunchbreak says:

    Beej. The two of us in the Mini as we tear through Rocky Mountain roads would be both a sight, and a total fucking thrill. As for its looks, the little car is so ugly it’s adorable, just like the goat dog. Me, I think Yoda might be the ugliest not-deformed or maimed animal on the face of the Earth. But the ladies find him “adorable” and “he’s so cute” and “sweet”. Little dog is so ugly he’s scared of his own image yet women fawn all over him.

    The Squirt thinks most women have poor taste. My ten exwives serve to, somewhat. support the little dog’s claims.

  9. Squatlo says:

    I’ve always liked the Mini’s, it’s basically a BMW on a go-cart frame. Oughta be a blast to scoot around in.

    About the ACA… I tuned into El Rushbo’s show the other day while hauling trash in the Clattermobile, and all he had for material was an extended rant about the website glitches, and how they were synonymous with the Obama administration because no one in his entire cabinet had ever run an actual bidness. He took a commercial break (they’re much shorter than they used to be, due to a lack of paying advertisers) and came back with the same song, different verse, about incompetence, and how Obama probably thinks he can simply WILL the tech geeks to give 150% more effort and get it up and running. Sigh…

    Actually, the law’s a piece of shit, but still a better piece of shit than the current system. Once it’s in place, the ground will be ripe for paring off the needless fat (insurance companies). If we just eliminate the middle men (as every other industrialized nation has managed to do) the system will then be exactly what conservatives claim to want: they constantly tell us no one should come between the doctor and the patient, but currently that’s all insurance companies, HMOs, and bidness interests do. Once they’re out of the equation and we’re on a single payer system funded by a reasonable tax on every American’s paycheck, no one will go into bankruptcy due to medical expenses, and no one will be denied care or coverage. Medicare for all, it’s that simple to explain. Anything less is just shuffling the paperwork and continuing to pay the leeches who live like parasites off of the current system.

    And Mooner, beatin’ Bama AT Bama is one of those pipe dreams I’ve only seen a few times in my life following the Vols. Won’t happen Saturday, but the future’s so bright we gotta wear shades.

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