Transportation Car - Berkeley CSUA MOTD
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Berkeley CSUA MOTD
2022/05/27 [General] UID:1000 Activity:popular

2005/9/9-11 [Transportation/Car, Transportation/Car/RoadHogs] UID:39592 Activity:nil
9/9     Crack NOLA police force in action... "[T]he police taught everyone
        around here how to loot. They were the first to bust into the
        grocery store down the street and the Wal-Mart a mile or so up
        the road. He also says they took to breaking into car lots in the
        days after the storm and driving off with brand-new Escalades. I'm
        not sure whether to believe him, until a cop car drives buy towing
        what looks like a mint-condition Corvette Stingray.
        \_ LA and NO in particular have had endemic corruption for
           decades upon decades.  Such corruption breeds incompetence.
           On the best of nights NO is out of control and lawless; throw
           in a flood and you see the result.
        \_ Just for argument's sake, it would make sense for them to heist
           SUVs in place of patrol cars, and to bust into shops to distribute
           goods to people, but it doesn't sound like that's what happened
           (although to be fair, I wasn't there...)  -John
2005/9/9-11 [Transportation/Car] UID:39586 Activity:low
9/9     I used to have Farmer's insurance. But they kept jacking up the
        price from $800 to 1200, so I switched to AAA. After having them
        for 3 years, they also raised their price from $800 to $1200.
        Now I'm looking for another insurance. Does anyone have a similar
        experience and what can you do about it?
        \_ I've had 21st Century for 12 years.  I've not had any problems
           like what you describe.  I've heard of GEICO doing the "bait
           and switch" thing from more than one person.  Don't know about
           AAA or anybody else.
        \_ Are you getting tickets or making claims or something? My
           insurance generally decreases a small amount each year.
           insurance generally decreases a small amount each year. I have
           21st Century Insurance and really like them. I've had AAA in
           the past. I hear good things about GEICO.
           \_ Nada! AAA jacked up my cost by like $300 this year. Then they
              mailed me a letter saying that since I've been a good boy,
              they'll give me a $100 policy holder's divident. Bullshit.
              \_ ?  That's really odd.  I use progressive, so far I've
                 been pretty happy with them.
                 \_ This used to happen to me when I was insured by AAA.
                    When I called AAA on the increases, they would come up
                    with excuses like they reclassified my car or my
                    neighborhood to be riskier.  AAA is completely inept and
                    inefficient, and they really just suck big donkey
                    balls.  I'm Allstate now.  We'll see what happens.
                    \_ Allstate is a little bit better than AAA but still sucks.
        \_ What KIND of insurance?
           \_ Automobile
        \_ USAA
           \_ YES!  USAA and NFCU have my undying gratitude for turning my
              entire financial situation around over the last 5 years.
        \_ Mercury... Mercury seems to always have the lowest rates for good
           \_ Perhaps, but when selecting insurance do consider more than
              the rate. Not that Mercury is bad. I've also heard it's
              good. However, I went with the lowest bidder once and when
              I needed to use it I was disappointed with the results. I
              have had 3 claims with 21st Century (one injury accident
              which was my fault, an accident which was not, and one in
              which I was hit by someone carrying 21st - when I had AAA
              myself) and I've always been very happy with the outcomes.
        \_ I just got a $53 check from AAA for dividen or something.
2022/05/27 [General] UID:1000 Activity:popular

2005/9/8-10 [Transportation/Car] UID:39566 Activity:nil
9/8     People who have rec'd parking tickets in SF, have any of you
        used this service:
        It seems borderline "too good to be true". ok tnx.
        \_ <DEAD><DEAD>
2005/9/1-2 [Politics/Domestic/President/Bush, Transportation/Car] UID:39419 Activity:low
9/1     In the light of gas shortages, doesn't it make sense for the
        GOVERNMENT to say something about conservation? In my country,
        we get government messages on TV regarding typhoon, gas shortages,
        electricity conservation, and general things to help calm the people.
        Doesn't the US government care about its people?
        \_ President Bush "hoped" people would conserve gas ... Of course that
           immediately caused a run on gas stations, producing the opposite
           result ... You have to remember the faith-based reality the current
           administration lives in: there are no shortages, nothing ever runs
           out and the invisible hand of Adam Smith and/or God always provides
           in the end.  That makes it a bit harder to deal with reality.
           \_ What is your name son? We would like to talk to you, in
              private.                                  -The Bush People
        \_ US EPA:
           US DOE:
           These sites have been around for years.
           \_ This is as useful as having it on display in the bottom of a
              locked filing cabinet stuck in a disused lavatory with a sign
              on the door saying "Beware of The Leopard."
              \_ Care to help spread the word?
        \_ The "government" cares more about protecting the profits of
           corporations and getting reelected.  Remember the "John Jerry
           thinks we should tax gasoline so people drive less" ads?  Very
           effective if totally fabricated.
           \_ No, where can I find this ad?
                \_ I can't find the ad but here's a reference to it:
2005/8/31-9/2 [Politics/Domestic/President/Bush, Transportation/Car] UID:39400 Activity:nil
8/31    Exactly how deregulated is the gasoline industry? In the light of
        less gas due to Katrina, isn't it possible that they pull an Enron?
        \_ Why? There is no need to fake a crisis.
2005/8/30-9/2 [Transportation/Car] UID:39367 Activity:nil
8/30    Holy shitpackers Batman.  Katrina hits just before Labor Day weekend,
        the biggest driving weekend of the year.  How high will those gas
        prices go?
        \_ $.50?  more?
        \_ $2.97 at Shell on Lawrence and Kiely this morning, I'm guessing
                             \_ Aren't those streets parallel?
                                \_ Sorry I ment Kifer.
           over $3 by this weekend.
           \_ Is this for 87 octane?
              \_ Yes.
           \_ Tower Gasoline in San Francisco, which generally has the
              cheapest gas in the city (which isn't saying much) has the
              following prices today as I recall:
              $3.07 for 87 octane
              $3.15 for 89 octane
              $3.25 for 92 octane
        \_ Roughly 25% of US refining capacity is in the area.  High.  And
           no, they won't come back down after everything is cleaned up and
           back to normal.  Invest in energy companies.
2005/8/26-29 [Transportation/Car, Transportation/Car/RoadHogs] UID:39297 Activity:nil
8/26    Hawaii caps gas prices:
        \_ Won't oil companies just sell the gas for Hawaii in other states?
        \_ In other news, the Hawaii state legislature failed economics
           \_ The Hawaii state government has been failing remedial econ
              for quite some time now.
        \_ Damn I'm glad I no longer live there .. gas lines suck, just ask
           your parents!
2005/8/23 [Transportation/Car, Transportation/Motorcycle] UID:39226 Activity:moderate
8/23    I saw a commercial for Geico Motorcycle insurance yesterday. I guess
        this is new since I've never known geico to do motorcycle insurance.
        Anyone given them a try?
        \_ I have them and am quite happy. Don't even get one point though,
           or your rates will go up. -ausman
        \_ Geico and Progressive provide motorcycle insurance and are not
           always the cheapest. If you have an auto insurance, they often
           offer "recreational vehicle" insurance, which includes your yacht,
           motorcycle, and in some cases your LearJet or Citation X. They
           usually don't advertise this but they do that. I have my motorcyle
           insurance through AAA but I'm switching to something else because
           they keep raising the price. Here is my biggest gripe with
           insurance. For the first year or two it's pretty cheap, then
           they figure you're sticking with them (even without a single
           accident) and they keep raising the price. Fuckers.
           \_ capitalism at its best.  same for my sbc dsl service.  they
              offer new users at $14.95 per month, while old users have to
              renew their 1 year contract at $26.95 per month, or they
              will raise the price to $49 per month.  fairness and
              customer loyalty means nothing to them.  they just want
              to milk as much as possible out of you, and have a very
              short term view on running a business.  so you either pay
              more or call them and complain, switch, etc., wasiting
              your invaluable time.
              \_ Left wing socialist rant alert!!! Under capitalism the
                 nature of competition drives down the price. If you don't
                 like your provider, you switch to something cheaper or
                 better. Stupid liberal rant.           !jblack
                 \_ You know, if you ignore the first sentence of pp's post,
                    it is completely apolitical.  Don't have to be a socialist
                    to hate SBC.
                 \_ hehe, call it whatever you like.  I just don't
                    like to play games with these companies.  they keep
                    setting various traps for their customers.  for
                    instance, if I missed the letter saying that if
                    I don't renew the contract at $26.95 for one year,
                    I will suddenly see my bill increase to $49.  I
                    am the type who will gladly pay a little more
                    as long as I don't have to deal with these types
                    of crap.  And a lot of the things these phone
                    companies do like some of those fees they tag on
                    to your phone bills turned out to be illegal.
                    and of course the switching of your carrier
                    without notifying you.  another example was MCI
                    whose long distance service I had been happily
                    using for some time, until one day, after WorldCom
                    bought MCI, they suddenly decided to increase
                    the rates through the roof.  We all know where
                    Ebbers is headed.
2005/8/22-23 [Transportation/Car] UID:39219 Activity:kinda low
8/22    How much would gasoline cost if it all had to be made from coal
        gasification processes?
        \_ How many licks does it take to get to the center of a tootsie pop?
           \_ How many fingers can you fit up your ass?
              Let's find out.
              One... ToWHOOOOOOOO... Three...  Three.
              \_ How many tootsie pops can you fit up your ass?
                 \_ What this thread needs is a danh link.
                    \_ I am now positive, full of sunshine and bunnies
                       and no longer collect such things. - danh
                      \_ Where are you storing the bunnies?
                      \_ Up yer ass, which is why only 3 fingers fit.
                       \_ Got a new g/f eh?
              \_ Two in the goo, and one in the poo.
        \_ coal gasification is an expensive process requires a lot of
           capital investment up front.  The end process of it is more
           close to natural gas than typical petro fuel you put into your car.
           while coal gasification has a lot of benefit, lowering gas price
           is not one of them.  And FYI, petro industry has little incentive
           to gasify coal cuz Bush country just relaxed the environmental
           standard on tail gas emission in its "clear sky initiative."
           \_ taunt the bill as you like, we will have clear skies by the
              year 4010
           \_ What is the name for the process that Nazi Germany used to
              convert Coal into something they used to run their tanks then?
              The reason I am asking is because I regard the cost of doing
              this as a reasonable "maximum" price that gasoline can go to.
              \_ STFW for Friedrich Bergius, or the Fischer-Tropsch process.
