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Is it over yet?

It's been a rough August over here at #ParadiseHeld.


In addition to my myriad medical woes (which I am diligently trying to schedule procedures for now that I've hit my insurance deductible), other ick is afoot.


For starters, in case you missed my Facebook post last week, Zach took his car in for some pre-emptive brake repairs. And if you didn't know this - because I definitely didn't - the entire tire must be removed in order to evaluate your brake pads. At this particular establishment, they claim to remove all 4 tires for a proper inspection - which is perfect. This will be important later.


Unfortunately they gave him a quote of nearly $1,000 so he said no thank you, I'll go to my regular mechanic. So they put on his tires and he went on his merry way.


Before making it to his mechanic he decided to do some Lyft driving, so he picked up a passenger - with an infant - and headed out. Some time in to his ride - I don't know how long - he said he heard a noise and the car was wobbly. Assuming he had a flat, he took the nearest exit and was only going about 15mph.


If you are familiar with the Dallas landscape, he had been on 75 and exited Mockingbird. Luckily he made it all the way over to the turn lane and was maybe 4 car lengths from the corner when his front left tire FLEW OFF.


And in another stroke of luck, it was not a high traffic time. His tire did hit a truck a few lanes over but no damage was caused. No one was injured for which I am eternally grateful. I shudder to think how much worse it could have been if he had been driving at normal speed on 75 when it came off.


His passenger was pretty kind about it though she was upset that she would have to walk to CVS to order a new ride. And it couldn't have been a 3 minute walk from where they were and that's coming from me.


Zach said he contacted Lyft but they were little to no help. He called a tow truck which we had to pay for. He also spent 4 hours in the Texas heat waiting with his car for the tow truck - they sent one at some point but it wasn't the right kind so he had to wait for a special truck and even then he finally left it.


He had his car towed to a different location than he had been to that morning but they told him it was okay - he didn't mean to, he just had the wrong address. The manager at the new location was very kind, helpful, and apologetic.


So they completed the repairs and replaced his tire. Now he is waiting to take his car to the body shop so they can fix him all up (they needed to order some parts). Technically his car is drivable.


Technically.


Here's where things start to get a little sticky.


First you should know that Zach's primary source of income has been Lyft for quite a while. He left Tiff's Treats some time last year - I think in the fall? that's not important - because he got a "big boy" job working in an office. Only on his first day he realized it was a scam. He'd already quit Tiff's and he did keep looking for something else but started driving Lyft to pay his bills.


He also does color matches for Rob so he can spend his time selling.


In other words, Zach has 2 jobs both of which necessitate him driving his car. Also Lyft will not let you drive a beater and since he reported the accident to them he cannot drive again until he can prove the repairs have been completed.


He also cannot do Lyft in a rental car.


I'm telling you all of this because fixing his car is not enough. Zach's not looking to get rich off this but he needs to pay his bills and we think he should be compensated for the reasonable loss of income. Which he told the manager at the original location.


Who is now backpedaling and is saying they never removed his tires in the first place!


So to recap: store has already completed the brake replacement on the front tires, replaced the tire that flew off, and is paying for over $2,000 in body repairs. But none of it is their fault because they never took the tires off? They just gave him an original quote of nearly $1,000 by "looking through the wheel".


Does any of that make sense to you? Why would you spend over $3,000 repairing a car you allegedly didn't touch? And they are finally paying for a rental when he does take the car in.


Well, technically I am paying for the rental and he will reimburse me for that and the tow in 10 - 14 days.


Make it make sense.


I don't know what is going to happen but once it is all said and done I will gladly provide the name and location of the place. And I will also keep you posted on if they make it all right.


And in other news for Zach, he has been trying to get a job at Jellyfish Lighting in an official color matching capacity but he kind of got jerked around on that. They really lowballed him AND would not guarantee 40 hours a week. He needs a job - with benefits. And preferably something that doesn't have him in the car all day.


I wish we could help more but we are tapped out. Thankfully he has generous grandparents that are giving him a helping hand.


But that's not all! Rob's been having a rough summer...sales just aren't what they were last year. He may not even hit his sales goal this month which is bad news considering his is our only source of income.


I'm continuing to look for work while simultaneously feverishly working to get Karen's Dallas business going. I'm still hopeful I can make it a full time gig by January...which is pretty ambitious. But we need more steady income. Barring that, I need to find a good job and those do not appear to exist anymore.


Honestly it is astonishing. I know I'm a broken record here, but I am on week 17 of unemployment (which does not include the entire month of April since I was paid for that). I have applied for 128 jobs since I started keeping track. I have had one pre-interview - that I evidently failed.


I even applied for 2 different jobs at the corporate headquarters for the company from which I was laid off and I was rejected for both of them. Without interview. And one of the positions was a SENIOR PROCESSOR - which was my job title!


I can only hope that one of my other fellow processors that was laid off got the job.


And I am reluctantly willing to take a pay cut because it just doesn't look like I'll be making that kind of money anymore but I refuse to do the same job as before for half pay. But also if I'm taking that big of a pay cut then I almost have to work from home or it doesn't make financial sense.


That sound you just heard was my head hitting my desk.

THUNK.


Repeatedly.


This economy is so fucked up right now. Everyone knows that $15 an hour is not a living wage and yet that is the bulk of what I see. I see it so much that I get excited when I see $20 an hour and in reality it isn't actually that much better.


And I understand that mortgage has been hit hard by the interest rates. I get it. But paying your staff half of what they were making is not the answer. Processors were already underappreciated I am astonished if they can find anyone to do the job now.


And not only that, but the few processor postings I do see they are asking the processor to do more. For less pay. And they must be getting tons of applications because I'm not getting called for any of them.


Stay in school kids. Learn a skill - you don't have to go to college. But don't end up like me - 52 years old and apparently unemployable.


I'd go back to retail except my back would hate me and I still would need another car. Which I neither have nor can I afford.


THUNK.


What else? Oh! Did you know you can get mild appendicitis? Apparently that's a thing. Xander evidently has it. They are treating it with fluids and antibiotics but if the pain gets worse I guess he is supposed to drive himself to the ER.


THUNK.


I did just ask him and he says he is feeling better. So at least there's that.


We are full up over here. Can we please not have any more health/economic crises over here please? Thank you.


THUNK. THUNK. THUNK.


If you will excuse me I am going to go finish deep cleaning the house so I can decorate for fall.








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