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"Here in my car", said 80s pop hero Gary Numan, "I feel safest of all". He obviously never shared the same stretch of road as me, then. Automotive tales of mirth and woe, please.

(, Thu 22 Apr 2010, 12:34)
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This question is now closed.

It was late, we were driving home in the rain, when I thought I saw something
Flying across the two-lane. It was white - like an angel (or like a curse) - there and gone in a second, in front of us.
(, Mon 26 Apr 2010, 10:01, Reply)
(roast) the system
I didn’t bother learning to drive till I was 26. I had a Vauxhall Nova for the first year or so after I passed my test until it was pointed out to me that at my age I could probably get something with a bit more poke and not have to sell one of my kidneys to afford the insurance.

So I bought a bright red MK11 Toyota MR2, some say ‘girls car’ some say it’s 'a bit wanky' but as far as I was concerned it was great fun. Decent amount of power, rear wheel drive mid-engined two seater. Cool.

The insurance however was not as hassle free as I had hoped. I called a number of companies and was getting well pissed off after a while. One company took absolutely ages taking all manner of pedantic details only to drop my call after placing me on hold. A complete bloody waste of my time.

So I called them back.

“Hello RipOff BloodyRacket Insurance, Vapid Bint speaking how can I help you?”
“Yeah I’d like a quote please”
“Certainly can you tell me the make and model sir”
“Toyota MR2”
“Engine capacity sir”
“2 litre”
“Is that a two door sir?”
“Erm no, it’s got four”
“Sorry sir our system tells me that is a two door car sir”

(Why they bother asking you these questions when they already have the bloody details in ‘the system’ was one of the things that had been bugging me)

“No, it’s got four doors”
“And it’s definitely a Toyota MR2 sir? Are you sure it’s not a Celica”
“It’s an MR2 it’s got 4 doors. Anyway a Celica is a girl’s car”
“My husband drives a Celica sir”
“Is he a girl?”
“Sorry sir”
“Your husband – is he a girl?”
“Certainly not”
“Well he drives a girl’s car, anyway its definitely got four doors – my door, the other door, the boot door and the glove box door”


“…erm we would regard that as a two door car sir”
“Fair enough, so do I get a discount for having less doors?”
“No, I doesn’t work that way. Have you made any modifications to the vehicle sir?”
“Yeah I put new mats in it”
“That’s not really a modification is it sir”
“Yes it is. The other ones were crap, they kept catching on my shoes”
“(sigh) have you made any modifications to the engine, exhaust, wheels or suspension sir?”
“Ok sir so...”
“Hang on, there’s that thing in the middle bit”
“The middle bit sir?”
“Yeah you know between the seats – next to the stick thing that’s not the gears”
“You mean the handbrake sir”
“Can you describe the modification please sir”
“Well it’s got these lights on it”
“Yes sir…”
“And some dials”
“What’s it called sir?”
“It’s a flux capacitor”
“Can you spell that please?
“Sure – ef el u ex cee ay pee y cee i tee oh ar”
“Sorry sir I’m not getting that on my system is it an in car entertainment device”
“Not really”
“What does it actually do sir?”
“It creates a temporary disruption in the space time continuum by exerting quantum effects on semi classical gravity thus subverting the chronological protection conjecture to permit non linear motion through time”
“It’s a time machine”
(, Mon 26 Apr 2010, 9:39, 4 replies)
My cars have all been utter shitheaps.
I've never owned a new car - they've all been bought for about £300 and then run until fucked. This is good in that it means I rarely have high insurance premiums, and repair bills are low as I just scrap whatever it is and get another shed.
There was one that brought me a lot of joy, though. It was a Renault 5 sold to me by a garage owner I know, who had once had reason to replace the engine block entirely. He'd gone down to the breaker's yard, picked up a new engine, and stuck it in.
Only thing was, the old engine had been a 1.0 litre, and the new one was a 1.4 litre. With the original gear ratios, this meant that it went off like a rocket in low gear. I lost count of the number of people in expensive Mercs, BMWs and so on, who were left standing at the lights by something that looked like a shed.
I loved that car.
(, Mon 26 Apr 2010, 9:35, 1 reply)
Mysterious Collision
We were exploring remote, rural New Mexico one bright, sunny Sunday. My friend was driving his parents' aging road yacht down an unfamiliar desert road when we approached the rails of a cattle guard (or grid).

Just as we got to the cattle guard, the car came to an instantaneous halt. My friend bloodied his nose on the steering wheel and I shattered the windshield with my forehead.

But what did we hit? Staggering out of the car, spattered with blood, we could see there was no obstruction to our travel, none at all. But we obviously had to have collided with *something*, right? But what was that *something*. Air? Unobserved cows? N-dimensional wormholes? Was this some bizarre trick? Did some unobserved person tie the back bumper to a fence post, perhaps? But how? What happened?

The explanation was strange. The car had been pitching forward-and-back on its aging shocks while rolling down the washboard dirt road. The car pitched forward just as we reached the first iron rail of the cattle guard. Under the car, the tip of the car's "A"-frame dipped far enough down to just clip the top of the iron rail. Resistable force hit immovable object. Bang! Immediate stop!

In addition, the impact damaged the suspension. The front tires splayed open at a frightening angle. The tires could no longer roll efficiently. Once we hit pavement, the splayed, smoking tires squealed like a chorus of hell's demons for the eighty miles back to civilization.