                 I'm not sure of the correct spelling.  I think the Germans
                 used 3 different processes or so--also look for PAG -- used
                 during WWII, but I'm not sure if that's just for engine oil
                 or also fuel oil.  I think National Carbide and IG Farben did
                 a lot of research on these.  -John
2005/8/22-23 [Transportation/Car, Transportation/Car/RoadHogs] UID:39217 Activity:moderate
8/22    Do gas pumps automatically shut off when it reaches $50?  Yesterday I
        was using my Discover Card at a 76 station, and the pump stopped at
        exactly $50.00.  Was it just by chance, or was this a security feature?
        I could've tried topping-off and see if it would continue pumping, but
        I didn't think of it until after I returned the nozzle to the pump.
        \_ $997...$998...$999...$000. "Woohoo!!! Free Gas!"
        \_ This is a security feature put in by evil left wing liberals to
           keep from us good conservatives from driving our Ford Exterminator
           on the street.
        \_ Could be something locally set up. Gas is pricey in that area.
           The only other security feature I've seen is you can't use the
           same credit card for gas within X hours.
           \_ It's Cupertino.  I've never reached $50 at the gas pump in my
              life.  -- OP
                \_ What kind of car, max gallon, and the type of gas filled?
                   \_ Toyota Sienna, max 21gal, the lowest grade gas (whatever
                      it's called at 76).  Pump stopped at 17.863gal.  Please
                      no flaming on driving a big van.  My alternative is to
                      to use two small cars to haul the family which would burn
                      use two small cars to haul the family which would burn
                      even more gas.  -- OP
                      \_ Minivans are the safest and most practical vehicles
                         on the road. You will get no flames from me.
                         -car hating critical mass guy
                         \_ What about the overbreeding?
                            \_ Actually it's me + wife + kid, plus my bro-in-
                               law + wife + kid, plus my in-laws, a total of 8.
                               Just fills up an 8-passenger Sienna.   We go out
                               together every weekend.  I don't drive the van
                               on weekdays.  -- OP
           \_ Reminds me of that time I drove from oakland to las vegas,
              averaging 80-110mph. Got gas using my credit card at some
              station in Bumfuck, CA.  Got to Vegas in record time and
              tried to check-in the hotel and they said my card was
              declined, they called the credit card company for me,
              handed me the phone and I had to verify my identity
              to the representative. Turns out they had locked my
              card because their software program decided there was
              no way I could have used the card in Oakland, Bumfuck
              & Vegas in an approx. 6.5 hour period.
              \_ I think it would be funny if cops could give you speeding
                 tickets based on math in this case.
                 \_ "Your honor, I was flying in a chartered chopper ..."
        \_ Yes, typically.  You have to swipe your card again as another
           \_ Is it a feature to keep criminals from using the card, or to
              keep you from pouring gas all over the station?
              \_ I don't know why.  My guess was something about the credit
                 card companies' policy of the customer being liable for $50.
                 But that's just a guess.
                 \_ the preauth is usually set around that. i think there's
                    a roadshow answer to this question a while back.
        \_ Since gas prices keep going up, this is going to start making
           getting gas more inconvenient in the future ...
           \_ GOOD. I'm happy. Move closer, ride a scooter, less traffic,
              less pollution. GOOD. I'm happy.
              \_ Spoken like a student.  Let us know when you have a job and
                 a spouse and own more than the clothes on your back.  Maybe
                 a few kids, too.
              \_ I don't own a car, and rely completely on bike for transport,
                 but spiralling gas prices are still very bad if they get
                 out of control, even for us non-car people.   The price of
                 oil could easily get out of control to the point that it
                 fucks up the economy badly enough that we have no job to bike
                 to, and can't afford the goods at the store that we bike to.
                 Also, I'm not going to bike to see my family who live 3000
                 miles away.
        \_ Getting gas off 98th Avenue, Oakland (yucky, 3 panhandlers in lot)
           they limited my SUV (rented for camping, refilling) to $25 via
           my credit card. I had to pay cash to get more than that.
           Then in Millbrae (nice neighborhood?) they limited the Lexus SC400
           to $50 (didnt fill it up all the way). By the way, I'm only
           5'9" but the SC400 is too short, especially with asian-hair that
           sticks up, my hair touches the roof of the car. Annoying car.
           But headroom issues belong in the other thread above this one.
           \_ Are you saying that there's a station agent who watches what
              kind of car you're filling, and punches in a limit on the fly?
              \_ No. Those limits to apply to anyone, any single transaction.
                 Just different neighborhood have different limits.
2005/8/19-22 [Transportation/Car, Transportation/Car/RoadHogs] UID:39180 Activity:moderate
        What kind of car is this? I'm trying to find more info like name,
        model, mileage, and other things. Thanks.               -kchang
        \_ If you're interested in a small car, you might want to read
                -- mini owner
           \_ Note that is from 2002. And the Neon, Cavalier/Sunfire, and Civic
              and Corolla do all have higher driver deaths than even the
              midsize cars. The Jetta is also not "tiny" as they say; it's
              a bigger car than a Civic.
              \_ But in general, some of the most dangerous cars to be in
                 are SUVs (or light trucks as some people call them).
              \_ 3 of the 4 worst performing cars are subcompacts. Indeed, it
                 seems like midsize cars had the best ratings. --mini owner
        \_ SMART car. Owned by the greater DCX corporation.
           \_ I saw quite a few of them in Canada. I wonder if they're in US
        \_ You buy it, and you go straight to Dr. Yeung.
        \_ I believe the guy driving the car is a 25 year old Bengali.
        \_  and
        \_ When you get into an traffic accident, it conveniently crushes into
           the shape of a coffin, saving you funeral expenses further down the
           \_ And the solution is to have everyone buy bigger and heavier
              cars, thereby, starting an arms race and making everything,
              in general, more dangerous?
              \_ What solution?  Is there a problem here?
                 \_ The problem is that people getting bigger cars to make
                    themselves safer is a fallacy because once other people
                    start doing that, your "big" car will become dangerous
                    to be in because of other bigger cars on the street.
                    Meanwhile, your car will become more difficult to
                    control because of the extra weight and size and you're
                    more likely to get into an accident in the first place.
           \_ The problem with modern light (small is irrelevant) cars isn't
              being crushed; they have really strong frames (good ones do).
              The problem is just inertia.  Your car will be hurled by the
              big SUV and when you then hit something else you and the pinball
              car will come to an abrupt stop.  This is why buses don't have
              seatbelts.  In general they don't need them.
              \_ When a bus rolls over, big inertia doesn't help.  When you
                 don't have seatbelts, you hit the roof and break your neck
                 and die.  BTW there are usually seat belts for the bus
                 drivers.  So I think buses should have seatbelts for
                 passengers also.
                 \_ Sure sure.  There are lots of ways to get hurt and die in
                    a car.  Sometimes the seatbeltless guy who got ejected
                    lives.  Small nimble cars are more likely to completely
                    avoid accidents but less likely to survive head-on
                    collisions, yadda yadda.
              \_  They are actually quite safe.  Very
                 rigid frame, tons of airbags.  You see a lot of them in
                 Europe (use almost no gas, very roomy--a colleague has one
                 and we carpool regularly.)  Not very much storage, fairly
                 zippy, and there's a 4-door (which sucks), a roadster (which
                 is cute but being discontinued) and the crossblade (which is
                 an awesome idea-- )  I think
                 they even make some bizarre Brabus mad turbo version.  The
                 company's at least co-owned by DaimlerChrysler, and they sell
                 them here in these giant glass towers that look like 10 story
                 car vending machines.  Pretty cool, and you can wedge them
                 in perpendicularly into many gaps in parking spots.  -John
                 \_ That crossblade doesn't look safe.
                    \_ OK granted, but I don't think "safety" is entirely
                       the point with something like that.  -John
2005/8/18-20 [Transportation/Car, Transportation/Car/Hybrid] UID:39162 Activity:low
8/18    Forget about Prius.  Does the VW TDI diesel engine Jetta and
        Passat help save fuel costs?  are there drawbacks?  diesel
        seems to be about the same price as the lowest grade gasoline,
        but does it really run 30% further per gallon?
        \_ you can convert diesel engines to run on vegetable oil.  You
           need to start and end the day on diesel to clean out the engine,
           but once it heats up you switch over to a second gas tank, which
           you could possibly fill for free if you know anyone in the
           restaurant business.  ...I have no idea what level of emissions
           this produces, though.  -sax
        \_ yes, and you get almost no power as a bargin!
           \_ The Prius seems to have even less.  76 vs. 100 BHP.
           \_ HP ratings don't tell the whole story. You get lots
              of torque at low RPM.
              \_ Yup.  Typical for diesel engines.
        \_ Where are you located? Everywhere I've looked Diesel is more
           expensive than Premium these days.
           \_ chicago.  maybe california has more environment tax?
              \_ Yep.  Diesel #2 (auto diesel) is more than premium unleaded
                 in CA and has been for about a year or two.
              \_ Close.  It is more tax, but road tax, not environment tax.
        \_ Diesel has more energy per gram. I don't think it is 30% but
           it is quite a bit. Also, the combustion process for diesel is
           more efficient, extracting more of the energy and wasting less
           as exhaust and heat. -ausman
2005/8/9-11 [Transportation/Car] UID:39069 Activity:moderate
        An Ethiopian immigrant was in critical condition today ... Asmelash
        and his friends were stopped at a traffic light at Adams Boulevard and
        Crenshaw Boulevard when a dark Honda Accord pulled up alongside them
        about 12:30 a.m. ... The men in the Accord asked Asmelash and his three
        friends where they were from ... When someone in the car said,
        "Ethiopia," the driver of the Accord got out of the car, walked over
        and shot Asmelash once in the chest ... The gang members were Latino
        \_ I wonder what the Latinos thought the guy said. There's no way
           they know what/where ethiopia is.
           \_ Since all Latinos are illegals and are therefore criminals that
              rape and steal and murder (and are also dirty and uneducated).
              Thanks, freeperguy.
           \_ Obviously you don't understand how gangs work.
                \_ Clearly you do, sitting behind your computer screen
                   motd'ing all day, and then gang banging by night.
                   \_ Are you latino?  Do you understand the effect gangs had
                      on Los Angeles?
           \_ Right, since all Latinos are illegals and are therefore
              criminals that rape and steal and murder (and are also dirty
              and uneducated).
                \_ the ones that commit acts like this certainly are.
                   \_ Uhm, yeah and I know plenty of college grads from the
                      college of your choice that couldn't point to Ethiopia
                      on a map.  WTF does race or membership in a gang have
                      to do with it?
