Not Charging

by wjw on December 7, 2023

The day started with my car crapping out due to a broken starter. So the rest of the day consisted of me waiting for AAA to try to start the car, then calling local garages to see where I could get it fixed, then finding out the earliest anyone could take it was Tuesday.

Because I have to drive to Albuquerque for treatment nearly every day, that means a car rental. i drew a sexy-looking black Dodge Charger and almost immediately got reminded why black is not a good color for a state like New Mexico— it was a sauna in there! The air temp was 53 but it was over 80 in the car.

Then I discovered that the car’s speedometer was set in kilometers, which does not mesh with our speed limit signs, which are miles per hour. I tried to find a manual to discover how to change it, and there was no manual.

The day improved mightily after we made a pot of cioppino for dinner, a lovely tomato broth with fish, shrimp, scallops, oysters, clams, and a lobster tail. I had mine with a couple Aperol spritzes, cocktails with a relatively low alcohol content, just enough to pleasantly increase the air of contentment following dinner.

Tomorrow I’ll drive to Albuquerque in the Charger and probably get my first speeding ticket in a long while.

Andrew Price December 7, 2023 at 1:20 am

Hey WJ, just wanted to send my best wishes for your treatment and recovery.
My copy of VotW sits between a boxed set of the Foundation trilogy and The Lord of the Rings. On the same shelf are Iain Banks, Fred Pohl, Vernor Vinge, PKD and Jim Vermeer. I thought you might like to know that.
Warmest regards

wjw December 7, 2023 at 4:14 pm

Thanks for the high placement!

And thanks also for the good wishes.

M December 9, 2023 at 10:49 am

There’s a PDF version of the manual for most items available somewhere online. Here is a link to the 2022 Dodge Charger for instance:

Oofoe December 17, 2023 at 9:48 pm

For what it’s worth, if you find yourself in this situation again, the number six is useful to have around:

50kph x 6 = 300, shift to get 30mph
80kph x 6 = 480, or 48mph
120kph x 6 = 720, or 72mph

You can do the same thing the other way, but with a bit of complication:

50mph x 6 = 300, shift then add to original 50mph to get ~80kph.

Yes, there’s a bit of slop (correct conversion factor is 0.6214), but this works well enough that I can do it quickly in my head when driving when units change. No tickets yet, however… Your mileage may vary. (Sorry, couldn’t resist.)

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