Tuesday, January 4, 2011

Best Text, Worst Text Part 1

I noticed last week my daughter Rebekah's Twitter feed had a Tweet saying "Best txt of the yr: my mom just texting me she's stuck in the carwash."

I really, truly was stuck in a car wash. Our vehicle had so much grime on it from the dirty, melting slush on the roads that I couldn't see out of the windows. And being able to see out of my windows is fairly high on my priority list of features I want in the vehicle I drive. I figured I had just enough time to nip into the car wash before I faced the dreaded pre-company holiday grocery shopping I needed to do.

It was a great plan right up until the moment I entered the car wash. First of all the red stop light indicator was broken, resulting in me driving forward and backing up numerous times. I am surprised somebody in the line-up behind didn't turn me into the RCMP for attempting to use a car wash while under the influence. I finally decided to guesstimate the halfway point between where the "drive forward" light went off and the "back up" light came on and just stop.

That is when the real trouble started. After coating my car in a thick foam and then rinsing just one side  the car wash suddenly decided to stop. Then the yellow light came on telling me to back up. (This would have been a WTF moment, except I don't use that kind of language. Just saying.)

I became a car wash prisoner. I couldn't go forward because the door was shut and refused to open since the malfunctioning electronic system was telling it I was supposed to back up. I couldn't back up because by now there were at least six cars in line behind me, no doubt all filled with people making up for my lack of bad language. This was the point where I texted Rebekah to tell her I was stuck in a car wash.

Finally I mustered the courage to roll down my window and ask the guy behind me if he could call someone on the intercom to come rescue me. The reason this took so much courage was I had no idea if and when the thing was going to start working again. Grocery shopping is painful enough without being put through a wash and rinse cycle before arriving at the store.

It took another fifteen minutes for the manager to sort out the problem and get the thing running, making me very thankful I keep a traveling knitting project in my car for just such moments. I went on to the three stores on my list and emerged relatively unscathed about an hour and a half later. It was at that point that I saw my cell phone on the seat where I had tossed it after texting Rebekah. In my rush to carry on with the shopping I had forgotten to take it into the store with me. It had an alert on it showing a missed text, which read as follows:

"Are you out yet?"

The disturbing part of this story is not that I had a run-in with a malfunctioning car wash. Rather, it is that after texting to ask me if I was out yet and not getting an answer for over an hour and a half my daughter did not think to send a follow-up text asking if I needed help. Too bad about not using bad language, as this would have been the ideal place to insert another WTF.

Next up at North of 49- the worst text of 2010 ever.


  1. Oh my. I'm thinking you may need to stay away from electronics of all sorts....

  2. You and your family have some pretty great stories too! I've never heard of anyone getting stuck take way.

    I'm guessing if Rebekah didn't get concerned after an hour and a half, that just shows the faith she has in your ability to deal with anything. =)

    PS - I'm the WTHeck or OMGosh type myself, except in rare moments. Getting stuck in a carwash may very well have been one of them, but I hope I never find out.

  3. Typo - Why would my fingers type "take way" when my brain very clearly thought "that way"?

  4. That situation would give me claustrophobia and I don't know if knitting would help. Good for you to have that project close to hand.

  5. I'm sympathetic to depth perception issues. My wife has a problem with that. She's an excellent driver, but I don't really enjoy riding as her passenger. =)

    Two of my wife's co-workers occassionally go gambling together. They're not comfortable leaving the "spare" car in their office parking lot at night (they're both elderly women), so my wife let's them meet at our house and leave from there. Their two cars are very similar, but when I get home from work I can easily tell which of them drove to the casino. They both initially pull up over the curb and onto our lawn, but Sonia sees what she did, gets back in her car, and straightens it out. Mary just walks away, leaving her car as is. It looks really strange when she has just one wheel up on the curb. It's not a problem, in fact it's slightly amusing--except the one time she blocked our neighbor's driveway. That was a little awkward.