           \_ I'm guessing the Latinos didn't really care what he answered or
              where he's from.  They asked the question so that he wouldn't
              take off when they're walking over to shoot him.
           \_ I'm guessing the Latinos thought the black people weren't
              respecting them.  The correct answer is:  "Nowhere, man, nowhere"
              -long-time L.A. resident
              \_ Just out of curiosity, why is this the 'correct' answer?
                \_ well, do you have a better answer? !pp
                   \_ Yes.  It's "From your fuckin MOM's house, bitch" while
                      you reach for the Pancor Jackhammer stashed behind your
                      seat to teach the nasty little tacos some multicultural
                      tolerance by turning them into road sashimi.  -John
                   \_ Why do I need a better answer to have the PP give an
                \_ well, do you have a better answer? !op
                   \_ Why do I need a better answer to get have the PP give an
                      explanation?  I'm genuinely curious (hence the opening
                      phrase 'Just out of curiousity').
                        \_ oops. first, I mean !pp (not !op). next, I wasn't
                          being confrontational or belligerent, but rather
                          just smart ass. I was just trying to imply that
                          the "best" answer is the non-answer (i.e.
                          "nowhere, man, nowhere"), the one that ends
                          the conversation asap.
                          \_ Yah -- I was just curious what 'nowhere' scans
                             as in the minds of gang members.  I'm assuming
                             that it's basically saying that you're not from
                             a neighborhood and hence have no gang affiliation
                             (so you have nothing to declare, etc).
                    But yeah, the real answer is to run/drive away as fast as
                    possible, and ideally, to not be in a situation where
                    you're even asked that question.  While you are running
                    away, you can say, "I'm from nowhere, man!"
                    \_ Heh -- thanks for the links!
2005/8/4-6 [Transportation/Car] UID:38983 Activity:nil
8/4     berkeley bowl - - danh
        \_ Me and my wife drive the 40 miles from Livermore to Berkeley
           bowl ever couple of weeks, just for that produce section.  The
           wierd part is, not only is the produce great, but it's so cheap
           that the savings out wiegh the gas costs. (We eat a lot of
           produce though) -jrleek
           \_ Driving 80 miles roundtrip to purchase organic food doesn't
              exactly help the environment, if that's what you're trying to do.
              \_ Did I say anything about the environment?  Or orgaic food
                 for that matter? -jrleek
                 \_ No you didn't.
        \_ do you park here?: - danh
        \_ do you park here?

           \_ I wonder what they'd do if you went away and returned with bolt
              cutters to remove the boot.
                      \- as somebody who has de-booted a car at midnight, it is a
                         pretty serious pain in the ass. you are likely to do some
                         damage to your equipment, although maybe not $30 worth,
                         ad relatively few people have the right tools.
                         \_ There was an article in the Bay Guardian many years
                            ago about easy ways to remove a boot.  Maybe if you
                            ask them nicely, they'll find it for you.  -John
              \_ Arrest you for destruction of property.
2005/7/28-29 [Transportation/Car] UID:38866 Activity:nil
7/28    General Lee (the car): will it have the Confederate Flag?
        \_ of course
           \_ no PC?  Wow!
              \_ What else would it have? It's called the General Lee.
                 The horn plays Dixie. Yee-haw!
        \_ Is somebody making a new General Lee car model?
           \_ New Dukes of Hazzard Movie?
2005/7/26-29 [Transportation/Car, Transportation/Car/RoadHogs] UID:38830 Activity:high
7/26    To the free market troll complaining about how the government shouldn't
        fund an R&D project into better roads.  Have you any idea how many
        commercial(read: free market) companies owe their technology to basic
        science funded by the government?  Hell. If not for that, you wouldn't
        even have a career.
        \_ I am probably the guy you think is the free market troll.  You
           didn't read my posts carefully enough.  I totally support government
           funding of R&D of all kinds, government funding of roads, and
           government funding of public mass transit.  I just loathe car
           culture, and think that our present system is not based on either
           a free market or government support of rational transit, but rather
           is based on whoring out the country for the car companies and
           suburban developers.  You may address me as "anti-car troll" if
           you want to be accurate.
           \_ "whoring out the country for the car companies..."?  Did you
              just graduate from highschool?   That's the sort of
              demagoguery I'd expect from a freshman or sophomore with all the
              accompanying idealisitic 'Im gonna change the *world*!!!!'
              demagoguery I'd expect from a freshman or sophomore will all the
              accompanying idealisitic 'Im-a gonna change the *world*!!!!'
                \_ I'm not lafe but I just want to say that when I was in
                   college I was full of optimism and energy because I
                   felt that I could do a lot to make this world better.
                   Now that I'm in my 30s, working 9-5... I feel that
                   there isn't much I can really do to drastically
                   change the world. You just live life the way life
                   wants you to live. Does anyone feel similar?
                   \_ Not at all; I'm not a victim. -pp
                   \_ No.  Try to be a good guy, debate eloquently, stand by
                      your convictions.  What's so hard about that?  Make what
                      little difference you can, and enjoy watching the morons
                      around you send the world to hell in a handbasket.  And
                      regarding the comment below, Europe has good public
                      transit, but the cities are also generally a lot more
                      densely populated.  -John
                   \_ I do try to live my life modestly and reasonably, but
                      I've concluded that the world doesn't want to be made
                      better. See GC's comments on "Paradox of Our Time"
           \_ So, your alternative to car culture...?
                \_ See Europe.  Walkable/bikable cities, subsidized mass
                   transit.  High gas taxes to discourage use of the
                   automobile.  Discourage sprawl.
                   \_ Europe's big cities are very densely populated. The
                      rest of Europe uses cars just like here.
                      \_ Even smaller European cities have very usable
                         public transportation (better than, say, SF/Oak).
                         And even less densly populated regions are well
                         served by public transport. I was able to get
                         from the door of my apartment to standing on a
                         glacier (in another country no less!) solely
                         though public transport (well, and some walking).
                         \_ So you suggest a *massive* rebuilding of our
                            entire culture where we literally rip up everything
                            now in place, and rebuild everyone's home, work,
                            the transit system, utilities, everything, so you
                            don't have to live in car culture?  Seriously, I've
                            never said this to anyone before but if you're that
                            upset you should just move to another country that
                            suits you better.  Living here will just keep you
                            bitter and angry.  Note, I don't say 'make'.  You
                            are already bitter and angry to a ridiculous degree
                            over something that will *never* be anything like
                            the way you want.
                            \_ Ok, take a couple of deep breaths and re-read
                               my post. You will see that I do not suggest
                               anything; I just offered a counter statement
                               and supporting anecdote to the post before
                               me. Physician, heal thyself. -- pp
                               \_ Ok, so you advocate nothing when the original
                                  point of this sub-thread was "What is your
                                  alternative to car culture?".  To say that
                                  you advocate nothing when you're really
                                  advocating European style transit which would
                                  require a massive and near complete
                                  rebuilding of society is pure intellectual
                                  dishonesty.  To then turn around and say the
                                  fault is mine and that you're this calm and
                                  together person while I'm some nut case is
                                  pure dishonesty.  Care to actually discuss
                                  the issue instead of nutting around?
                                  \_ I predict that within 10 years gasoline
                                     will be $10/gallon and the rebulding of
                                     America into a denser and more sustainable
                                     fashion will begin happening all on its
                                     own. And yes, you are the one that sounds
                                     angry and bitter and extreme here. !-pp
                                     \_ It isn't possible to be angry/bitter
                                        about something I don't care about.
                                        Questioning someone who questions the
                                        status quo is hardly extreme.  Now
                                        you're just being silly.  Re-read and
                                        try again.  I predict that whatever
                                        happens, if you predict enough random
                                        things you'll eventually be right
                                        about some of them.
                                        \_ Are you familiar with the Peak Oil
                                           hypothesis? I am not predicting a
                                           "random" thing, I am subscribing
                                           to a theory that already has quite
                                           a bit of evidence to back it up.
                                           \_ I've read a lot on both sides of
                                              the peak oil hypothesis.  I'm
                                              still undecided.  Thinking about
                                              it now, no, I don't think oil
                                              will ever get to $10/gallon in
                                              today's currency because there
                                              are other energy sources that
                                              cost less than that, but more
                                              than the current price.  Oil
                                              can exceed those numbers due to
                                              current inertial reliance, but
                                              not to infinity and I don't
                                              believe to $10/g.  I still
                                              remember all the scare movies
                                              in the 70s telling us how by
                                              the mid 80s the world would be
                                              completely out of oil.  I'm not
                                              easily convinced that state of
                                              affairs is always ~10 years away.
                                              \_ A while ago I saw a seaman's
                                                 handbook written in the 70's
                                                 that quite sincerely stated
                                                 that sail might well be comming
                                                 back in the near future so
                                                 merchant seamen should learn
                                                 sailing related skills.
                                              \_ So I did some research and
                                                 I agree that because of coal
                                                 to gasoline processes, gas
                                                 will probably not hit $10
                                                 anytime soon. I think $5 is
                                                 very likely though.
                         \_ I wouldn't say that smaller cities have better
                            public transport than SF does. There is, for
                            instance, no subway. You might be able to get
                            on a bus, but you can do that here, too, if
                            you don't mind a 3 hour trip to go 20 miles.
                            My point was that Europe, outside of the dense
                            cities, is also a car culture. Try driving
                            from Paris to the Mediterranean during the
                            summer. The roads are packed. Mostly the old and
                            the poor use public transport, just like here,
                            unless they live in a big city (like our NYC).
                            Plenty of Europeans own cars and use them to,
                            say, go to Wal-Mart.
                            \_ Yeah, traffic here is horrible, as bad as
                               LA -- I don't deny that (though the highways
                               are also much narrower). But at the same time,
                               of the 12 people I work with closely, every
                               single one takes public transportation to work.
                               of the 12 people I work with closely, not a
                               single one drives to work.
                               I live in a town that isn't that much larger
                               than Des Moines and it has functioning public
                               transportation. You are right, there is no
                               subway here, but there are trams. However,
                               to go 20 mi, I wouldn't use either -- I'd
                               take a train and, if well timed, it should take
                               about 40 minutes door-to-door with public
                               transportation (less if I biked to the train
                               station, which I probably would). It is un-
                               realistic to expect the US to become this way
                               overnight, and there are some inherent
                               differences between Europe and the US that
                               may make it hard to implement such a system,
                               but the difference isn't just an "economy-
                               of-scale" effect from large cities -- many
                               smaller European cities have well functioning
                               public transportation.
