Wednesday, September 06, 2006

Pointless car wash post

In my neighborhood is a do-it-yourself car wash. In back, by the barbed-wire fencing surrounding the adjoining auto body shop, are the vacuums. When I get to the do-it-yourself car wash, I first go directly to the vacuums. I take all the trash from my car, toss it in the giant waste bins they have, then work my magic on the floor, my mats and my seats. This takes about ten minutes, because I don't vacuum my interior very often. When I do, I like to be thorough and make the job last.

The vacuums cost a dollar in quarters to use. I usually do two rounds' worth. This costs me two dollars. I find the quarters in my center console.

After this, I start my car and drive it into one of four "bays." In these bays are a multi-purpose hose, a foam brush and a coin operated control panel with a timer. For four dollars, you buy yourself six minutes of washing time. An alarm sounds when you have one minute left so you can put more change into the machine. There's a sign in each bay telling you that mechanical work is prohibited. The signs are there because in the past, people have gone into the do-it-yourself car wash and worked on their cars. It would never occur to me to do this, but if it hadn't ever happened, the signs wouldn't be there. That's how it is here.

First I rinse, then I turn the dial to "soap" and coat my car with suds. Then I turn the dial to "foam brush," and the foam brush starts to bubble and hiss. The foam brush smells like bubble gum. I like this smell. I've been using the do-it-yourself car wash for several years, so my brain associates the bubble gum smell with a clean car. The sensation is pleasant, and makes me want to go have sex with women who are either non-caucasian or here on a visa. This, evidently, is how I roll.

After rinsing, soaping and brushing, I turn the dial to "tire cleaner" and spray some kind of green shit on my tires. I'm not sure if tire cleaner is really green, but I trust the do-it-yourself car wash. Then I set the dial to "wax," and cover everything until the droplets formed by the mist begin to bead. Finally, I go back to "rinse," and hose the whole damned thing down until time runs out. This is how I wash my car. The Armor All and window cleaner can wait until I get home.

The problem with the do-it-yourself car wash is that it's infested with Guidos. The Guidos are there. They hang out in back, by the vacuums, taking up inordinate amounts of space for inordinate amounts of time. This is fine, because they're paying to be there, and they're working. Guidos work very hard on their cars. They spray and they wipe and they wipe and they spray and their brows are furrowed in concentration. I envy them. I wish I could maintain that kind of focus on getting my car clean, but after a while, my energy tends to dissipate. Unlike the Guidos, my resolve begins to fade. After twenty minutes or so, I'm thinking, "I want to get out of here."

The problem is, Guidos need a soundtrack. The problem is, Guidos turn their stereos up as loud as they'll go, tuned to New York's club music station, and pretend they're on the dance floor while they're polishing their rims. The problem is, two Guidos will be listening to the radio, while another is playing a CD.

What you have then are Dueling Guidos.

Guidos need this music backing them, so what you have , everywhere you go around here, is doom-chick-a-doom-doom-DOOM-chick-a-doom-doom...CULO!!!


Everywhere, this "music." And what you want to do, when they're inflicting "CULO, MAMI, CULO!" on you, is line them up, side by side, and bash their mutated fucking faces in with your fists until the brims of their hats face directly forward like they should. To hit them so hard that the resultant trickles of blood form streaks on their spray-tans. What you want to do is walk over and reach in and turn their radios off. And when they protest, what you want to do is rip their arms off and stick them up their asses.

Especially the fat ones. One of the Guidos at the do-it-yourself car wash was fat. He wore sunglasses and the brim of his hat was turned to the side. His car was an Acura, and it had a spoiler. This is a disease. This child has a disease, and what I wanted to do was beat it out of him. I wanted to be the antibiotic that treated his virus. Fuck him, man. Fuck these Big Pun wannabe dudes in their velour sweatsuits with their earrings and their hats pointing east and their unjustifiable arrogance. Fuck them all.

One word: conscription.

Then I went home.