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Saturday, December 31, 2005

Well, that geeky 2005 wrapup is going to have to wait, because we had yet another weird incident with cars.

New Year's Eve might be a bit more interesting than you expect....
-- Rockie Gardiner, Scorpio Forecast, this week's Rockie Horoscope

Interesting. As in the Chinese curse, "May you live in interesting times."

Tomorrow is New Year's Day. We are still going to Little Tokyo to enjoy the food and serene good times. But we aren't going to be driving part of the way, because Midori-chan, our 1993 Japanese-designed, Mexican-built Ford Escort station, is now a partially crushed, non-street legal car.

We had gone to 99 Ranch Market for some last minute fixings for the noodle soup for tonight's dinner. I also went to Office Depot to get some more fliers made for Anime Los Angeles. I made 50 foldy fliers and 100 flat fliers. I figured the foldy ones would be easier to leave around at the New Otani Hotel during Oshogatsu festivities. Richie was unable to find a parking space in the little mini-mall that houses Office Depot, 99 Ranch, Sam Woo's Barbecue and 20/20 Video, so he parked the wagon on Victory Boulevard, across the street from the mall.

When we were getting ready to cross the street, we saw a huge commotion near where we parked the car. An ambulance, fire engines, and a couple of cop cars.

"Shit! That's where I parked!" shouted Richie.

We dashed across Victory and saw the disaster before us. A car was rolled over onto its roof in the street. And there was a big fucking dent across Midori-chan's roof, and an indentation on the hood. The windshield was reduced to glass powder in places, and warped in a weird way. It was as if King Kong stepped on the car. Or Gojira. Or something.

"The car, it flew, and landed on the other car. Then it fell off." -- an eye-witness account of the demise of Midori-chan.

We didn't see it happen, and I feel gypped. According to the LAPD, the culprit car, a silver Honda Accord, went out of control and leaped the curb. Somehow or another, the car -- this is weird, folks -- went up the guy wire used to keep the telephone/power pole steadied for a few feet, then fell off this high-wire directly onto Midori-chan. The car flipped over and landed upside down on Victory. It's like a car stunt from a bad '70s redneck movie, only there was no stunt director choreographing the action. Someone should have been rolling film, or tape, or something.

The Speed Racer (Go Mifune) wannabe actually seemed only shaken-up, not harmed. His Mom picked him up to take him to the hospital just in case, and she alternately yelled at him and was in tears, glad that he was alive after that bad of a crash. The police and the guy's mom assured us that they were insured, and that we wouldn't have to pay for fixing (doubtful) or replacing (likely) the car. However, we can't do anything about it until Tuesday, when everyone gets back from their day off on January 2nd.

At least this is not like what happened when Chibi-Caru, the Chevy/Toyota we had prior to Midori-chan, bit the dust. If you remember, Richie got hit by a woman who was clearly at fault, but had no license, no insurance, no ID, and spoke no English. She got away with it. At least this time the guy had a driver's license, ID, and insurance that checked out when the cops ran a check on it. And there is a police report on file about the incident. He will not likely get away with it. We might have to get "lawyered up" to get our due, but there are records about the incident now.

Damn. What a way to end the year.