My friend's parents never believed the vengeful cattle guard story. They preferred to believe we panicked after driving over parking barriers.
(, Mon 26 Apr 2010, 9:33, 3 replies)
Exhaust gone on my car. Arrange to borrow dad's wheels to get me to the station in the morning. He can get my exhaust changed and then leave mine and take his. It is winter and the sun is very low in the sky. BANG. I never saw the skip. Must have hit it with some force though as I spun it 90 degrees. Near side of dad's car is back to the B pillar. Insurance quotes were fun for a few years. My Fiesta was worth a couple of thousand pounds tops. Dad's was a Ford Tourneo with wheelchair lift.
There was always a gap of a few seconds after I told them how big the claim was.
(, Mon 26 Apr 2010, 7:56, 7 replies)
Kid walking down the street
And a car pulls up next to him.
"Hey, want a lift?" says the driver.
"No thanks, I'm good" the kid replies.
"Come on, it's way better than walking," the driver persists.
"No, seriously, I'm fine, please leave me alone."
"I've got lollies and a puppy in here," the driver saus, leaning over to wave a paper bag of sweets.
"Just fucking listen to me, Dad" says the kid, "there's no way I'm getting in a Lada so just piss off home and I'll see you at dinner time."
(, Mon 26 Apr 2010, 6:57, 1 reply)
A Korean guy I knew
Was a lovely bloke, but a serious hard case. Former kick boxing champ, current Hapkido instructor, tough as nails.
I saw him at his car one afternoon with a huge dent in the door.
Me: What happened?
Him: Yeah... The keys got locked inside, I tried to get in with a coathanger... no luck so (Yah!) knee strike to door.
Me: Fuck! Wow....
Him: Nah, got hit by another car.
Me: ...oh...
(, Mon 26 Apr 2010, 6:35, Reply)
Apologies in advance for the depressing post
I was recently enrolled in a rather posh professional school with a class of insanely rich folks. One of the guys in the class had been through the Bondurant racing school, and had almost become a professional F1 racer. This is his story about a car. It's a bit hard to replicate, but it gave me chills when he told it to me.

His father bought him a car, I forget what it was and I know jack nothing about cars, so feel free to chime in if you know what it is. It was rare, apparently only five of them existed. It had about a gazillion horsepower. That's all I know about it. Continuing...

Derek took it out for a spin, tested the power, and decided that it was too much for him. He knew that if he kept the car, he was going to end up pushing it too far and would kill himself in an accident (side note: another gal in the same class had a brother who went to Bondurant, thought he was god, and did kill himself in a car accident). As he saw it, the car should be owned by some retired old man that liked knowing that he had the power, but didn't feel the need to use it.

So Derek decided to sell it. The only reasonable offer he received was from a man who wanted to buy it as a congratulations present for his sixteen year-old son who had just gotten his license. Derek tried to talk the man out of it because teenagers are dumb and reckless, but the man thought his son could handle it. The man was insistent, even after Derek flat-out promised him that if he gave his son the car, the kid would kill himself. Finally Derek wrote up a contract that involved, in so many words, that he had explained the risks and would not be held responsible for the inevitable death of the man's son.

Fast forward two weeks.

Derek gets stuck in traffic on the freeway. The traffic is stopped dead, and he starts to get a bad feeling. A few emergency vehicles rush by on the shoulder, and he starts praying that it isn't the kid. After being stuck for two hours, the traffic finally starts moving and he passes the accident scene. Sure enough, it's his car. What's left of it, at any rate. The car had lost control and hit the exit-ramp divider at a high speed, crushing the car and literally tearing it in half right behind the driver's seat. At this point he knew it was the kid, and the blood in the accident didn't tell a good story about the outcome.

A week later he received a phone call from the father, who sincerely apologized for not listening to Derek's advice.
(, Mon 26 Apr 2010, 6:17, 6 replies)
Not me, but a friend
For simplicity, let's call him Bob. After working a long night, Bob was exhausted. While driving home, a raccoon ran out in front of his car and gave a deer-in-the-headlights pose. THWUMP.

So Bob was already feeling bad about the fact that he had just snuffed out the life of a noble raccoon, when he noticed a thwump, thwump, thwump noise coming from the passenger side of his car. Oh great, Mr. Raccoon is stuck on the wheel. Bob pulled into his driveway and decided that he would just go to bed and deal with the roadkill the next morning.

He lay in bed, thinking about the poor raccoon. He hadn't looked at it, but it was probably messy. And Bob didn't want to peel all the parts of its carcass from his car. Maybe there was a car wash in town that would do it - they would get cases like this sometimes, right?

Bob lost sleep trying to plan his day around cleaning raccoon lasagna off his car. The next morning, exhausted, Bob went out to his driveway to survey the damage. As it turns out, there was no raccoon stuck on the car. Instead, the passenger-side seatbelt was hanging out, still thumping against the side of the car in the breeze.
(, Mon 26 Apr 2010, 5:44, Reply)
I name all my vehicles
Always have. I guess I always will.

My daily drive is a 1994 Ford Explod^Hrer with about 330k miles on it. He's starting to show his age, but Freddy has been incredibly reliable, and although he needs a new AC compressor (it seized), there's really no need for one in Colorado and so the pulley just spins freely now.

Occasionally I'll go out in my 1986 BMW 535i - a rocket ship in comparison. She's called Brunhilde; all Germanic solidity and toughness; a real no nonsense car, she is. If the tyres weren't so bloody expensive (non-standard US size, cost about $300 each), I'd drive her more often.