                            \_ When I was on vacation, I took trains everywhere.
                               The train from Nice to Paris took about seven
                               hours. I could have done it in a bullet train
                               in about four, but I wanted to do it overnight
                               and get a sleeper. The people I shared my
                               cabin with certainly were not poor.
                               \_ Trains will get you to a city, but are
                                  not helpful to get you to a particular
                                  destination. I can fly from LA to SF
                                  for cheap, so I guess flying is better
                                  than public transportation. Why would
                                  someone take a train to Nice if they
                                  could fly?
                                  \_ Easy -- it takes an hour to get from
                                     your house to the airport, where you
                                     need to arrive an hour in advance.
                                     The flight takes an hour, and it
                                     takes another hour to get from the
                                     airport to the city center. So, even
                                     though the flight is only 1 hr, you
                                     are in transit for 4 hours. When
                                     factoring in the time it takes to get
                                     to the train station, it probably
                                     takes a little bit longer, but the
                                     experience is much more pleasant.
                                     \_ The solution is obviously to build
                                        more airports so that it won't
                                        take 2 hours there/back.
                                        \_ Or more train stations with
                                           bullet trains.
                                  \_ You can take a cab or local transit
                                     or even rent a car once you get there.
                                     Flying is a sort of mass transit, actually.
                                     How is it fundamentally different than
                   \_ Same as in Hong Kong and around the Tokyo area.  Many
                      people have nice cars, but they don't drive them
                      \_ In Tokyo, you don't have to. In NYC, you don't
                         have to. It's unreasonable to expect the same
                         level of public transit in, say, Des Moines.
                         \_ I've never been to Tokyo, but the idea that you can
                            get around NYC with just public transit is simply
                            wrong.  Even if you want to think that Manhattan =
                            NYC, this still isn't so and the incredible number
                            of cabs and other private driving services should
                            make this clear.  If public transit was so great
                            and workable in NYC, there wouldn't be so many
                            cabbies.  A cab is *waaaay* more expensive than
                            public transit, btw.
                            \_ There are tons of cabbies in Tokyo, and
                               Seoul as well.  Seoul has great public
                               transit, but that doesn't mean you don't
                               sometimes need a car, and therefore a cab.
                               There are even some cases where a cab is
                               cheaper than public transit.  Quite a few
                               in fact. -jrleek
                               \_ Absolutely. I don't think many people are
                                  arguing for getting rid of all cars. Taking
                                  public transit for an IKEA shopping trip
                                  is probably impractical, and there are
                                  plenty of remote regions that don't need
                                  to be served by public transit. The aim
                                  of car alternatives should not be to
                                  replace cars in all situations, just
                                  common ones (people don't go on IKEA
                                  shopping sprees every day, people do
                                  go to work every day).
                                  \_ in other countries ikea provides
                                     very good delivery service for
                                     big items.  for small items, just
                                     call a cab.  still don't need car.
                             \_ I have been to NYC dozens of times and have
                                never taken a cab. The transit system does
                                everything I have ever wanted it to do in
                                NYC. Have you ever even been there before?
                                \_ yes, i was born and raised there.  how many
                                   times did you visit our fine city?
                                   \_ dozens. I don't know the exact number.
        \_ Someone needs to ilyas this post.
           \_ To verbify is the American way... urr, I mean it's to
        \_ I think that guy didn't have a problem with government funding R&D
           projects in general.  He only had a problem with funding R&D
           projects into better roads.

an way... urr, I mean it's to
        \_ I think that guy didn't have a problem with government funding R&D
           projects in general.  He only had a problem with funding R&D
           projects into better roads.
2005/7/25-27 [Politics/Foreign/Canada, Transportation/Car] UID:38800 Activity:nil
7/25    Krugman says new Toyota plant dumping US for Canada becuase US
        workers quality sucks and US doesn't have universal medical coverage
        which means Toyota has to pay through its nose for that.
        \_ Old news. I think this was on the motd 2 months ago.
           \_ which part is old news?  Krugman saying the Canadian health
              care system pays much less in administrative overhead per
              person than the U.S. does while providing universal health
              coverage, or Toyota selecting Ontario to build its new factory?
              \_ Toyota selecting Ontario for its new factory b/c US
                 worker quality sucks. The original Toytoa statement
                 re the choice of Ontario did not say that the reason
                 was realted to universal medical coverage.
                 \_ nono ... cost savings provided by government-financed
                    universal medical coverage at a signifcantly more
                    efficient level
              \_ Why do so many Canadians come to the US for health care?
2005/7/23-26 [Transportation/Car] UID:38791 Activity:moderate
7/23    I'm spending my first vacation in LA and I've already spent 1/2 of
        my time in traffic. WHAT IS WRONG WITH THE 405 AND SANTA MONICA?
        The whole place is a parking lot. I can't even go above 10MPH
        and I need to queue 20 mins on the surface before I can even get onto
        the fucking freeway. Fucking vacation this is turning out.
        \_ The 405 is for going through LA on the way to somewhere else.
           I spent a weekend in LA 4th of July weekend and spent almost no
           time in traffic, seeing all the neighborhoods around Santa
           Monica.  Use street traffic.
        \_ That's what you get for coming to LA, sorry. Living here, I don't
           like it any more than you do.
        \_ Use to see when stuff is free.  Don't drive on the
           405 or 10 in general unles syou know what you're doing.  Otherwise
           you can take Olympic everywhere.
           \_ I HATE that section of the 405 between the 10 and 101.  It's
              pretty much never good except late at night.
              \_ It's pretty good in the morning going from the 10 to the
                 101. I used to take that stretch from UCLA to Granada
                 Hills area every morning and traffic was great. Going
                 towards the 10 sucked, though.
        \_ Where are you trying to get to/from? As previous person noted,
           stay off the freeways unless you have to be on them.
           \_ Getty, Long Beach, Monterey Park, etc. I go wherever my GPS
              tells me to go, and I can tell you that my $1200 GPS upgrade
              doesn't tell me how to avoid traffic. I've spent 1/3 of my
              life in my car, and when I get out, it is hot and humid.
              I don't know WHY you guys live in LA, but I know I'm never
              gonna move here. I feel sorry for you bozos in LA.
              \_ Remember that when you vote on a transit bond after
                 you come home.
              \_ Try the Huntington Library if you have time.  It's
                 really nice.  The place is a really cool botanic
                 garden with some buildings housing rare books,
                 including a Gutenburg bible (first printed book,
                 at least in the west).
              \_ It has been humid, but that is not typical. FWIW, I
                 really like LA. I've said this before, but LA is a
                 terrible place to visit and a nice place to live. In many
                 ways I find the Bay Area the opposite (nice place to
                 visit and crummy place to live) although I do like the
                 Bay Area.
        \_ As someone who lives down here now, some words of advice:
           1) You're on vacation, not at work.   You can afford to avoid
              traffic hour.  If you vacationed in San Francisco, would you
              fight with 880-S traffic going to San Jose in the morning?
              \_ When is traffic light in LA?
           2) In that same vein, take a look at poster).
              It's utterly invaluable for avoiding traffic.  Even better,
              if you have a treo or some mobile www browser, they have
              non-map based freeway speed lists by specific freeway.
           3) Learn to read a map.  Buy a thomas guide.  It's easy. Local
              roads are actually nice to take.  You get a sense of local
              businesses and culture.  Again, if you have to take the
              freeway, avoid traffic hourse, use sigalert, consider alt.
              routes (eg. 405-S or 110-S to Long Beach, 60-E or 10-E to
              Monterey Park).
           4) If you're going to MP, don't forget San Gabriel.
2005/7/22-25 [Transportation/Car, Transportation/Car/Hybrid] UID:38769 Activity:nil
7/22    Eco Friendly Bling-Bling Rides:
2005/7/20 [Transportation/Car] UID:38722 Activity:nil
7/20    Does anyone know if it is possible to go to a shady dealer to
        add freon to a really old car? I don't want to pay a lot of money
        to convert my old AC to the new one that uses 0 freon. Thanks.
        \_ Yes, but it'll leak out within a couple of years.  R134a (non-freon)
           systems are much higher pressure than the old R12 systems.
        \_ And while you're at it, can you find me someone to buy crack from?
           Oh yeah, and I'd like a hitman to kill my annoying wife.  Please
           leave your name, email address, home address, and phone number
           with all responses!  thx!
           \_ Sir, I need to confirm your address...
        \_ The best way I know is to buy an old car or parts of a wrecked
           car. That's what I did. Someone sold me a junk car for $50 and
           I was able to get the freon out of it. I then sold the junk car
           for $50. Auto body shops do this a lot (salvage freon from
           totalled cars).
2005/7/17-19 [Transportation/Car] UID:38666 Activity:low
7/16    When I rent a car, does my existing insurance (AAA) cover collision
        and liability, and if so, how much is it usually? I've also heard
        that some credit card used for the rental may also have some coverage
        as well. Does anyone know? Thanks.
        \_ pretty much any platinum visa/mastercard includes coverage.
        \_ Your current liability and collision covers rentals, unless
           you leave the country or break the law or do something really
           strange, like use the car for hire. You still have to pay
           your normal deductible, but if you use a platinum or gold
           card, even that is usually covered.
           you leave the country or break the rental agreement. You still
           have to pay your normal deductible, but if you use a platinum or
           gold card, even that is usually covered.
           \_ Speaking of gold and platinum, what is the credit limit for them?
              Someone told me gold is +$5000, platinum is +$7500, etc etc.
              I've also heard from someone that they have titanium cards too.
              I wonder what the limit for that is           -credit card hater
              \_ Usually your car insurance will cover liability, but
                 *not* collision. Liability covers the driver (you) no
                 matter what you drive, but collision covers a specific
                 vehicle. As for credit card limits, there are no hard rules.
                 The Amex Centurion (black card) is the most prestigious
                 card in the world, giving perks like free upgrades to
                 first class when flying. It is by invitation only.
                 \_ Shrug.  Upgrades with CO, DL, and NW: nice.  Hotel
                    privileges: moderately nice, and sometimes random upgrades
                    at unaffiliated hotels are cool.  Other services (travel
                    agent, concierge, world cell, etc.): fairly useless,
                    though good for urban legend fodder.  Pissing off my MIL:
                 \_ You are wrong. I don't know why people on the motd always
                    claim to be experts on things they are wrong about:
                    Your collision insurance follows you to a car you borrow
                    or rent.
        \_ The one time I forgot to check the rejecting CDW/LDW box when
           renting a car, I had my rental car keys stolen at gunpoint, and
           the rental company replaced everything.
