Overheated

It’s Saturday, but I like tradition and routine, hence The Friday Five: Shall We Band Together?
1. What if any instrument do you play? Piano and flute. I haven’t played flute since freshman year of high school, and I stopped playing piano senior year, but I used to be good.
2. If you could choose to play an instrument what would it be? Guitar. It’s versatile, like the piano. I’m not willing to ruin my fingers to do it, though.
3. If you were in a band, what would your band�s name be? Something odd that manages to sound cool, like Relient K or Old Navy. I know, Old Navy’s a store, but could you imagine shopping somewhere called Old Air Force?
4. What type of music would your band play? I wouldn’t mind sounding like Relient K, actually. All I’ve heard is “Be My Escape,” but it’s a good song.
5. Would you continue to be good for years to come, or would you and your band end up in Branson playing for bus loads of elderly? Neither? There’s no shame in just growing apart. No organized break-ups, though. (Justin Timberlake, I’m glaring at you.)

Megan and Stephanie are back from Myrtle Beach, so they had a late birthday party last Saturday. I like being around people, so I made it a personal mission to take opportunities to go out. (On a mostly unrelated note, it’s also my mission to pray for anyone who asks, so feel free to do so. Email it if you’d like.) Most of their parties involve Taboo, which we didn’t do this time, though Megan tried to get it started. I am an excellent Taboo player. So we just sat around and talked and ate. The food was good, as usual. Their new-ish dog is really big and slobbery, but they managed to keep him out of the way. There weren’t a lot of people there, but I enjoyed it. And Stephanie had my second favorite kind of cake.

I didn’t plan on watching the Teen Choice Awards on Tuesday, but I did anyway. When Gwen Stefani was walking in singing the censored version of “Hollaback Girl,” I saw a girl with long pretty red hair and thought, “Is that Ellie?” I stared at that part of the screen until I saw her again, and Jimmy — from Degrassi! That was so random. It also made me miss Degrassi a lot. I couldn’t snag the tv last week, and our digital cable’s out right now, so I’ve missed the last two episodes. Boo, Comcast, keeping me from soap operatic Canadian teenagers! And they’re the Jay and Silent Bob episodes, too. Is a chance to watch my half-hour north-of-the-border drama really so much to ask for?

Adding to this summer’s car trouble, my engine overheated on my way home from work on Wednesday. I had noticed the temperature needle a bit far to the right, but I figured it was just being finicky. After a while, I thought I saw smoke. I admit it wasn’t the best idea to just drive on the slow side and hope I made it home, but I was tired from work (somehow, sorting files got really tiring). So, I made it through the exit off 95, down Rt. 5, and I was almost home. I came to a stop in the line of cars waiting for the light, and my car just went kaput. The engine stopped and all the lights came on: temperature, oil, check engine, and battery. I had my music up, so I almost didn’t hear it, but I felt it. I tried about three times to start it, but I had to give up and hit my emergency flashers so the other cars would go around. I called my dad at home (I’m so glad he gets off work so early!), and he told me he’d try to call my mom. She takes the Metro home from work, and it just happened that she was driving home right when my car died. My dad never got her on her phone, but when she pulled onto the exit, she recognized the decals in my back window and stopped to help. I went to find her flashers (she didn’t know where they were!) while she tried to start my car. She got it running enough to get home really quickly, and I drove her car. It was weird figuring out where everything was (she drives an SUV) and running so smoothly. I think I drove kind of slowly, but I was still shaken from my car’s dying. I didn’t realize until I got home that we’d actually been driving with each other’s licenses, but the chances of a police car pulling either of us over in that five minutes (I was that close to home!) were basically zero.

So after my dad fiddled around and my grandfather weighed in (it’s my grandma’s old car), I found out what the problem was. I’d put coolant in it last week and thought the gauge was just being difficult. When my dad opened the hood, the coolant tank’s cap was off and up by my wipers, and it was empty. He tried to fill the tank twice, but it kept draining out, but not onto the driveway, so he was really confused. Apparently, when you fill the coolant tank thingie, it flows down into the radiator first. The radiator was empty, so there wasn’t enough coolant to keep the engine from overheating. He kept filling it until it stopped draining, and then I was good to go. I’m glad it was such an easy problem to fix; otherwise I wouldn’t have been able to get to work yesterday.

Work is over now. I wanted a little more time to relax before school starts, and I have to gather some things, so I gave notice last Friday and left yesterday. Everyone was really nice and wished me well. I don’t think the other temps will do too well. I sort a lot faster than they do, and the one who came first seems constantly irritated with the work. She’s 32, which makes me wonder why she’s temping. And if it bothers her that much, she could leave and find another assignment — or a career. But I’m glad I had the chance to make some money. I still need teaching experience, but money is always good.

Last night, I caught The Fellowship of the Ring on TNT. I’d forgotten how long those movies are. I dozed off at least twice while watching it. I haven’t dozed off in months… not since reading for class. They are lovely movies, though, so I stuck it out and then went straight to bed. I caught the middle of Frequency this afternoon. It seemed really good. I wish I’d seen the end, though; I left to go to Target with my mom and the rugrats. It was weird at first seeing Jesus and Truman’s friend, but once I stopped thinking of them that way, I was fine. I’ll have to see the rest of that sometime. I love time-travel stories, even though it’s such a complicated concept.

I think I’ll watch Chamber of Secrets tonight. The sheer HP-ness of the season makes me want to relive the beginning. I’ve already mentally added the first three books to my “to read” list (which exists in a Post-It on my computer desktop). Is it just me, or does it seem like the Trio ages a ton between movies?



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