And then theres Jeff Jeep. One of the last CJ7s ever made, he's dependable, not at all flashy, not too bright, but just gets the job done without complaint. He's slated to be rebuilt as a rock-hopper soon.

Finally, my (ex) Triumph T595. WTF was I doing with a 1 litre fool(sic)-injected rocket ship? I remember once, still living in the concrete hell of Silicon Valley, coming off the freeway and looking down at the speedo, shocked to realize I was pootling along at 105 on Homestead Road in Cupertino. Talaria was such a little minx - it's surprising I never got into trouble with the Highway Patrol, on the receiving end of a night stick and a felony speeding or reckless endangerment conviction. Dang, I miss her sometimes. Wheelies in 3rd. A change of underwear needed about every other week.
(, Mon 26 Apr 2010, 4:08, Reply)
We were 14.
A touch long, but necessary to illustrate our Olympian stupidity...

Bill and I were staying overnight at Nick's farm, while Nick's ma and pa were off on a cruise. We decided we'd walk down to the small converted barn in the grounds of a large house in the village where Nick did gardening work (he had a key), so as to imbibe illicit liquids in privacy. Needless to say, we soon got bored as we didn't actually possess any illicit anything, so Nick decides it's off back up to the farm to phone his girlfriend Rebecca. They got keen to meet up, given teenage urges and a mutual absence of parental units. Rebecca didn't have any transport, and normally Nick would cycle the three or so miles to see her. We toyed with the idea of all cycling, but we didn't fancy it, especially not Bill. We alighted on the only reasonable solution we could, as unsupervised 14 year old boys in the middle of nowhere and surrounded by darkness: steal Nick's dad's Freight Rover tipper truck* and drive to Rebecca's house. Of course...

So off we bomb, down tiny narrow lanes with no moon, Nick driving, me in the middle and Bill on the nearside, designated to shout "CLOSE!!" whenever Nick's frankly elementary steering prowess threatened to land us all in a ditch or overturned by a verge small cliff -- his role was very necessary. After a hairy ride of much hilarity, we meet up with Rebecca; if she had doubts I didn't pick them up. I volunteered to ride in the tipper tray so Rebecca could have a seat while we drove back to the farm, which was hilarious fun, especially on a hump back bridge at 40. Rebecca hung around with us for about half an hour, until she had to go lest her parents come home and find she's gone. So back to her village we went, me in the back again and Bill at his nearside shotgun post. After dropping Rebecca off, we broke the speed limit on the way to nearby Framlingham and gunned around the Market Hill and the forecourt of our school (Thomas Mills if anyone knows it). We even drove up my road and crept around my house toying with the idea of surprising my mum (a good natured lady, but wtf!), but thought best not and hooned off around assorted lanes and villages before coming up with the genius fucking plan of going to Leiston. At chucking out time on a Friday night.

Gunning the motor up the hill of the high street, we were flagged down by a pair of coppers outside the Black Horse pub, but didn't stop -- because we genuinely though that a hand waving motion meant slow down, and that 'stop' was denoted by a static palm. How wrong we were. Heading up Station Road for home, having decided (too late) that we'd pushed our luck far enough, our world was soon flooded with blue lights as we were pulled over. I still remember how fucking scared I felt as Nick got out and the PC walked towards us, then questioned me and Bill as his Maglite shone in our faces. But, Nick had furnished us with a cover story before he stopped: that he was his older (licenced) brother Ed, and we stuck with it. Fuck knows how, but he got away with it, and the copper issued him a seven day wonder and off we drove. Cacking ourselves. Respective mums picked me and Bill up the next day. Later on Nick phoned to say Ed, after a lot of shouting and making it clear he now owned Nick indefinitely, had agreed to present himself at Leiston nick with his documents. Photocard licences were then a distant idea.

Fast forward a few days and I'm walking in the door from school, and my mum asks me if we'd taken Nick's dad's van the other night. I lied. "Don't lie!!" my mum shouts, losing it. Turned out that Nick's dad had taken Ed to task for something minor he'd failed to check on the farm, and Ed, who'd not yet visited the cop shop, decides (reasonably I think) to shop his little brother for the more serious crime. I believe Nick was dragged from his room and downstairs by his ear. A very friendly lady PC came round to my house to take a statement from me, but Bill and I were only cautioned. Nick got into ever so slightly more trouble, although it was all 'juvenile' shit that got redacted from his record when he turned 16. That said, I still suspect Nick's dad handed in his notice on his special constable gig earlier than he might have as a result. We never told anyone about the red diesel though...

All in all then, a good night's work really. We really showed half of Suffolk how to act like pure bred idiots. Length? About 35 miles I reckon...

*The linked pic is of a half truck Sherpa, but you get the idea...
(, Mon 26 Apr 2010, 0:54, Reply)
I am far too old to not drive.
I am also far too skint to drive, far too irresponsible to drive (in my more lucid moments the idea of some lunatic from the Ministry of Transport granting me the right to mow down pedestrians with a ton and a half of metal frankly terrifies me; if I ever do get a driving license I may just frame it), it is quite possible I have a residual base alcohol level that would cause a breathalyser to commit suicide, and most importantly I am literally too much of a spastic to drive.
Epilepsy removes you from motoring society until you've spent two years without ever once bouncing around on the floor like a tasered, vomiting, angry octopus; although given the considerations above I am in no rush to meet their conditions anyway.
I am fortunate enough to reside in an attractive city with excellent public transport and everything within walking distance (well...actually I live in Glasgow; I was only born in the aforesaid burgh).

