Phil Parker (tigertoy) wrote,
Phil Parker

WHAM!  Argh.

Driving home tonight, almost to the St. Joe exit, and I notice that there's a truck 50 feet to the right of the highway, pointed away from the highway, kinda sticking out of some trees.  Perhaps I was distracted by the sight, but I didn't see the thing on the road, probably left behind by the accident that caused the truck to be there.  But I definitely felt it!  And within half a mile, I could feel that I was losing a tire, so I pulled off on the exit ramp.  Sure enough, the right front tire was pretty much flat.  Of course it's the brand new one -- I'd just had to have one replaced due to road damage (I hadn't even noticed what I hit, but there were two huge knots on the inside sidewall, and I'm surprised the tire hadn't blown before I got it replaced).

So I go through the rigamarole of getting everything out of the way to get the toy jack and toy spare tire out.  I get the jack in place, the car up, the lug nuts off, annoying but no big deal.

And I can't get the tire off.  It's like it's welded on.  I'm afraid something is damaged and if I try any harder to get it off, I might break the car worse, so I need a wrecker.  But I don't have road service, so I don't know who to call.  I decide it's just early enough that birder2 might still be up, so I call, and she answers, but I can't seem to convince her to look one up in the phone book and tell me the number.  She says she'll drive out and meet me.

While I'm waiting, a sheriff car pulls up, and the officer gets out and checks the situation out.  I explain.  He looks at the wheel, and recommends that I kick the tire.  I already did, but what the heck, I try it again.  This time, of course, it moves, and in seconds the tire is off, just like it was supposed to be, and in another couple of minutes the doughnut is in place.  But birder2 is supposed to be on her way.  The sheriff wants to stay there to make sure nobody runs into me on the ramp.  I don't want to leave until she gets there, because it would be pretty crass for her to come out and me to be gone.  So we wait another 10 minutes or so.  She arrives, I say sorry, we all drive away.

Then I get to my mailbox, and there's a letter from the IRS that says I made an error on my tax form.  I don't have to do anything, it says, and my corrected refund will come to me in six weeks or so.  I get out the copy of the return I mailed in and look through it.  It appears that I included the telephone tax settlement thingy in my payments, but when I figured my refund, I just used the tax withheld number instead of the sum of that and the telephone credit, so the refund I claimed was actually $30 less than what it was supposed to be.  A mistake I wouldn't have made if I'd been doing the arithmetic by hand, but since I had it set up in a spreadsheet, I just mindlessly copied the numbers and didn't notice that I had the spreadsheet wrong.
Tags: car, life
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