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Dispatch from Costco’s Tire Shop: Monday as Day From Hell

Any day could be a Day from Hell, I suppose. Monday’s as good any for spiraling downhill. After a full morning in Hell (cleaning lady, nail in a tire, driving round and round Robin Hood’s Barn), as we scribble we’re now parked on a bench in the Tire Shop at Costco, waiting a predicted two hours to get one flickin’ tire fixed.


Dave, the doughty fella manning the customer service desk, is so busy he hasn’t had time to take a deep breath. Literally: the action here NEVER STOPS, not even for a minute or two.

This morning I had to take Ruby the Corgi to the vet to find out about getting her stinky teeth cleaned. This is a much neglected task: having foolishly imagined that I would be responsible enough to clean her teeth myself, I’ve let it go and let it go and forgotten about it and let it go until now she stinks so much she no longer can be ignored.

Actually…the issue is that her mouth is too small to allow me to fit the finger-sized tooth-scrubber thing in there. So no amount of pretend scrubbing does…well…anything. So this morning I took her to the vet, who wants A THOUSAND DOLLARS to clean her teeth.

This was no surprise, because the same vet used to pull the same stunt on La Maya, who (more or less) willingly forked over the cash for her two dachshunds.

Expecting this, I told her that on Social Security there’s no way in Hell I can afford anything like that.

She recommended some outfit called Doggy Dental, which supposedly does nothing but clean dogs teeth, for something vaguely resembling a reasonable fee.

That notwithstanding, she charged me for X-raying the dog’s teeth (did I ask her to do that?), and of course for the privilege of walking into her office.

So on the way home I stopped by a newer, closer vet to ask what they’d charge. Walked in. NOT A SOUL AROUND! Waited awhile. Left.

Next: low tire light comes on. Sumbiche!

Stop by the Firestone shop on the way home – they’re up at the corner Conduit of Blight and Gangbanger’s Way. Guy there says the tire needs to be replaced. And that’ll be a thousand bucks.


See ya!

So now here I am at the Costco, waiting and waiting and waiting to see if they can fix the tire and, if, not to simply buy a new one. Which, you may be damned sure, will NOT set me back a thousand dollah.*

This place is hectic!!!

The guys at the desk haven’t had a chance to take a deep breath since I walked in. But now…weirdly!…the crowd has abated, people have roamed off, and it’s downright quiet in here.

Meanwhile, NATCHERLY today is Cleaning Lady Day. So Luz is on her own at the Funny Farm. Fortunately, because I had to duck in there on the way, I did manage to pay her. That’s something. I guess.

Dayumnation! Somewhere, somehow I’m gonna have to find a vet that charges reasonable fees. And is competent.

That’ll be quite a trick. All the good old vets that I knew have retired and sold their veterinaries. So I don’t know anyone anymore. And they don’t know me, either…so haven’t the slightest compunction about charging me through the schnozzola. {sigh} Because of that, I reckon, Ruby  the Corgi is going to be the last dog to live at the Funny Farm.

How much longer, I wonder will the Ruby last? Overall her health seems to be excellent. So, barring accidents…what? Three to five years?

Holeee shee-ut! In five years I’ll be EIGHTY-TWO YEARS OLD! Assuming I’m still alive, that is.

Doesn’t seem possible.

That’s actually not out of the realm of possibility, though. On the California side of the family, women have lived into their 90s…and since they were Christian Scientists, that was in the absence of medical care. One of my uncles was 88 when he croaked over…. But… my mother’s New York grandparents weren’t so fortunate. Her grandmother died of diabetes in what must have been her mid- to late 30s…early 40s at the latest.

So then we’re confronted with the question of whether, after Ruby passes on to her furry fathers, can I justify getting another dog? Or even handle having another dog?

. . . .

Tire Shop Desk Dude: It’ll take about two hours to fix that.
Customer: That’s fine. I’ll do some shopping. The car is right outside.
TS DD: Where’s the wheel lock key?
Customer: In the glove compartment.

Uh huh. NOBODY would ever think to look for it there….

Guy just came in with a tire that needs fixing. Warrantee expired three years from the day he bought it: YESTERDAY.


. . . .

As we were saying…. Can I, should I get another dawg after Ruby passes on to her Furry Fathers? Assuming she predeceases me, that is.

Unless the proposed successor to the Crown is already pushing old age when she arrives in the Realm, I’m not likely to survive her. So…who will take her? Can my son be bamboozled into agreeing to take in an ancient dawg when his mother croaks over? Hmmmmm…..

Old Guy comes in, pays a bill, walks out. He’s wearing well-used jeans held up with suspenders. Looks like he belongs in the Ozarks.

Prob’ly cruised in from Paradise Valley in his Rolls.

This is the West Side, though. Not impossible that he could be an old cotton farmer or rancher. Not likely, though.

Hey: Tire Dude says the guys are just finishing up with the Venza. Give it 2 minutes; then walk out to the second bay.

Hungry hungry hungry. By the time I get home it’ll be dinnertime, almost. So I guess that’ll be the main meal of the day.

How much longer before two minutes have passed?

Ohhhh how I wanna go home!



* Oh, and it cost $12 to replace the tire… It was on warrantee.


4 thoughts on “Dispatch from Costco’s Tire Shop: Monday as Day From Hell”

    • The vet’s proposed fee is especially outrageous given that a couple days ago went into a Petsmart and bought a bag of woopsy-doopsy-super-double-whammy tooth-cleaning doggy treats. Rub is beside herself with doggy joy and…uhm…waddaya know?: Her breath stopped stinking!

      Haven’t wrestled her down to look at her teeth yet — figure to give it another few days before pouncing her. But without pulling up the lips to peer into her mouth: her teeth look a little whiter, and the stench is — absolutely positively — GONE.

  1. Vet bills are something that also has me thinking when my kitties go, they won’t be replaced either. I’ve had cats most of my life, so no pets will seem very odd. But I share your thoughts on newcomers.

    • Dunno that I could live without the livestock. If I had a more active social life, lots of friends…sure, maybe. But in the first place, the critter keeps me company (and doesn’t talk back! …much). In the second place, hereabouts you really DO need a dog, especially if you’re a woman living alone. The bigger the hound, the better.

      Ruby’s not very big, but she sounds like a much larger beast, and she probably would bite if pushed to it. As a practical matter, though, what you need a household dog for is to alert you to the presence of potentially unwelcome visitors, not to run them off. Other tools work better for that purpose…

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