As a result of all this, I have been behind the wheel of a car exactly three times. The first time was in our old white Ford Escort estate, when my mother, in an uncharacteristic bout of drunkenness, decided she was going to teach me how to drive. I politely (read; in mortal terror for everyone in a 50 yard radius, not least myself) declined to even turn the key in the ignition.

The third time was out on a drive with my girlfriend-at-the-time. Our drives are in fact my fondest memories of driving-related activities; where family drives down south to meet the relatives had stress, deadlines and arguments, my drives with her had meandering routes and pleasant scenery; where family drives had luggage poking you in the side of the head and bad cafe food, driving with the girflriend had smoking, music and illicit activities in laybys at night.

On one occasion out in the Borders, she persuaded me to slide into the front seat, take the wheel and showed me the arcane mysteries of the clutch and gearstick. Then when that was finished, she tried to persuade me to drive the car (a massive Volvo tank) along a deserted stretch of road. There was nothing but hills in every direction, but I was understandably nervous because of attempt two. I have to say...I don't know how people do it.
The feeling of turning the wheel ever so slightly and feeling the mass of metal you're used to as a non driver just rolling along in the same way as a bus or train obey your commands, speeding up or slowing down as you move your feet gently is quite frankly bloody unnerving. The fact that she was rather younger than me and was completely at home with all this also made me feel like a complete n00b. I gave it up shortly after I got a rabbit stuck in the tyres. Did you know small furry animals make an audible 'pop' when you flatten them? Usually you're travelling too fast to hear it.

The second time I was put in control was easily the best, though. And by 'best' I mean 'worst', which is why I saved it till last. Family holiday, campsite, a few years after the first attempt, my mum decided to try and teach me to drive again. We were parked in a kind of grassy enclosure, near the tent, and surrounded on three sides with trees. I'm fairly sure she was inebriated again. I just about mastered getting the engine in gear*, letting out the clutch and getting the car into reverse...oh no, wait, that's not reverse. How am I supposed to tell the difference between the gears?
The car leapt forward much, much faster than I was comfortable with...for about six feet, and bent the front bonnet into a neat V about a third of the way from one edge. I can't remember exactly what happened, because as the vehicle so elegantly nutted the tree in front of us, I did the same with the steering wheel. I was quickly ushered into the tent before any of the other hippies campers could see what had happened. I don't know if there's any specific charges that could have been brought against my mum...drunk in charge of someone in charge of a motor vehicle? Anyway, driving home for 400 miles at a maximum speed of fifty lest the engine go bang, with the massively deformed bonnet lashed down with rope to stop it trying to be the windscreen was fun. I started playing 'count how many cars pass us' with my brothers, but we got bored around the 600 mark.

Also, probably as a result of my mother's sheer embarrassment, I completely escaped being reprimanded for completely buggering the engine, bonnet, wings and headlights. God knows how much it cost them to repair.

So that's my driving experience. I own a bike (the pedal kind). I never use that either.

*I know I was using car terms as sexual references a moment before. I'm not here. That was your mum.
(, Mon 26 Apr 2010, 0:37, 2 replies)
I'm the only person in the country to have benefited from the Iceland volcano...
I sold my car last weekend. It was a 1994 Japanese import Toyota Supra, and I sold it to a fellow member of the Supra owner's club, who came over from Belgium, such was his desire to buy it (and the relatively low number of decent examples there are left now).

Due to arranging everything in extreme haste (I posted on the forum on Saturday that I was thinking of selling my car, he messaged me and told me he was interested, and it was a done deal by 1pm on Sunday), he didn't have a chance to convert his Euros into dear old English Sterling. We agreed a price of £2700, I Googled conversion rates on my phone and took 3050 Euros off him. Lovely jubbly! On Monday however, I realised my textbook error: I'd failed to take into account the difference I'd failed to take into account the difference between the buying and selling exchange rates. Thus my £2700 became £2460. Bugger, that was WAY below the lowest offer I'd been prepared to accept. What to do? A day of messaging people I knew who were often in Europe followed, all to no avail apart from an offer to take some of them off my hands.

On Tuesday (at the suggestion of the utterly lovely J Peasemould Gruntfuttock) I phoned my bank again, to ask if they'd be prepared to give me the Bank Daily Rate, rather than the tourist rate. No joy there, however they did tell me that due to the problems with flights caused by the volcano in Iceland, they were currently buying and selling at the same rate, so my £2700 became £2829. Result! :D

Sorry about the length; I tried to condense it but like the volcano it went on a bit longer than everyone expected...
(, Sun 25 Apr 2010, 23:35, 5 replies)
Citroen AX
My very first car after I passed my test about 10 years ago.

I bought it for a ton off a guy up the road from me. I promptly reversed it out of his driveway and into the side of a garage. Got to get the first dent in early, put my mark on it, y'know?

Anyway, it was a bag of sh*te. Stupid French design meant the steering wheel had a rather confusing single spoke that went to the side, and the pedals were slightly to the left of the wheel.

It came to a timely end about 2 weeks after I bought it when I blew it up on the M74 at Happendon Bank. I was touching 80ish going down a very steep hill on the motorway near Cairn Lodge services when all of a sudden a huge hole appeared in the bonnet and horrible black smoke started bellowing out from the engine bay. It was like the closing scenes to the Blues Brothers. Fibre glass box of sh*te!
(, Sun 25 Apr 2010, 22:42, 2 replies)

Oh, all right then. I drive a Fiat Multipla. Good to see the haters have been out already, don't we all agree that this is a beautiful car. Well, the reason I have it is that it's my parents' old one, and it's free - my dad still pays the tax and insurance; when I briefly felt guilty for this and offered to give it back to him so he could flog it, he said he'd probably still leave it taxed and insured and parked by the side of the road, so I kept it and don't feel guilty any more... besides, I pay for repairs myself, and since it's a Fiat, well, you know.