2005/7/14-15 [Transportation/Car, Science/GlobalWarming] UID:38613 Activity:low
7/14    Cost Guard building a bio-diesel boat:
        \_ Something's wrong, the whole point of biodiesel is that it
           works as a replacement for petroleum diesel without any
           modifications.  This seems like PR spin.
           \_ Isn't biodiesel a lot cruddier?
              \_ I believe it has a little bit less energy per unit volume,
                 but has better lubricating properties.
                 \_ ObYermom
2005/7/13-15 [Transportation/Car] UID:38607 Activity:low
7/13    Top ten movie car chases:
        \_ Fuck all car chases, and fuck all cars.  A car chase can ruin a whole
           movie.  I had to walk out of Ronin because of its endless car chase.
           What the fuck is the matter with people that they like watching
           people drive around?  If you want to watch people drive around,
           you can do that anytime, anywhere.  Why not list the all time
           best movie scenes where someone takes a shit in real time?
           \_ Don't forget the guns.  -John
              \_ What about the guns?
                 \_ Any self-respecting car chase needs serious guns.
        \_ There've been versions of this list before.  Anything without
           The French Connection is bunkum.  Where Eagles Dare gets
           honorable mention.  -John
        \_ Of course, The Bourne Supremacy chase would have been better if the
           cinematography hadn't been in handheld-vomit-inducing-cam.
2005/7/12 [Transportation/Car] UID:38564 Activity:low
7/12    Was there a reason why I-280 turned into a giant parking lot this
        morning or did people just decide to be extra stupid today?
        \_ don't stomp on other people's posts
           \- it is the Governator's Learn to Drive Day
        \_ I880 northbound near Union City / Hayward was more packed this
           morning than usual too.
           \_ Blame the lookylous at southbound I880. I knew it was bad when
              I had to make room for two fire engines to pass by.
2005/7/11-12 [Transportation/Car, Transportation/Car/RoadHogs] UID:38516 Activity:low
7/10    A fast car is nice, but a fast road is even better. How's the
        traffic in Europe (Switzerland and Germany), compared to average
        Bay Area traffic? For example, what is the highway speed limit in
        small towns, suburbs, urban, etc.
        \_ Way more fixed speed cameras and speed checks, way longer traffic
           jams, generally not as horrible rush hour on a daily basis, speed
           limits off highways usually a bit higher, fines worse.  -John
           limits off highways usually a bit higher, fines worse, people drive
           in a more consistently and orderly fashion (no passing on right,
           fewer idiots in SUVs yakking on cell phones.)  -John
           \_ I ENVY YOU. No, I hate America. No, I hate you.
           \_ Why does Fräulein John hate America?
           \_ What do you think the US should do to make its transportation
              system better? I hate our system but I don't want to move to
              \_ You do realize there are entire university departments devoted
                 to this question, right?  I honestly dunno.  Maybe higher gas
                 prices & better public transit is a start; drive fewer
                 automatics so there are less brake lights, so fewer traffic
                 jams, make driving tests harder, make living in city centers
                 more attractive, I really dunno.  If you've ever been in a
                 25km German traffic jam on $4 gasoline, you might think there
                 are good sides to everything... -John
                 \_ I would love to raise the max tax to 50% and raise
                    gasoline price to $3 a gallon to fund super metropolis
                    with superior mass transit system but our fucking
                    Country music listening Red Necks that prefer suburbian
                    lifestyle (so that they can fuck their cousins and
                    nephews and nieces) will not let that happen.
                    \_ This is a parody, right?  Is this jblack?
                    \_ They can't fuck their cousins and nephews and nieces in
                       super metropolis?
2005/6/28-30 [Transportation/Car] UID:38336 Activity:low
6/29    Do you pay for parking where you work?
        I assume large companies (Intel, govt, etc.) cover this.
        Our 30-person company is moving into a suite in a class A building
        (high-rise), and we're being asked to pay 20%, which comes out to
        ~ $15/month.  Just trying to figure out whether it's weird or not.
        We also pay 20% for health insurance.
        \_ When I was at Intel (1997-2000), the parking structures were
           constructed by Intel.  We had to have ID to park, but there was no
           fee for doing so.  You got premium spots if you car-pooled.  And
           everyone in the company got VTA passes so we could ride the bus
           free (which I did for most of my time there). -emarkp
        \_ It is not unusual to have to pay for parking in areas where
           parking is difficult to find (e.g. downtown LA). Some employers
           subsidize the cost, like yours is. This is typical.
           \_ Most employers also subsidize the cost of your desk and computer,
              in addition to electricity for power-hungry servers and AC.
              This is typical.
        \_ I work for the US District Court. They do not pay for or provide
           parking. --erikred
        \_ Employees at Century City need to pay $200/month and it's normal.
           Varies by cities.
           \_ So you know for a fact that it's normal for Century City workers
              to pay $200/month (non-subsidized) in parking?
        \_ I work at Levi's Plaza in San Francisco and my employer (200
           employees) does not pay for parking, which is $200/mo. They
           do provide a $45 subsidy towards a Fast Pass if you live in
           SF, or $90 if you live elsewhere.
           SF, or $90 if you live elsewhere. I know for a fact that
           companies in downtown San Francisco rarely or ever offer
           free parking to their employees. -ausman
        \_ I don't pay for parking.  I also currently work in bum-fucking
           nowhere (Google earth features only recognizable at ~2km up.) -John
2005/6/28-30 [Transportation/Car] UID:38332 Activity:low
6/29    Seeking a comparison of gasoline quality by brand. I've heard that
        Chevron is good and Citgo is bad but I was wondering if there is
        anything solid. I STFW and didnt turn up anything so far.
        \_ I get better milage on unocal and chevron, then shell.  Arco
           destroyed my last car (i think)
           \_ I usually stick to Chevron and Shell when I'm not near a Costco.
              I think the Shell station on the east side of 880 off
              Hegenberger killed my last car(which was getting old.) I had no
              problem with the Shell station on the west side of 880 off
              Hegenberger.  I also had a friend whose old car will not run
              smoothly on any gas other than Shell.  As for Costco, I've
              been told that they take bids from different companies and buy
              the cheapest, but that they don't take bids from certain
              companies with low quality gas.
        \_ AAA repeatedly says "they're all the same, buy the cheapest".  On
           the other hand, I filled up at a "COAST Gasoline" or some such one
           time and got 225 miles out of the tank instead of my usual 300
           (same exact route, driving habits, etc).  YMMV (literally)
           \_ Water in gas?
           \_ I verbally heard the same thing from others.  Is there an URL for
              the AAA reference please?  Thanks.
           \_ That doesn't really make sense. The only difference should
              be like if one has dirt in the gas or doesn't have the fancy
              detergent additives in there like "V-Power" or "Techron". It's
              possible some shady station puts alcohol or whatever in there
              but that would be illegal. Or maybe their pump was fraudulent.
              \_ Hey, you don't have to tell me.  I'm just saying what happened.
                 The needle was past "F" where it usually is after a full
                 fillup.  -op
                 \_ maybe someone siphoned it out. heh.
                    \_ You know you're a redneck when siphoning gas is a
                       family activity.  I used to work with a guy like
                       \_ Stop insulting Bush voters, that is not very nice.
        \_ There was an article in some newspaper (from milwaukee, i think)
           about the difference in gas between various companies. The
           conclusion was that all gas pretty much comes from the same
           refineries and such, and the difference is just proprietary
           additives, for which it is supposedly not clear whether they
           really have any kind of significant benefit.
           \_ That doesn't really make any sense. The only difference should
              be like if one has dirt in the gas or doesn't have the fancy
              detergent additives in there like "V-Power" or "Techron". It's
              possible some shady station puts alcohol or whatever in there
              but that would be illegal. Or maybe their pump was fraudulent.
           \_ I agree, but I still shop at name brand gas stations based
              on the quality of the pump stations, no fee for credit card
              transactions, more working machines/ pumps, availability of
              receipts, etc.  The overall experience is different at a
              ghetto station.  Kinda like shopping at Target or Kmart, it's
              worth the extra $1 or $2 for me to avoid the inconveniences.
2005/6/27-28 [Transportation/Car] UID:38325 Activity:nil
6/27    Where does get its traffic speed information?
        \_ probably sigalert
        \_ Traffic data is big bucks.  There are lots of companies that sell
           that. however probably gets it right from the governmental
           source rather than having to buy it from a reseller.
        \_ Your FasTrack transponder. CalTrans installed sensors on some exits
           or overhead passes and calculates checkpoints. (e.g. transponder A
           hits first checkpoint on University Ave exit on I-80W at 9:16:05,
           and it hits second checkpoint on Ashby Ave at 9:20:03, therefore
           speed is distance between exits divide by # of elapsed time). I
           remember some privacy-nazi complained that CalTrans collect such
           data from their FasTrack. Grow up!
           \_ is the above true?  Could you point me to an article on
              the web about the technical details? - danh
2005/6/23-25 [Reference/Law/Court, Transportation/Car] UID:38272 Activity:nil
6/23    Thought you won 100 grand but got a Nestle 100 Grand Bar instead?
        I wonder if she is related to the women who filed the Toyota
        Toy Yoda lawsuit:
        \_ So who is right in the eye of the court? The radio station that
           deceived the woman, or the woman too stupid and gullible?
2005/6/20-22 [Reference/BayArea, Transportation/Car] UID:38212 Activity:low
6/20    My friend's having a wedding in Seattle. Hotels there are about
        $30-40 more than other places like Renton, which is 12 miles
        aways. Since I'm renting a car, I don't think 12 miles will
        really matter. However, is there anything I'm really missing
        by not living closer to Seattle, Kirkland, Lynwood, and Shoreline?
        \_ Bellevue's usually fairly reasonably priced.  Try the Days Inn.
        \_ Are you a student or unemployed? Think staying in Berkeley instead
           of SF, or Oakland instead of Berkeley. You can definitely do it,
           but there's something to be said of being "in the city", whether
           the city in question is SF, Berkeley, or Seattle.
           \_ I'm both, the most pathetic kind :( -op
              \- I think with weddings there is often milage to be had
                 by staying where other people are staying. If there is
                 no central location or you are going to be haning out
                 with other people, i suppose that may be another matter.
           \_ or  This one contains possible
              pricing for (in case you don't want to do the
              usual priceline bidding).
2005/6/15-17 [Transportation/Car] UID:38144 Activity:low
6/15    Would you drive 8 miles street traffic (lots of stop lights)
        or 18 miles on the freeway?
