Old car batteries (and other heavy things)

This morning I got to work with a charged jumper box and tried getting Shanu’s car (1999 Toyota Camry) working again. A few weeks back we realized the battery was out and after a lot of trying we finally got it started, only to have it fail again. “Probably a sign the battery needs replacing,” Shanu told me as he put away the lithium jump starter back into its case. Those things really are a life saver, if I lived someplace cold, I would not leave the house without one.

Knowing nothing about cars, this morning I thought “Maybe if I get it started and run it for a solid hour it will come back to life,” so I set out to do just that.

I had only just put both hoods up when a Security Ops employee came by. Apparently he used to be a mechanic, and he offered to help. After a half-hour of struggle we get the car running, but it dies on the next start-up. Diagnosis: dead battery. I’ve always wanted to apprentice with a mechanic and have them explain every part under the hood to me so before we part ways I make him explain a bunch of things to me. Knowledge get!

I unhook that sucker and bring it to O Reily Auto Parts (good job radio advertising) — talk to the guy for a while and he’s like “it’s the same manufacturer for all these batteries, they just have different labels and you pay for the warranties.” So I bought el cheapo.

Tonight we had Ethiopian with Shanu’s friend from high school, Jinsol. It was so nice to finally meet her after hearing so many stories — she came out for a friend’s wedding in San Ramon but took BART from Berkeley to see us. Jinsol is among her counterparts for my [kev/lisa/andrew]: they were dorm-mates through all of boarding high school, so I was more than pleased to finally make her acquaintance.

It’s still a bit sad to me how we can’t talk to all our far-flung friends from high school or even college to keep them updated with our lives; it’s just not sustainable. I feel super lucky that Kev & Lisa are still near me after all these years (and now KP/Onur/Chaitan). Makes me never want to move from the Bay Area even though I talk about it all the time.

Also Chaitan really needs to move up to the city already. I always feel bad that he misses out on Friday happy hours and stuff because he’s living down in Saratoga.