Anyway, it's quite a good ride really, six seats have come in handy a few times. Plus the three rear seats come out, leaving a LOT of cargo space when needed. And it's proved to be surprisingly durable for a Fiat. 230 000 km so far, it's had some repairs including a couple of new exhausts but the gearbox, clutch and *most* of the engine is original.

But there was this one incident. Student group trip, we were using a hired minibus plus my car for extra seats/luggage space. It was fine on the way out, but on the return trip (from the Eden project back to Exeter, via Looe to pick up a few people) the engine really started acting up. It'd shown occasional signs of this before, but now it was serious. Basically, severe loss of power, plus it sounded and FELT incredibly rough at idle and low revs - and it's a petrol engine, so it's normally barely audible at idle. It got us back home, though it wasn't much fun to drive - the car was fully loaded with six people plus luggage, and by my estimate I was getting at best half of normal power from an engine that most people would consider barely adequate under normal conditions. Going up the A38 from Cornwall into Devon I would floor it on the downhill bits, reaching 95 mph or so, and by the time I got to the top of the next hill, I'd be doing 15 mph while constantly flooring the accelerator. Being overtaken by tractors gets a bit humiliating after a while.

Back home, dropped it off at the garage at the next opportunity. Turns out two of the fuel injectors were basically fucked (so by my reckoning it had been running on two cylinders!?!?) and the other two were about to join them, so the whole set needed to be replaced. At just over £100 each, plus a new ignition coil. Amazingly, after driving it ~100 miles with only half the engine working, it suffered no other lasting damage, and after the injectors got swapped out it ran as good as new and I've put about 15000 miles on it since then.

There was also the time the gearstick came off in my hand while shifting. But that was actually just the plastic handle, I made it home by shifting using the bare metal stick it had been covering and then superglued it back on.
(, Sun 25 Apr 2010, 21:55, Reply)
The Black Nads of Purgatory.
This could be the start of a common theme. As I’ve said before my brother is a cunt. But he is also a really stupid cunt. He rarely thinks things through and this is one of those tales.

Not so long ago I became an uncle for the fourth time, Four of the little snot-goblins and all belonging to Bruv. Luckily his wife is a bit more sensible than him and figured out what was causing it, so off he goes for the old two bricks and an aspirin (NHS job). Fortunately for him the surgeon didn’t have my sense of humour and he got a couple of needles in his nutsack, apparently it REALLY HURT. Good I thought, makes up for the time you covered me in cowshit. So, minor surgery over he goes to the car park and gets ready to go home. Yup. Gets ready. Puts on leathers. Puts on helmet. Not only did he have a helmet he was one. He’d gone to the surgery on his motorbike. A homeward journey of 48 miles faced him.

Swallowing the couple of paracetamol the nurse had given him, he set off, complete with sinking guts and a rising nausea. Now other than being a wanker and a cunt, he is actually pretty good on a motorbike. He realised that the pain wasn’t too bad so dropped a cog and put some speed on. He was doing about 85 or 90 when he heard the siren and spotted the lights. Pulling over he prepared for the worst. The police biker who had pulled him took his gloves off and walked over, getting his notepad (or whatever it is they use) out on the way.
“Well, Foggy, in a hurry?” Oh no, he’d gotten a sarky bastard. By this time the local and the paracetamol were both wearing off and things were getting a bit achey. So, squirming like a selotaped hamster, he explained things while wincing and constantly adjusting his nads. At this point the God of the Nutless smiled on him. “It’s alright son,” said the copper “I remember what it’s like. Follow me and we’ll have you home in a jiffy.”

So he was escorted with blues and twos all the way to his front door. Unfortunately the ride home had taken it’s toll and he had bollocks like black grapefruit for a fortnight.

My brother, the stupid, lucky cunt.
(, Sun 25 Apr 2010, 19:50, 2 replies)
Don't have a car story
Why not?

I don't own a car. I've never owned a car. I don't have a driving license. I don't even own a provisional driving license. I have had, maybe, 4 driving lessons in my life.

I have no interest in learning to drive. I have no use for a car except maybe twice a year. I have no need for ID that would necessitate getting a license.

So why, pray tell, do people consider me to be a bit of a freak for being like this? I have no desire to be a plumber or a paedophile or, even worse, a Daily Mail reader. Does all of that make me a freak as well?
(, Sun 25 Apr 2010, 19:33, 17 replies)
My first bike, the mighty CG125
I got my first motorbike a couple of years back. I had began an apprenticeship in Derby, and found that a 3-4 hour commute (depending if central trains could be arsed to run trains) by bicycle and train was as expensive as it was painful. Seriously, its no wonder no-one uses public transport. Anyway, due to my youthful age and being the possessor of a penis, a car was waaay out the question insurance wise. So Dad very kindly loaned me £700 for a fairly tidy example of hondas finest L plater. One CBT course later, another loan from Dad for the £400 insurance bill and I picked it up from the garage. Just like my CBT-lights on dip beam, shoulder check, indicate, pull away, clutch in and lift the gear lever up to go into second, clutch out...WEEEEEERRIINGbrr said the engine as it drove absolutely nothing. So, first problem-the gearbox is different to the one I did CBT on.
Got home to find the documents I'd tucked under my jacket had fallen out, so hopped on my bicycle to find them, lying in the leaves on the pavement. Phew! Right, lets go have a play.
And what a wonderful ride it was. The little bike pulled like a tractor, propelling us to insanly high speeds-35, 40, 45...ooh, think I'll slow down there! There is nothing to match the terrified enjoyment of a first bike.
Think I'll have a rest now. Ah, a layby.
Brakes, down the gears, pull in, pull the front brake on to stop, oh bollocks I'm on my side. Turns out the front wheel locks up on gravel if you apply that brake. No damage to me or bike, so I eventually carried on.
Later that evening, Mum was looking at it and remembering her bikes. Then she stopped remembering her bikes, and started wondering why the tax was dated June 2007. Ooops! So, back in the shed it went until I had £15 for Mr Darling et al.