        \_ What's the traffic like?  If the freeway is stop and go, then
           I'd take the surface street unless it was a parking lot.
           Otherwise, I'd probably favor the freeway.
           \- is this in Fleemont?
              \_ Uhm, I dunno.  Maybe should ask the OP.   -!op
              \_ not fremont.
        \_ Drove 8 miles on freeway instead of 4 miles on streets; mpg
           was much better, paradoxically....
           \_ paradoxically?  how are there so many profoundly uninformed
              people on soda?
              \_ Yes, take williamc and emarkp for example.
                 \_ Don't lump me in with williamc.  I've got RSI from keyboard
                    use. -emarkp
2005/6/13-15 [Transportation/Car] UID:38117 Activity:nil
6/13    I'm flying to Vancouver for my friend's wedding. I've already booked
        the flight and rented a car for a whole week. The wedding is only
        two days and I plan to use the remaining time to drive to Seattle and
        also visit Victoria, BC. What are your suggestions on hotel
        accomodations and the method of transportation to/from Victoria? I
        might take the ferry service that transports your car for only
        $38.00 one way, but is it even necessary to have a car in Victoria?
        Also, is it worth staying a night or two in Victoria, or should
        I do that in one day, and spend the remaining amount of time in
        Seattle and Vancouver?
        \_ The island is not so tiny that you can walk everywhere (depending
           on where you take the ferry from, it may drop you off in Sidney
           rather than in downtown Victoria, which is about a 15 minute
           drive away) and I usually don't like dealing with public
           transportation while on vacation. Driving around on the coast
           is nice and scenic so that's another reason I would recommend
           transportation while on vacation. Driving around the coast of the
           island is pretty scenic so that's another reason I would recommend
           a car. As for how long to spend there, it really depends on your
           preferences. If you like scenery / relaxation I would spend more
           time there (or if you're travelling with a lady friend - chicks
           dig Victoria) but if you're more of a nightlife / culture person
           maybe opt for more time in the bigger cities. If you decide to
           stay overnight and like B&B's check out
           \- While I wouldnt go there to see the Butchart Gardens, if I was
              there, I'd stop by. I agree what to do there sort of depends
              if you are solo, with the guys or with a chick. It would be
              weird to go to high tea at the Empress Hotel as a lark with
              the guys. I thought Victoria was a touristy ... there is
              the guys. I thought Victoria was a touristy ... like there was
              a Fisherman's Wharf factor. BTW, you know Vancouver Island is
              like +300mi long, right ... I'm not sure "not so tiny that you
              can walk" fully captures how big it is. I thought the boat trip
              there was also pretty cool. If you are an outdoor person, I'd
              head north or north east instead of Victoria.
           maybe opt for more time in the bigger cities. btw, if you're
           driving up the coast, Portland is a pretty cool city too.
2005/6/13-15 [Transportation/Car] UID:38100 Activity:nil
        "A study released in 1999 by the Insurance Institute for Highway
        Safety estimated an increase in deaths on interstates and freeways of
        about 15 percent in the 24 states that had raised their speed limit in
        late 1995 and 1996."
        \_ And what happened to the rate on the other states that didn't raise
           speed limit?  And what was the increase in number of cars in those
           states?  Stats Shmats.
2005/6/11-13 [Transportation/Car, Transportation/Car/RoadHogs] UID:38085 Activity:low
6/10    Who says the French can't make great cars?
        (Transforming, Dancing Citroen)
        \_ Aside from this one (laser guns and transforming robot capability
           are optional equipment) they make excellent cars, well on par with
           anything you can get from a Jap or US mfgr--except for sports cars,
           trucks or big sedans.  -John
        \_ That's Gaullish genius all right.
           \_ Gaulish.  Gaullish would have been state-funded, really big,
              shiny, fast and super duper expensive.  That said, aside from
              sports cars, pickups/SUVs and large Cadillac-style limousines,
              French cars are as solid as anything on the market.  -John
        \_ Why does some fuckwit keep nuking my comment about French cars
           actually being pretty good?  Got riceboy issues?  -John
           \_ Cheese Eating Surrender Monkeys!
           \_ No, it's freedom fries issues.
2005/6/10-12 [Transportation/Car, Recreation/Stripclub] UID:38070 Activity:low
6/10    it looks like Los Alamos man made it all up to cover
        running over someone in the parking lot of a strip club - danh
        \_ Well, you know, I was really wondering why whistleblowers would
           decide to meet in a STRIP club.  Really sounds like something
           you'd say to throw your wife off.
        \_ ok, wow, that makes more sense now
           I guess I've been seen The Insider too many times
           I guess I've seen The Insider too many times
        \_ Where is the Freeper link to this? I won't believe it until
           I read it in the Free Republic.
2005/6/7-8 [Transportation/Car] UID:38002 Activity:low
6/7     5th subway car is the man-boy love car!  -John
        \_ - danh
        \_ "the Greater New York Association of Single Parents dubbed the
           fifth car of each train the "single parents car" on Monday,
           seemingly unaware that the North American Man-Boy Love
           Association had already identified the fifth car of every train
           as the "man-boy love" car."
        \_ It's also "parents without partners" Car!: "It was awful," said
           one single mother who asked not to be identified as she got off
           the A train at 14th Street. "My 12-year-old son and I boarded the
           fifth car of the train hoping to meet a suitable male role
           model. Instead, I found myself using my pepper spray to fend off
           four overweight middle-aged men in leather pants who assumed I
           was Jeffrey's pimp." [ reformatted - formatd ]
2005/6/6-7 [Transportation/Car] UID:37982 Activity:nil
6/6     I just read an old-ish Economist article about how a lot of US gas
        is actually E10 or E20--10-20% ethanol "gasohol".  I noticed that,
        while our (European) gas is usually 95-100 octane, US gas seems to
        be 87-93ish.  I don't think we get so much ethanol additive here--is
        the lower US octane count related to ethanol content of gas?  (I'm not
        very knowledgeable about this sort of chemistry, so this may be a
        stupid question.)  -John
        \_ How much are you paying for gas in Europe? And why do you say "we"?
           Aren't you as much an American as everyone else on motd is?
           \_ perhaps he meant "We, people in Europe,".  Why are people so
              damn touchy about the word "we"?  Sometimes it is just meant
              as a factual group-identification, not as some divisive
              statement of politics/ethnicity/whatever.  Jeesh. -phuqm
           \_ "We" as in I'm a dual citizen, relax.  And I always thought
              Cal students were a pretty mixed bag, citizenship-wise.  "We"
              (.ch) have some of the cheapest gas in Europe--ca. 1.50 CHF per
              liter, do the math.  UK is probably most expensive, at about
              twice that (ca. 1 GBP/liter, last I checked.)  -John
              \_ What's "ca."?
                 \_ Seriously?  Wow.  Who's teaching these kids.  It's
                    an abbreviation for "circa" meaning "about, around,
                    approximately".  Seriously, this is like asking "what
                    does & stand for?"...
                    \_ What does &...
2005/6/3-5 [Reference/BayArea, Transportation/Car] UID:37968 Activity:low
6/3     Going to Mendocino tomorrow. Recommendations on roads to take and
        traffic tips? I'm thinking of biiting the bullet and just taking
        1 all the way up. Leaving from Oakland. Is there ever a good time to
        try to cut through SF/GG Bridge? TIA. --erikred
        \_ Why not the san rafael bridge and up 101->128->1?  It'd be a lot
           faster, and still very pretty.
           \_ I grew up in Mendocino.  I highly recommend the 101->128->1
              route.  Highway 1 all the way up is not worth the length of
              the drive or the near death experiences involving Winnebagos.
        \_ Is tomorrow a holiday or is there something going on in Mendocino
           that would alter normal traffic patterns?  I don't normally find
           midday traffic to/from SF to be bad.  If you want to get to the GG
           bridge from the East Bay, may I recommend the Fell roll?
           Basically, grab 80 across the Bay Bridge, exit Civic Center.  Take
           a right on 9th St, change to the leftmost lane.  This drops you
           onto Hayes once you cross Market, stay in the left lane, turn left
           on Gough, right on Fell immediately thereafter.  The lights on Fell
           are timed, and this will take you all the way down to GG Park.
           Follow Fell past the panhandle and it cuves and drops you on to
           Lincoln.  Take Lincoln to 19th Ave, and turn right.  19th Ave turns
           into Park Presidio, which drops you on to the GG bridge. -dans
           \- if you are leaving from oakland, take richmond bridge ...
              clearly. i also think franklin to lombard is viable if you are
              going through SF for some reason. traffic at fell & jfk can get
              weird on weekends. and with no exit directly on to fell this
              is not that ideal any more. fulton on northside of park can
              also be faster than lincoln. [the advice above has 3 bits of
              backtracking: go south from hayes to fell, go south again
              to lincoln, go out to 19th to cross park on south when fulton
              will get you to park presideo around 14th]. --SF Route Optimizer
              \_ I agree that Franklin to Lombard is viable, but Lombard is
                 a total clusterfuck at all times both wrt bad timing of
                 lights and quantity of traffic.  The ``backtracking'' from
                 Hayes to Fell is literally one block.  Probably the worst
                 part of the route is getting from the 9th St./Civic Center
                 exit to Market and Hayes.  I agree, Fulton >> Lincoln, but it
                 requires an additional tricky turn (Stanyan northbound) from
                 Fell. -dans
2005/6/1-3 [Transportation/Car, Politics/Foreign/Asia/Japan] UID:37926 Activity:nil
6/1     Question on home ownership. Let's say you buy flood, fire,
        earthquake, and land-slide insurance. Then a foreign unidentified
        object enters the atmosphere and creates a big crater in your home
        making it worthless. Are you covered by anyone, like the government?
        Secondly, suppose you decide not to get one of the insurance, since
        it costs too much to buy everything, and that particular disaster
        strikes making your land totally worthless. Are you covered? Or are
        you completely screwed? How about the case where they suddenly
        find carcinogeous, radio-active material in your backyard? Who/what
        covers these things?
        \_ Are you in a swing state in an election year?  If so, notify the
           federal government at once, and they will buy you a new house, and
           give you a gold-plated flying saucer for your trouble.
        \_ I seem to recall a Warner Bros cartoon about just this sort of
           thing. The policy fine print didn't cover, for instance, injury
           from guided missiles. -- ulysses
           \_ Do they still broadcast American cartoons, or is it pretty much
              Japanized? Last time I watched cartoon a year ago it was mostly
              Japanese anime. I'm not sure if I learned anything useful
              from Pokemon and Digimon. PIKA! PIKA! PIKACHU!
