Posted by: fireweaver | June 12, 2008

shoe? dropping?

continuing the theme of ‘omg this rocks hope i’m not prematurely jinxing anything’, i’m driving a wee rental car today.

after the smash-up of last week, i played phone tag for a couple days with the insurance people on their side. when we finally spoke, it was a very sweet tune along the lines of, ” please take the car to the shop of your choice and have them give you an estimate. fax it to us, it takes about 24 hours to review & approve it, and we’ll immediately cut you a check. of course, we’ll cover a rental car for that time, too.” i’ve never had insurance work out this smoothly, and i don’t know anyone who has, so i’m hesitant about leaping for joy just yet.

i took the car in for its estimate yesterday afternoon to a shop recommended by a coworker. the place is right around the block from the office, and is a small local family-owned business. apparently, dad opened the store 30something years ago, and now his daughter runs the place. yes, ladies, a woman-owned freakin’ body shop. gents, you have no idea of the annoyance of taking your car anywhere for anything as basic as an oil change. the boys’ club sees you coming and thinks “haha, dumb broad”, and you know you’re getting screwed something awful¹.  this chick is savvy and down-to-earth, so you totally trust her with getting your car all taken care of. “ahh, it’s not too bad, we can do all this stuff in a week or so,” she said, “bring it in monday and we’ll get started.” i was glad to hear it, i mentioned, since driving around in the car was driving me insane. monte carlos have ONE big blind spot, and it’s on the drivers’ side, so the lack of a mirror was a serious problem. “oh, that’s true, i’ll help you out here,” and she noted on the estimate that the lack of a side mirror made the car unsafe to drive².

well, damn if that didn’t work. the insurance people did indeed take less than 24 to review & approve the estimate, with only minor changes negotiated with the garage. and on the phone with the adjuster today, after telling me they’d approved everything, she apologized profusely for having me drive around in an unsafe car for the past week, and told me to drop off the car today and get in my rental car. a reservation was already made for me, and they were paying for it outright (yay, no squirrely reimbursement issues!).

it’s not some grand limousine, and not the mustang convertible of my last rental experience, but it does have a trio of functional mirrors. the only thing that’s going to be obnoxious is the loss of my satellite. i’ve had XM for about 6 years now, and i don’t know a single radio station in this state. i had the wee car for less than 20 minutes before i was ready to punch something over the pervasive commercials. hopefully, my cds can get me through all this.


¹ see also: attempts to have questions answered in an intelligent, non-condescending fashion while considering the purchase of high-end electronics. sheesh.

² not to mention my paranoia that some jerky cop would bust me for not having said mirror, regardless of any blamelessness about the accident on my part.



  1. Oh, I know irritating it can be to have to listen to the radio. The commercials drive me batty. I always use my iPod in the car, and it helps with stress levels immensely. (Do you have an iPod? A lot of rental cars come with a jack now where you just need a cable to hook your iPod up to the car stereo.)

    And that rocks that you can take your car to a body shop run by a woman.

  2. So jealous of your female body shop experience. In my last rear-ending here in Tampa I got to see how well Progressive’s concierge service works. I’m happy to report it works perfectly. Drop off car, pick up rental, we’ll call you when your car’s ready in 48 hours. Loved it. Same as you, no fault to me in the collision.

    Hope your ride is fixed soon!

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