The next few months formed winter, which is a great introduction to bikes. Every morning I shivered my way to work in the dark, and every evening I shivered my way home in the dark, due to my working hours. When I saw the sun at weekends I feared I may turn to dust. One of the joys of L plating is you don't think about plod with ray guns, meaning the little CG got nailed everywhere, once my nerve could match the phenomenal power (ha ha).

Then in February, I was happily trundling along a dead straight bit of road in broad daylight, headlamp on and a hi vis I borrowed off Dad making me look like Jordans fake tan. Noticed a car coming towards me, indicating to his right. Saw him stop to let me past. Got within about 10 feet of him, and saw him begin to pull across my path. Then I saw the road about 10 inches from my face.


The bloke was very lucky to be old and frail, otherwise I'd have beaten him senseless. After the usual ambulance/plod etc, Dad trailered us home. I then had to pay £500 excess to get the bloody bike fixed, because I'd been foolish enough to get fully comp insurance. I'd only just paid Dad the previous loans too. Still, the scar on my elbow was worth £600, which went on my gorgeous Honda CB400/4 after I passed my test.
The 125 wasn't finished though. It emerged from the garage looking a bit scraped, but still had the familiar growl. I was over the moon, I had my bike back!
Not long after I passed my test, but kept the 125 whilst I saved up for a bigger bike. My girlfriend at the time wound up working in Bristol, after 6 weeks of which I began to miss her. The solution? Ride a severely battered 125 from Derbyshire, a good 350 mile round trip. Cost about £15 of petrol and the bike didn't miss a beat, despite being thrashed back.
The bike still refuses to die. I now use it as a winter hack, when salt and ice threaten to damage my lovely 400. I've doubled the mileage since I bought it, meaning it rattles and clatters like the tin man falling down the stairs. I got my Mum, Dad and little sister back on bikes with it too, which goes some way to excuse filling the yard with 3 more bikes...
(, Sun 25 Apr 2010, 19:31, 4 replies)
I used to have a Chrysler minivan.
It was the early 90s, and I had just had an old car that I had been driving bite the dust in an ugly way. I had to come up with a reasonable replacement, so I bought a minivan that was in my price range.

The only thing was, this particular shitbox was one that had been in someone else's price range as well, so it was the most stripped down minivan I had ever encountered. It had a stick shift, which I've never seen before or since in a van, but at least it ran pretty well most of the time.

One of the fun things about it that I discovered is that if I was in overdrive and I held down the gas at full for a few moment and then took my foot off of the pedal I could make it backfire with a sound like a shotgun going off. I think that what happened was that because it was a crap engine it was pushing a fair bit of unburned gasoline through so that it accumulated in the muffler until I let off the gas, at which point it ignited.

Once I had discovered this, of course I had to enjoy it. I learned how to time it almost exactly, so if I saw a bunch of highway workers standing around leaning on their shovels I could make it go off right next to them. I would then be treated to the sight of them leaping off the highway, shovels flying through the air as they took cover. (Note, though, that I never did that if they were actually working- just if they were standing around doing nothing.)

Going through tunnels was always fun because a backfire in there sounded like a cannon going off. Driving past the house of someone who I didn't like became a fun game, especially late at night. Someone being obnoxious on the road, tailgating me and generally being a dick? One good boom when the driver was level with the back of the van was enough to make them need Depends.

Then one day I was doing this and built up a good size charge, and the van suddenly sounded like a tank. Upon investigation when I got home I found the remains of the muffler ripped open like a bag of potato chips, so I had to get a new one fitted that week.

That didn't stop me from doing it, though.

The van finally died a sad death when the motor mounts gave out and pretty much destroyed the drive train. I then got myself a ragged little Honda Accord which served me well for another five years or so.

All of my cars have been manual transmissions, but none of them have backfired like the old van. Even now when I drive past a load of highway workers leaning on their shovels I think back fondly on that car...
(, Sun 25 Apr 2010, 15:45, 5 replies)
The A1
As the title suggests, not about a car but the road.

This is the embodiment of the proverbial Highway To Hell.

The particular bit that concerns me is the stretch between the M18 and the M62.
Why is it that "Farmer Giles" is able to take to the road in rush hour in his tractor and do a serene 25mph twixt one field and another? This is absolutely the wrong thing to do when cars (particularly mine) are fast approaching at more business like 70mph...I've had many a brown trousers moment like this believe me! And as for our lorry driver friends; just because you are travelling 1mph faster the the twat in front of you doesn't give you the inalienable right to attempt to overtake, thereby causing heavy braking and a queue so long in the outside lane, it actually disappeared over the horizon in the rear view mirror. I actually clocked one of these "knights of the road" last week. It took him TWO miles to complete the passing of the lorry in the inside lane! Oil tankers in the North Sea could probably overtake faster than this!