              \_ I learned that it's better for pokemon to be friends, and that
                 Team Rocket blasted off again.
        \_ If you ever get into a situation involving strange temporal
           rifts (ala Donnie Darko) then you're covered.
        \_ #1 and #2: your insurance company won't pay you, but you may be able
           to get some kind of disaster aid.  #3: your insurance company won't
           pay you, but you can probably sue the govt. or some company to get
        \_ You can sue God and get compensated in your next life.
        \_ Ebay the "foreign object".  Substances from "foreign objects"
           that enter the atmosphere are in pretty high demand from shadowy
           groups seeking to create nefarious objects of evil from them.  Such
           as Happy Fun Ball.  Warning: do not taunt Happy Fun Ball.  -John
2005/6/1-2 [Transportation/Car] UID:37921 Activity:moderate
6/1     How many people buy a car without a loan these days?
        \_ I did 1.5 years ago.  $500 below invoice, plus $2500 rebate on a
           $17k car.  I wouldn't have done it without that kind of deal.
        \_ Used?  I did 2 years ago.
           \_ New car, sorry.
              \_ I don't buy new cars.  They depreciate way too fast.  A
                 coworker just got T-boned in his one-year old car (other
                 driver ran a red light).  If they consider the car totaled, he
                 will get screwed because of depreciation.
                 \_ They sell gap insurance to cover this. It's fairly
                    cheap. Sometimes it's included with the loan.
        \_ I think the people who buy new cars in cash are pretty few and
           far between, but I don't know.
           \_ my dad did
              \_ Actually, so did my dad and my German teacher, I'm just
                 sayin' I don't THINK it's that common. That was, for
                 example, the only new car my dad ever bought.
        \_ I was prepared to, but then they offered 2 years @ 0%, so hey, I
           did that.
           \_ Same here. Subaru offered 2 yr 0% on my Outback so I jumped
              on that.
        \_ I was prepared not to, but at the time I had no credit history at
           all, so put in a minimal loan and paid it off after a year.
           \_ When I bought my car back in 2000, I was told that banks are not
              required to report your loan if it's less than 3 years, so if
              you're doing it to put it on your credit history, that you
              should get 3 years.  Did I get screwed?
        \_ I bought my car with my home equity line of credit.  I guess that
           counts as loan.
        \_ I've never taken out a loan on a car, I've only bought them with
           cash.  Never a lender nor borrower be! (except a house I guess)
           \_ Same here!
        \_ what's the rate for car loans these days?
        \_ I bought a new car in november with cash.  Traded in my old car,
           and there were incentives, so cash outlay was something like $14k.
2005/5/31-6/2 [Transportation/Car, Transportation/Car/RoadHogs] UID:37906 Activity:nil
5/31    Has anyone seen the new Honda Civic commercial where they put a
        crash dummy outside of the car and then use the Civic to drive
        into that dummy? Then they say something to the effect "We don't
        just care about the people inside, we also care about the people
        \_ Honda's campaign called "Safety for Everyone".  ACE body structure,
           side airbags, stability control, etc... making these standard on
           their latest releases (and any future models).
           \_ Interesting. According to Court TV, automobile is the best
              murder weapon because you have a much better chance at getting
              involuntary manslaughter (rather than first degree) and
              minimal jail time. This move from Honda would turn away would
              be car murderers to other manufacturers, like Hummer.  -troller
2005/5/26 [Transportation/Car] UID:37850 Activity:high
5/26    Car Insurance question: If an insured car is damanaged beyond what
        they claim is the value of the car and they want to pay you off
        for the car value instead of repair cost, do you always have the
        option to settle for a lesser cash amount but keep the car?  Like if
        the damage is cosmetic and expensive to fix but the car is drivable
        and you dont mind getting it fixed on the cheap or leaving some
        cosmetic damage?
        \_ What you can do is allow them to pay off the car as if it
           were totalled and then offer to buy it back from them. They
           will usually sell it back to you for something like $500.
           \_ Yes, but the car will have a salvage title. This is OK if
              you aren't going to sell it, though.
2005/5/24-25 [Transportation/Car] UID:37822 Activity:kinda low
5/24    Anyone here owns exotic sports cars like Ferraris or Lamborghinis?  Do
        you live in a neighborhood where there are no speedbumps or potholes?
        How do you enter parking lots where the at the entrance the street
        surface and the parking lot surface form an lowered angle?
        \_ I have a friend with a fully tricked out Corvette that he races
           with (on a race track).  When he enters a parking lot that has
           any kind of grade, he drives super ultra slowly, and the car
           scraaaaaapes it's way in.
           \_ With all the money car-nuts like this spend on their cars, it
              seems odd to me that they don't have some kind of lift mechanism
              that can change the height of the car relative to the wheels for
              situations like this.  How much could that really add to the
              cost or weight?
                \_ He usually doesn't drive the corvette around town, he's
                   got a "beater car" for that.
        \_ Diablo's have a height adjustment switch that will raise the car for
           situations like this.  I'm sure you'll just have to do what all
           lowered cars do for these <DEAD><DEAD>e in at an angle.
           \_ Ah, that's why my Corvette-owning friend always came in from a
              strange direction as well.
2005/5/18 [Transportation/Car, Transportation/Car/RoadHogs] UID:37741 Activity:nil
5/18    Dumbass rednecks: (
        \_ Well I was going to say Darwin, but I forgot that these people
           also out-reproduce more kids.
           \_ Darwin effect only works on things that affect reproduction.
        \_ Kinda unrelated, but what do you call those Berkeley yuppies
           that drive around in full size pickups?
           \_ Dumbass wannabe rednecks.
           \_ Also, what do you call britney and kevin's new tv show?
              \_ White Trash!
2005/5/17-19 [Transportation/Car] UID:37723 Activity:low
5/17    My company is sending me to Hamburg for 2 weeks to setup equipments.
        I'm thinking of taking another week to rent a car. Does anyone know
        how hard it is for Americans to rent a high performance car, and
        if there are special requirements to drive on Die Autobahn? How about
        how to get an international license?
        \_ It's Guten Tag!
        \_ No special requirements.  When it's marked 130, go 130.  Don't hog
           the left lane.  Most fast cars you can rent from "conventional"
           agencies will probably be big Mercs or BMWs.  Have fun, drive
           safely.  Avoid currywurst. -John
           \_ And no tailgating, no crazy lane changing, no challenging nor
              racing against another driver.  All these are illegal and bad
              etiquette, while going at very high speed in itself is legal.
              \_ Oh yeah and no passing on the right under any circumstances.
                 They will stop you, take vhot zey vant, und zen decide
                 vhezer to blow your ship from ze vater.  -John
                 \_ So anyone with a California license can rent a car?
                    Do they lend you American cars if you're from Tennesse?
                    \_ You may need an intl. driver's license.  Why don't
                       you just call them and ask?  -John
                 \_ In 1998, John wrote "Ve haff high-speed, high-tech,
                    high-gloss Autobahn you peon. Learn to build roads,
                    Amerikaner Schweinehund pig dogs." Are you insulting
                    us John? ARE YOU?
                    \_ Verdammt, you found me out.  Quick, Klaus, hide ze
2005/5/14-16 [Politics/Domestic/Crime, Transportation/Car] UID:37679 Activity:nil
        Tiananmen Square, Uzbekistan style.
2005/5/10-11 [Transportation/Car] UID:37594 Activity:moderate
5/9     I'm going to Italy in a couple of weeks.  I want to rent a car but
        I don't drive manual transmission.  Will I be able to rent an automatic
        car around Europe?
        \_ Yes.  Depends on company.  Call their local office.  Why not just
           ask someone to show you manual?  It's not that hard, and you'll get
           a lot more out of Italian roads with it.  -John
           \_ I don't think I would recommend someone w/ "a couple weeks"
              experience w/ a manual transmission to use one in the alps.
              Shifting gears, braking, and making turns may be a bit much. :-)
              \_ Best way to learn.  Plus if he's confident enough to drive
                 _anything_ in an Italian city, he'll be fine anywhere. -John
        \_ All kidding aside, automatic cars are available on first-come-first-serve
           in at least the UK and Ireland. They do cost extra though, something
           like $10-20/day. My suggestion would be to practice, if $$ is an issue.
        \_ There are automatic Ferraris.
           \_ That's terrible.
              \_ No, it's not.  I believe the "automatic" Ferraris he speaks of
                 are those with gigantic engines in the the 600+ lb. torque
                 category (such as the Enzo).  Trying to shift these engines
                 with a traditional manual is challenging at best.  Most
                 "supercars" these days are equipped with F1 style paddle
                 shifters.  You shift the car, but the car handles the clutch
                 for you.  Even then, driving these cars is apparently
                 something of a challenge - paddle shift cars don't really
                 have a "slip" feature and the accelerator tends to act like
                 a switch, so the throttle is either on or off.  Parking at a
                 curb is probably something of a white knuckle experience.

                 Anyway, you can't "rent" a $750,000 car.
                 \_ Sure you can, it's just very expensive. Some of the GT
                    Porsches also do the weird tiptronic thing.  -John
                 \_ No, by "automatic Ferraris" I meant not the F1-style
                    shifter, but the real automatic as in the Scaglietti
                    \_ Oh, that thing.  I forgot about that.  Right.  The
                       Ferrari "sports coupe."  Geez.  Who wants a sports
                       coupe that spends more time in the shop than on the
                       road?  Ferraris make BMWs seem like paragons of
                        \_ Isn't that true of Italian cars in general?
                           \_ What other Italian cars does anyone care
                              \_ Uh, Lamborghinis & Maseratis for a start?
                                 \_ And Alfa Romeos.
                                    \_ And Fiats, ha ha!
                                        \_ Fix It Again, Tony
2005/5/9-11 [Transportation/Car, Reference/Law/Visa] UID:37589 Activity:moderate
5/9     Here's someone who found a creative use for a math degree:
        \_ What a lamer.
        \_ It crazy to do this for someone whose parents can donate $21m to a
        \_ It's crazy to do this for someone whose parents can donate $21m to a
        \_ This is like Catch Me If You Can. I half heartedly applaud this guy.
           I'd be much happier if he used those money to donate to charity.
           I want to see a modern Robinhood who takes money from big
           faceless corporations and land-owning aristocrats and redistribute
           wealth to people who need them.
           \_ You mean the big faceless corporations that employ the
              people who need the money?  And what "land-owning
              aristocrats?"  If you said, "Steal the money from ugly
              CEOs," it would at least sort of make sense.
