Friday, January 11, 2013

The Fight or Flight Light

I don't know if I've mentioned, recently, that I kind of hate dealing with car stuff.

I like having a car. I enjoy driving (well... I don't love commuting, but who does?). I don't really even mind things like filling the gas or getting the oil changed. And I kind of love going through the car wash (which I think stems from the fact that going to the Robo Wash in Sioux Falls was a big deal when I was a kid).

But you may have noticed that I haven't mentioned liking to work on a car.

Don't get me wrong - I learned enough in school (yes, I once had to take an auto shop course for a quarter in high school) that I know where things go and how they work. And I watch Top Gear with Christopher, so I've picked up a bunch of jargon from that. I've just never wanted to work on an engine. And since I know plenty of people who don't like to proofread what they write, I figure we're even. It's a symbiotic relationship.

The only problem is that, if I make a comment online about a missed apostrophe, that doesn't cost anyone any money (usually). But if I have to take my car in to have something looked at, that can get expensive. Fast.

Which is why, when my Check Engine light came on while I was driving home from a work event last night, I felt a shudder go through my system. (Not the car's system, mind you. Mine.)

Oddly enough, except for the fact that the engine has been sounding... well... different since I last had work done (last October - some transmission work - so different sounds make sense), the car has been running fairly well. My gas mileage has even been up.

Hence the shock and "fight or flight" reaction when that light came on on my dash.

I plan to take my car in sometime in the next few days to have a diagnostic run and at least get the light turned off. We'll see how much I feel like I need to flee once they tell me how much turning off that little light might cost me.

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