Rant over.
(, Sun 25 Apr 2010, 14:33, 10 replies)
The wind
sometimes causes my car alarm to sound.

So I'm always hearin' my car.
(, Sun 25 Apr 2010, 14:06, 1 reply)
I once rolled in my car.
With a nice bit of skunk.
(, Sun 25 Apr 2010, 13:54, Reply)
Having a lift
Having a lift off a married couple. Although his Capri is his pride and joy he is collecting his new car in a couple of weeks. The parking space is a bit tight and as he starts manouevering there is the unmistakable sound of two cars coming into contact. His comment of "It's only your car dear." did make the atmosphere rather chilly for the rest of the day.
(, Sun 25 Apr 2010, 13:44, Reply)
My ex's brother Mike is a lovely guy but got into some stupid situations when he was a teenager. One night at the age of 17, his parents went off overnight to a boozy party some 40 miles distant, leaving him home alone. Also home was his dad's brand new company car, a BMW 320.

Temptation proved too great, and very quickly Mike found himself and two mates razzing down a back lane in the beast. And very soon after that he found himself upside down in a field. All three lads crawled out of the wreckage, and as they were not far from home, dispersed back to their homes.

Imagine how the miserable lad felt as he went back into the empty house. He decided to pick up the phone and call his dad to break the news, not entirely honestly. "Your car's been stolen" he told his slightly tipsy dad. "WHAT? Have you rung the police?" was the reply. So dutifully Mike reported the 'theft' to the police and waited for them to turn up.

Of course, when the fuzz arrived they took one look at the state of Mike (cuts, bruises and his ragged shirt still on) and immediately twigged what was afoot. Pitifully Mike led them to the wreck. Apparently they'd never seen a crash so bad without a fatality - the car now resembled a borg cube. It transpired that Mike had hit a gatepost, a tree stump and a low stone wall at around 70mph, performing a couple of flips over a hedge into its final resting place. Time to ring Dad again, sobbing. "I stole it, Dad"....

Somehow though he was not charged with anything, and even though he wasn't insured, his Dad eventually got issued a new company car, but it was a lot less swanky than the Beemer. So if anyone got punished, it was his Dad. However, two weeks after the crash, things had finally calmed down enough for Mike to let his parents know that his arm REALLY hurt and could they go to hospital please. Turns out it had multiple fractures and he'd just been too ashamed to cause any more upset at the time.

What a silly sausage!
(, Sun 25 Apr 2010, 13:24, Reply)
That car that was filmed being shunted sideways along the motorway
was a Clio. I'd just bought one and was delighted to see how tough and safe they seemed.

Until I leaned against it and dented a panel.*

*piss off.
(, Sun 25 Apr 2010, 12:51, 2 replies)
Dave the Brummie
Dave was a guy I worked with years ago- a very funny Villa supporter who was working in London.

He had a really shite old Y reg Datsun Cherry gold/brown hatchback. I never aspired to one ever and still dont, BUT... the reason he liked it was pure class:

It had a cassette player and a LW/MW radio, that worked at the same time.

So, in Dave's words, "you can listen to The Smiths AND the football on radio 5, quality!"

I always think its the one thing missing from new, top of the range exec motors these days!
(, Sun 25 Apr 2010, 12:51, 2 replies)
2 little pearoasts for you, sorry. (They do both involve cars AND vomit, though, so should be ok?
#1 18th birthday Guiness story
Briefly a mate gets collected from the pub at the end of his 18th birthday session by his Sister in her 1 year old Fiesta 1.3 SuperSport. (That dates it to about 1984.) To cut a long story short he fell asleep as soon as his arse hit the seat, but woke up just before they got home, just in time to projectile vomit over the inside of the windscreen. It ran straight down the 'screen into the demister vents and thence to the heater. Any what didn't go there just continued down behind the dashboard. Sadly, on the mk1 Fiesta the carpets are installed before the dash, so you can't get them out. At all. Not even if your little brother has managed to get a lungful of guiness puke down behind them. Yuk. She had to get rid of the car a couple of months later when the winter weather took hold, as it couldn't be driven without the demisters, and now it couldn't be driven WITH the demisters either. She couldn't sell it as no one managed to complete a road test (it really was that bad) so she p/x'ed it with the local used car lot. (Came back with an XR2 so some good came of it). By coincidence, some years later, I ended up working with a relative of the car dealer and the car was legendary, they'd sold it several times but it just kept coming back...

#2 18th birthday lager story.
Apprentice type at the Saab garage where I used to work got taken out for a posh Chinese by the entire staff of the garage. Towards closing time most of the staff head off for last orders at the local boozer. I'm a pig so I was still face down in the Chinese (we ordered too much and I hate to see it go to waste etc). By this stage the apprentice (whom we'll call Matt, for that is his name), had imbibed enough of that Chinky lager to make an elephant puke. It wasn't his first time on the juice, but I doubt he'd ever been on a binge that had been "maintained regardless of cost" before. He was doing really well, poor lad, and had even made a good showing in the food department. At about 1am they're stacking chairs rather obviously so we take the hint and head off. I go home and the Parts Manager agrees to take Matt home in his lovely Saab 900 Turbo. Mistake. Matt is still awake and giving directions for the first part of the journey. By the time they reach the huge housing estate where he lives, he is, however, out cold. After more than an hour of driving around and prodding Matt and asking "is this your road?" and getting nothing more than a groan for a reply, the Parts Manager stops the car & beats Matt into some semblance of Sobriety, enough for him to volunteer a 'phone number. Matt's dad was not impressed as it was by now going on 3am. (Why do people have children then get upset when stuff like this happens, it's like they didn't do this stuff when they were young?) By the time Matt's dad had got dressed and come and found them Matt had woken up enough to try to puke out the window. He missed and instead completely filled the (large 3 door) door pocket with Vermicelli Noodles in a sea of Lager. This didn't all fit in the door pocket so the rest was used to make a small lake in the front footwell. Needless to say the smell was impressive, aided by the fact that it was mid-winter and you would freeze without the heater. The happy ending is that the parts man was outside his house again at 7.30 am to take him to work so that he could valet the car... Nice touch.

