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Thursday, November 11, 2004

Fixing Dolly

I drive a Mazda Protege that is cluttered with coffee cups, props from shows I did two years ago, directions to friends' houses, tapes (no CD player) and Mardi Gras beads. The car is green and has a big sports bra on the front. Because my car has a big bra, I call her "Dolly".

Dolly is a little bit sick, I think. She is making a very high-pitched squeal when I drive her. I can't describe the sound, but it resembles nails on a chalkboard. Actually, the car sounds a little bit like Mariah Carey.

I've been told it may be a problem with one of the belts. Pony's friend, Chopper, rattled off a bunch of other possible problems last night at the bar. I think he mentioned checking the dance belt or the bible belt. He might have said something about an antennae or alternator or alpenhorn as well.

I keep trying to pop the hood. I know that is usually the first step to fixing a car. I tried "opening the hood", but was told that is the wrong terminology. You open a door. You pop a hood. Unless you are in England. Then you do something else entirely. I think you ring the lorry or boot the bonnet or something.

Anyway, every time I try to pop the hood, the trunk opens. I tried pushing the button on the steering wheel to see if that would pop the hood. Every time I push that button, a loud blaring honk resounds. Presumably, this is an alert telling me I am pushing the wrong button. The other buttons in the car don't make any noise when I push them, so I guess the steering wheel button is the most dangerous one to mess with. I'm not touching that one again!

I've tried everything. I opened and closed the glove compartment. I even removed all of my gloves from there first. Like most people, I keep a couple dozen pairs of gloves in my glove compartment. One of my friends has a jockey box in his car. He keeps underwear in it, but he's odd. He's from Canada or Zambia or something.

Back to my problem. I would change my wiper blades to see if that's causing the squeal, but I lost the manual to my car. I've tried driving the car both with and without the keys. I've tried several different driving outfits, but am not sure it makes a difference. When I wore just my robe and a shower cap, the sound of my car was still loud but not as loud as the people on my street shouting and laughing at me.

Help! I welcome your suggestions. Now, if you are one of those smart mechanic types (you know the type - people who can make pies and do math and stuff like that) and are thinking of telling me to try reclining the driver's seat a bit more, don't bother. I tried it, and the squealing persists. The only thing I've found that seems to fix the Mariah Carey squeal is if I counteract it by playing Christina Aguilera very loudly in the tape deck.

It seems Christina trumps Mariah when it comes to squealing.

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