Random Bitching Put Into Perspective

I’m working from home today. Partially because I have the beginnings of a nasty cold, but also so I could take my car to the Nissan dealer to get it looked at. On Saturday I drove through what I thought was a puddle – but it turned out to be the mother of all potholes. Since that point, I noticed when I accelerated, the engine was making a bit more of growl than normal. I figured I’d done something to the muffler, and sure enough, Nissan called me this afternoon and told me the flange that connects to the muffler to the tailpipe (the big long one that connects the muffler to the catalytic converter) underneath had rusted out and basically had a big hole in it.

But of course it’s all one piece. So Nissan’s solution was to replace the muffler and the tailpipe for the low, low price of $1013. (And of course, they didn’t actually have the parts on hand, so everything would have to be ordered). And it cost me $99 just to get this information from them, because that’s how much they charge to put the car up on the lift to look at it.

Um. No.

So, I took it to a local place that does custom work. They’re gonna chop out the rusted part and replace it. For $131, plus tax. It will be done in the next hour or so. Seeing as I’m past warranty anyway, it’s a no brainer, never mind the fact that I could buy a sweet aftermarket exhaust kit for $500 or less if I really needed it. Just irks the shit out of me that the dealer’s stuff is marked up so much. WTF spends $400 on a tailpipe? It’s a couple of stainless steel pipes, yo. That’s it. (Except for the flange, apparently. How convenient.) Hopefully it will work out.

But in the meantime, here’s the perspective part. I use the blog to bitch about a lot of small random things that are going on. It’s a good place to vent, even assuming anyone really cares that much about what’s happening in my life. It certainly isn’t *everything* that’s going on. I don’t talk about politics or religion or my sexual escapades (or lack thereof. *snerk*)

I found out the other day that one of my high school friends whom I’d lost touch with had gotten married and had a couple of kids – their oldest is about Lucy’s age, and then she recently had a little boy. He’s 10 months old.

And he’s got liver cancer, specifically Hepatoblastoma.

And now she’s stuck going back and forth between her home and CHOP, dealing with feeding tubes, dealing with the fact that his hair has started falling out because of the chemo, dealing with a 3 year old little girl who doesn’t understand what’s going on or why her parents can’t spend as much time with her right now.

Cancer is a hot button for me, mostly because my mother died of a particularly horrible form of it about 8 years ago. It’s unlikely I’ll ever really get over it. But how much more wretched must it be to watch your own baby go through something that?

I’m not sure I could.

I’m not even sure what my original point to the blog was, except I find the concept really upsetting. It makes me wonder why I bother to bitch about the small things at all, because compared to something like that, it’s *all* small stuff.

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