Something New #40 – Look Ma, No Tire

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April 6, 2011 by Darlene McC

This Something New wasn’t something I did as much as something that happened to me.  Sure, I’ve been in car accidents before.  I’ve had flat tires, I’ve been rear-ended (3 times), and I’ve even had one of those accidents that was “supposed to kill me”; but there’s just something about the spectacularly ridiculous nature of this one that warrants a “Something New”.

Saturday I was up in the Green Mountain State for my last snow board bombing trip of the year.  I am, by no means, good at snowboarding, but despite the soreness the next day it’s a lot of fun.  After a long trip up from the city on Friday night we opted to sleep in just a little before heading over to the mountain.  I haven’t had a car since moving to the city so we were in my friend’s ancient and beat-to-shit pickup, Bertha.  (For the record: I’m the kind of person that appreciates the kind of person who has a pick-up truck with a milkmaid name).  Bertha has had it rough in life; but they try to be good to her.  She’d just had fresh rotors and breaks put on.  It was a home job, but if you want something done right you do it yourself, right?

We were pulling off one of those beat-up dirt roads that makes me a little home sick for my country roots and out ‘onto the paved road’ when the back end fishtailed a little.  Nothing big; in fact, we both thought it was just a patch of ice.  After a few hundred feet of acceleration the truck shuttered and dropped a little.

“Aww, a flat.” I uttered as we moved off toward the side of the highway.  I turned to see my friend nod just in time to see the left rear tire bounce past his window.  I gaped; and then a bit wider when the hub cap followed.  The entire wheel mount had popped clear and the various bits were rolling out into the snowcovered field.  While he called his parents and AAA I climbed out and bounded into the thigh-deep snow to retrieve the tire and mount.  The lug nuts were a little ground and some of the threads stripped; we hadn’t made it far.

To clarify a little further, the night before we’d been going 75 on a major highway for about 4 hours.  We are fuc&ing lucky!

AAA came, the truck was towed, and a nice fellow by the name of Mr. Riley and his son fixed it up for the next morning.  The rest of the weekend was spent bombing down the mountain.  Best part (besides not being seriously injured)?  This all happened right in front of the Long Trail Brewery, so when we went in to wait for our ride they gave us extra beers on the house!


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