Do you ever stop to think how some of the simplest errands involve complex decision making?
Yes, I think too much. This is not breaking news.
Today, I had to do an irritatingly necessary and expensive chore: get gas and wash my car.
Of course, I did this at the same place because I don’t have time to wash my car on the weekend by hand. Nor do I have the tools to do it, but that’s another story.
Confession: Last year, I didn’t bother to wash my car once. All the men who read this blog just audibly gasped, I know it.
In East Sacramento, the gas station choices, much like the grocery stores, are kind of crappy. In fact, the nearest one with a car wash is way the hell over on Fair Oaks and Watt.
There are closer ones? How many unprotected left hand turns do they involve? Will I basically be playing Frogger with my car just to get it back into traffic when I am finished conducting my automotive business?
Not only do I have to consider the level of driving stress involved, but I also have to account for the clientele that might be lurking about at said gas station. Is the place known for the random windshield repair guy trying to solicit my “business”?
Or how about the guy out in Natomas who tried to get me to give him some money with a fake sob story about running out of gas and needing to go pick up his sick mother at the airport.
Sorry, dude. Just don’t take my iPhone, please.
Then of course, there is the stress of getting the actual gas into the car. You know…the germs, the possibility that someone will steal my purse out of my car while my back is turned for a second…
Finally, I’ve survived to the point where the receipt with the car wash code successfully printed at the pump… It’s like the world’s dumbest slot machine. Will it print this time? Will I have to walk 10 steps and forget the pump number only to have to cut out of line when I’m almost to the cashier?
Now I’m in the wash and wondering if I should shut my car off or just let it idle.
What do you do?
My car shimmies nervously if I let it idle for more than 5 seconds. I imagine some giant puff of black smoke to explode out the back. Of course, I think it’s also about to do that sick Model T cartoon sputtering.
But if I turn it off, I think the damn engine is going to be mysteriously flooded by the overzealous spray engulfing my car.