As if things couldn’t get any worse . . .
I woke up Thursday morning and dragged myself out of bed at 6:30. I took a shower and dried off. I stood in the bathroom in my towel putting on makeup and messing with my hair. Charlie gave me a peck on the cheek and said he was going out to start his car so he could do some cardio at the gym before work. Five minutes later, as I was dragging the mascara brush over my lashes Charlie came bursting back into the bathroom, breathless and red-faced.
“Is a stolen car sufficient reason to call 911?” He panted at me.
I’m sure I stood there with my mouth hanging open for a while, mascara in hand.
“I guess so,” I said.
Charlie told me my car was gone from the driveway. Kate has just left and had passed Charlie in the hall, must have heard me in the bathroom showering, so it didn’t make any sense what he was saying. If Kate had just left, wouldn’t she have noticed my car was missing?
I recall standing in the bedroom, pulling on tights and a skirt for work, continuing to get dressed as I listened to Charlie on the phone with the police. His back passenger-side window had been busted out and his car was trashed. They’d pulled everything out of his glove compartment and armrest. Somehow or another they’d gotten in to my car and had driven off with it.
I put on shoes and a sweater and walked into the living room where I stood for a minutes, watching Charlie talk on the phone.
When he hung up, he said the police would be there “within an hour.”
“I guess I’m not going to make it to work, then,” I conceded. That’s about when I finally started crying.
It took a while to sink in and is still hitting me in the stomach every 15 minutes or so. Tonight at work it wasn’t so bad. I’d forgotten at one point for at least an hour. But every time I remember, I get a sick feeling, then I get angry, then I get depressed. When the punks stole the CD player out of my last car, it was such a violation. I couldn’t even afford that CD player. The only reason I had it installed in my car was because my parents had given us a Circuit City gift certificate. I wanted to smash in the faces of the people/person/kid/whoever that had done that to me and scream at them, “I don’t have any fucking money, you asshole! Why would you steal from someone who’s poor?!” Meanwhile strangling the shit out of them.
I’ve been fantasizing about doing this to the people/person who stole my Sonata. I could barely make the payments on that car, the oil needed changed, and I haven’t had it much more than a year. I have been working two jobs for almost a year to make ends meet, and Charlie has had two jobs for almost two years. Yet some punk shithead walks up to our own house and helps himself to the one thing we own that’s really not worth that much anymore.
The insurance company set us up with a rental that’s a piece of crap. The alignment is all wacky, the brakes squeak, it had hardly any gas in it, it’s a non-smoking car, there’s no CD player, and nothing in it is automatic. What’s the point of a rental car if you’re not going to live it up? My standard options were pretty sweet: CD player, power everything, cruise control, etc…
The best part is the rest of the day: first we went to a coffee shop down the street but forgot to feed the meter, so we got a parking ticket on the rental car we’d had for an hour. The only time I’ve ever been in that coffee shop where I didn’t have to wait in line for ten minutes. We were in and out within five and I got a frigging parking ticket.
Then I realized that, since I’d started the new job on campus Wednesday, I’d had all my personal information in the car: social security card, birth certificate, high school records . . . I almost threw up. But, don’t worry, I found that stuff in my purse at home. WHEW!
Then I realized that the garage door opener was in the car. They could waltz into our house whenever they wanted. So we disconnected the power to the garage door.
But the ultimate moment came when Charlie realized he’d kept a spare key to my car in the armrest of his. What are the chances they’d have stolen my car if they hadn’t had a free key just staring them in the face as they sifted through Charlie’s car looking for money?
Also, they got my only two scarves, my only winter coat, the last $12 I had to my name that I’d hidden in the ashtray for emergency gas money, and two textbooks and notebooks from classes.
So, to you little shitheads that took my car, my coat, and the only money I had before payday: You better fucking hope I never get my hands on you.
[pretend this car is blue]