Fifteen minutes, even more snow shoveling, a serious arm workout, and a whole lot of cursing later I try the engine again. It still doesn’t start up. Less than a second after that, I completely lose it.
“Fuck!!! Fuck, fuck, fuck, fuckity fuck!” I scream, banging on the steering wheel repeatedly in anger and irritation at yet another failed attempt. “You stupid, useless piece of shit!” I continue to yell, punctuating each word with another slam of my palm against the wheel, the dashboard, and any other parts of the car my hands can reach as all the pent-up anxiety and frustration finally bubbles and explodes to the surface.
A slew of more insults and obscenities leave my lips, each one directed at the rickety, barely functional sardine can that has been in my life for the past four years.
It’s a memento of my grandfather’s. It was probably the fourth or fifth car he’d owned in his life and he couldn’t bring himself to get rid of it, like most of his possessions. You could say my grandfather was a bit of a hoarder. And even if I can’t understand why, this car meant a lot to him. It’s the only reason I refuse to sell it or put it up for auction or otherwise get rid of it all together.