realizing I must poison
Wednesday, January 4 2012
The cold (that is, the seasonable chill) continued, which meant that I had to feed the woodstove more wood and open it up to consume more oxygen (which had helpfully been put there by Jesus).
This afternoon I drove into town mostly to get a replacement for the Subaru's battery, which could not keep a charge and was still under warranty. Car batteries never seem to last more than a year or two for me, but I've only recently gotten wise to enforcing the warranty. In the past I'd always thought it was lost cause, because I am constitutionally incapable of hanging on to a receipt for even that long. But at some point over the last year I grokked that all the sales records are kept in computers, and this summer that knowledge allowed me to convert two failed AutoZone batteries into brand new replacements. Even then it hadn't been easy; the Autozone guy had wanted to test the batteries, and then they'd ended up testing what he'd called "good," although, unbeknownst to the Autozone guy, I'd added too much water and they'd bubbled over, which he'd then taken for a failure.
The Subaru battery had come from Advance Auto Parts near the Hannaford in Uptown Kingston. When I complained about its failure, the drill was the same. A guy tested it, read the readout, and said he'd need to charge it for a half hour. So I spent that time shopping at Hannaford. One of the things I bought there was a small plastic squeeze bottle of Heinz ketchup to replace the unweildy 64 ounce bottle I'd bought back in either 2008 or 2004. (There was still a quarter of that bottle left, but it's been taking up too much room in our refrigerator for too long, and Gretchen had decided to throw it out.)
Back at Advance Auto Parts, the charge was done and the guy ran a test to see if it was good. Dispiritingly, he said it was. I don't know what it takes to fail one of these tests, but evidently not being able to start a car is not technically a failure. The guy said maybe it was my alternator or the corrosion on the terminals. When I said I'd charged it with a battery charger, he said "maybe it's your charger." But now he was saying two of my things were failing, which seemed unlikely. I walked out of there feeling a little like I'd been anally raped, mad at myself that I hadn't demanded to look at the little strip of paper his battery tester had printed out. As I drove home, I knew what I had to do. I had to poison that battery so it would definitely fail a test.
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