I've just read through some of my old postings, and quite a few seem to be about poo / pee / vomit horror with a loose motoring connection. I'm not sure what that says about me as a person?
(, Sun 25 Apr 2010, 12:31, Reply)
Betsy the Chevy
My first car was a 1987 Gold colored Chevy Celebrity. Solid car mechanically. However the thing was rusting away when I got it and I had it for about 2 years. It gave up the ghost when my mechanic told me - "I've replaced the fuel lines with rubber tubing, you have about 3 months at best to get a new(er) car". And So I did. With what was his wife's old car, a 1989 Ford Escort with only 68K miles on it (this was in 1998 mind you). That car was nothing but a hassle. I cashed in my saving bonds and an inhertance, to get it. Got it Christmas Eve 1998, had an accident with it going to pick up a girl for dinner. Not used to having the gear shift next to the seat (Chevy's was on the Stearing column), I was a bit slow in shifting into reverse and someone (I found out slightly later it was an illegal) backed up his jeep into my front bumper and smashed it. I should have known then that the Ford was crap (and it was, and I will never own another). But I had that car for another 3 years and replaced it with my parents oldsmobile.

I bought a brand new Honda Accord in 07, and I love that car. Smooth ride, I've only just turned over 20K miles. Life is good. Big trunk (boot to those not in the US), roomy interior, 30mpg highway, about 19mpg city - but since I mainly drive highway, its a good investment.
(, Sun 25 Apr 2010, 12:17, Reply)
Not me.....
....my brother: a total fuckwit when it comes to cars. Every panel of his first motor, a vomit-coloured Vauxhall Chevette, was absolutely covered in bumps, bashes, scrapes, and all manner of evidence that he had about as much control over the car as a blind amputee with parkinson's.

He was apparently unaware that the metal barrier on the inside of a large roundabout is to be avoided. Actually, now that I think about it, he was really very good at scraping his car along the barrier in a retarded stunt-man kind of way.

His Cortina's petrol tank fell out on the main road (probably to escape the spastic driving the car). His Astra was a fucking death-trap: holes in the floor, front wheels that rattled at speeds over 40mph, engine mounts that looked like they were made out of rust, and a lovely rubbery burning smell when you pressed the brake pedal, and his 4-door Escort was technically only a 3-door as the passenger door would physically come off the hinges if you opened it.

But his Achilles heel of the automotive world is any rear wheel drive car. After about 2 days of being permitted to drive our dad's Capri, he spun it on a main road, hitting 2 walls, a tree, then finishing in a hedge. (But I wasn't speeding your honour...)

My brother had to move back home to get back on his feet after a messy break-up with his ex-cunt, and he needed transport to get to work, so after much convincing that he would "be careful, I promise" he was named on our dad's insurance policy.

On his first journey back from work, he spun our dad's 3-series BMW out of control coming out of a roundabout, hit a kerb and managed to clear a fucking 3ft fence and landed it in a field. (But I wasn't speeding, your honour...) 10/10 for technique, bro.

The car was a write-off, since the entire side of it was caved-in and both axles were buckled. I laughed but my dad did not.
(, Sun 25 Apr 2010, 11:05, 1 reply)
Traffic Police
I was working at a small software company on a project for Bedfordshire Traffic Police. The aim was to install a system in their storeroom so that they could keep track of their equipment. The officers would have to log in and scan the items that they were taking out or returning. There were a couple of forms that would be automatically printed out to be filled in by the officer if he returned a breathalyser or mace spray in a "used" state.

I had recreated these forms from the samples I had been given but I didn't have a logo image to use so as a temporary measure and to get the spacing right I used two small images on the forms, the Rainbow characters, one form had a George logo and the other Zippy. I requested a copy of their logo several times from my contact at BTP but it was not forthcoming.

As the project neared completion, a date was agreed when I would install the system in their storeroom. I made a few more requests for a BTP logo to put on the forms but by the Friday afternoon before the Monday morning installation, I still hadn't received one so George and Zippy remained. "Fuck 'em" I thought and went home.

During the following week I got the system up and running and showed the officers how to use it. They loved the Rainbow logos, everyone who saw them had a good laugh about it. I explained that it was just a temporary thing until I replaced them with the BTP logo. By the end of the week, as the system was up and running without problems and the officers knew how to use it, they were told by their boss to start using it for real.

Several weeks passed before I was finally emailed a BTP logo and could patch the system with the updated form designs. That's several weeks of forms being filled in each time someone was breathalised or had to be restrained with mace spray that featured a small picture of a Rainbow character. I'd love to know if any of these documents ended up in a court room and what on earth the prosecution and the defence made of them.
(, Sun 25 Apr 2010, 11:01, 1 reply)

This question is now closed.

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