              \_ Jrleek, small corporations in the past employed, trained, &
                 treated their employees as family members. Things have
                 changed a lot since the early 20th century. Today, big
                 corporations are owned and operated by shareholders,
                 who want many things, and among them, PROFIT as their #1
                 goal. They increase profit via training/nurturing employees,
                 attracting highly capable workers, giving out incentives,
                 bonuses, etc. However, they also increase profit via other
                 means, such as outsourcing, cutting employee benefits,
                 merger, hostile take-over, increasing work responsibility
                 (legalized increase of work hours), and other methods. And
                 in today's highly competitive world, corporations will do
                 all of the above. We already witnessed the monopoly of AT&T
                 (until 1983), the dominance of Microsoft, the abuse of F1
                 VISAs, the displacement of auto-workers, the use of child
                 labour in South East Asia, etc etc. These are not isolated
                 incidents, but rather, strong tendencies by corporations
                 for the sake of increasing profit. Right now ethical laws
                 exist to protect workers in extraordinary events such as
                 accidents, child bearing, etc. But if corporations had
                 a choice, you bet they'd get rid of these laws. In short,
                 big corporations have no allegiance to anyone, any ideology
                 nor have any compassion for its employees. Its primary
                 interest is PROFIT, period. I guess this is all difficult
                 to grasp but will be a lot clearer when you're force to
                 rethink about your career in the future.
                 \_ I totally forgot that jrleek works in the government so
                    most of what I said becomes totally irrelevant. -pp
                 \_ Do big corporations have allegiance to their shareholders?
                    \_ You asked a very good question. The point is,
                       unlike mom/pop stores, corporations don't have a soul.
                       Let me give you in layman's analogy. The corporation
                       Let me explain in layman's analogy. The corporation
                       (board membors) are like assassins, they take money
                       to do their job, which is to use money to earn more
                       money. If they fail to meet their objectives
                       (not getting their quarterly earning expectations),
                       they risk getting pounded by shareholders (stock
                       price going down, board members fired, take-over).
                       All corporations try to optimize, slime-line, and
                       do creative things to meet earning expectations.  In
                       some cases however, they become so desperate that
                       they take short-cuts or do things without ethical
                       considerations, such as polluting, cutting health
                       benefits, etc. If Ford and GM can double their
                       assembly line productivity by moving to Malaysia or
                       Phillipines (where they can hire cheaper, younger,
                       workers without having to pay them health benefits)
                       do you think board members would object due to ethical
                       considerations? Heck, they already did it in the 80s.
                       What makes you think corporations today are any
                       \_ Interesting that you seem to have something of
                          an understanding of economics, and yet can't add
2005/5/3-4 [Transportation/Car] UID:37507 Activity:moderate
5/3     You know, with Los Angeles traffic that makes 405, 210, and 10
        look like a parking lot, 24 hours a day that totally and utterly
        piss off so many commuters in a fucked up designed and poorly planned
        transportation system, I'm not surprised this is happening. FUCK
        LOS ANGELES TRAFFIC. Let's charge mileages like NJ Turnpike and Garden
        State Highway:,2933,155394,00.html
        \_ No, the correct sentiment is FUCK THE MORONS WHO DESIGNED AND BUILT
           THIS STUPID ASS "CITY".  The traffic is the direct, predictable
           result of moronic, pointless sprawl.
        \_ I absolutely hate LA traffic as much as you, if not more, but
           what's bothering you about this article? Is it that there
           are highway shootings going on, because if so, read carefully
           and you'll see that we're on track to have less shootings
           this year compared to last. Yeah, shootings suck (and are
           scary), but at least the numbers are down.
           \_ "[L.A. traffic is so bad] I'm not surprised this is happening"
              \_ Yeah, I made a weak link but my point was LA Traffic sucks->
                 it pisses off people->pissed off people do crazy things
                 (like the guy in Falling Down). Just a tenuous suggestion.
        \_ doesn't LA rank like #45 nationally in freeway meters/capita?
           IOW, the reason the traffic sucks is because there aren't enough
           freeways, and there are too many people.
           \_ Show me a city anywhere in the world with just as many
              people, where there is less traffic. Oh yeah, all of them.
              The solution is better rapid transit and higher density,
              not more freeways. But if you live there and you want to
              keep pushing for more freeways, go right ahead. It doesn't
              bother me one bit. -smug San Franciscan
              \_ Are you crazy? You think traffic in, say, NYC or London
                 is good? How about in Athens, where only half the
                 population is permitted to drive each day? In fact, I
                 notice when I travel that lots of smaller cities like
                 Seattle are rapidly converging to LA-like traffic.
                 -smug Angeleno
                 \_ Average commutes are far shorter in NYC or London.
                    Why is that? Because most people live nearer their
                    jobs and because there is good transit. I don't know
                    anything about Athens, so you might have me there.
                    Yeah, lots of places are making LA-style mistakes.
                    That is nothing to be happy about.
           \_ I blame LA traffic on illegal immigrants driving jalopies (which
              by the way account for 1/3 of the cars you see on freeways) that
              break down, esp. during traffic hours. -illegal immigrant troll
           \_ All right, I spent a long time googling and I can't come
              up with your 45th nationally source. Some libertarian
              pro-freeway sources, claim that LA is low in freeway miles
              per capita, but others claim in freeway mile lanes per
              capita, LA is high. Got a source for that?
2005/5/2-4 [Transportation/Car, Transportation/Bicycle] UID:37456 Activity:nil
5/2     Is it legal to ride a bicycle through a crosswalk as if you're a
        \_ Here's the longer version of the story:
                Car in the left lane, starts to turn left.
                A bicyclist coming from the right side of the crosswalk
                (who was possibly already in the crosswalk before the car
                started to turn left) ends up hitting the front right fender of
                the car.  Pic at /csua/tmp/carvsbike.jpg
                Whose fault?
                \_ The bike, looks like.  He should be riding in the road,
                   with traffic.  (He is traffic.)  -tom
                   \_ Agreed.
        \_ Probably not.  CVC 21200 says: "(a) Every person riding a
           bicycle upon a highway has all the rights and is subject to
           all the provisions applicable to the driver of a vehicle".
           The sidewalk is not "a highway," but any public street is,
           so if you're riding on the street, you have to ride the way
           a car would.
           (Note that this section does not ban riding on the sidewalk,
           though it gives cities the authority to ban such riding.)
        \_ No.  You may walk it.  If you are riding, you are not a pedestrian.
2005/4/27-28 [Transportation/Car] UID:37382 Activity:high
4/27    I drive down 280 alot and everyone is going >> 65; with cops
        rarely seen stopping people. Is it still worth it to buy a
        radar detector if you stay under say 80 and drive sanely ?
        \_ 79 mph on 280, don't change lanes, you'll be fine. my buddy got
           a ticket last week going 85mph.
        \_ If you drive North, like I do everyday, be careful when you hit
           92, I see people get busted EVERYDAY around that section. Just
           a few days ago I saw 3 police cars/bikes spaced out around 2-3
           miles each. damn. I slow down when I approach 92...
        \_ i can't drive 85! do 100
        \_ A friend with a BMW 745i routinely takes it up to the maximum
           governered speed on 280 (roughly 145, I believe).  He's pretty
           stupid, but he hasn't been busted yet.
           \_ governed by... a microprocessor?
              \_ Yes, I realize that sentence is unclear.  Almost any street
                 legal car sold by the Germans that is capable of doing over
                 155mph has an electronic governor that prevents it from
                 going over that speed or some speed close to it.  I believe
                 it's sort of a "gentleman's agreement" between the German auto
                 companies.  Of course, the speed governors can be removed by
                 a knowledgeable auto mechanic, but I'm not sure what this does
                 to your warranty.  As an example, I believe a Mercedes E55
                 with the governor removed can do 170+.
                 \_ Mercedes E55 AMG, the fastest sedan in the world.
                    \_  Is this still true? I've done 162 in mine with no
                    \_  Is this still true? I've done 162 in my !E55 with no
                        problem, coincidentally on 280.
           \_ Are his tires rated for that speed? I think normal tires go to
              around 100 MPH safely?
                \_ on a 745i you'd hope he has Z rated tires.
                   \_ Actually, V rated, which is still safe, although you can
                      always suffer a blowout.
        \_ I don't like breaking the law... I just wish the speed limits
           would be raised where it makes sense. 280 can easily be limit 70
           at the least. But it isn't. What bullshit.
           \_ 65 MPH is just 5 MPH less than 70 MPH ... And everyone (including
              me) just goes 70 MPH anyhow.
              \- isnt 280 supposed to be pretty accident-prone? maybe because
                 of the curvature and/or banking?
                \_ My understanding is that 280 was designed by a guy who also
                   designed racetracks.  All the curves are banked so that you
                   can travel quite fast on them without fear of spinning out.
                   Assuming dry weather of course.
                \_ 280 is nothing compared to the Autobahn. At any rate, my
                   \- apples and oranges. although one thing that may explain
                      280 and autobahn is large speed differentials. i do enjoy
                      passing people on the right an glaring at them on 280.
                   European friends say that accidents rates are lower
                   there than in the US because cars cost more [relative to
                   how much you save]. So people who buy cars and drive
                   tend to be older, more cautious, and have much more
                   courtesy than in the US. People feel privileaged to
                   drive. In theUS cars+gas+repair+insurance are so cheap
                   that driving is a God given right. What say you
                   \_ You're looking too deeply into it--esp. in Germany it's
                      a "right" like in the US--driving tets are harder, and
                      a "right" like in the US--driving tests are harder, and
                      people just grow up being used to high speed goose-
                      stepping regimented traffic.  Oh and passing on the
                      right, hogging the fast lane and tailgating are fined
                      (fines tend to be higher.)  Additionally I have a theory
                      that, because more people drive stickshifts, you have
                      fewer brake lights as people decelerate, causing more
                      orderly traffic flow.  Just a thought.  -John
              \_ I think in Germany the cars and roads are better regulated.
                 A lot of junky or modified cars here, or cars with
                 maintenance issues like misaligned headlights etc. would
                 not be allowed on the road. I think they have like periodic
                 maintenance inspections you have to pass. Highway design is
                 another issue... like on 101 there are several exits
                 where there's no space at all for people to accelerate up
                 to the proper merging speed or to slow down to make a
                 sharp turnoff. They even constructed a new on-ramp from Moffet
                 in MV just recently and it has a sharp turn right as you're
                 trying to get up to speed. Or while you're accelerating,
                 on the same small strip of asphalt other people are braking
                 to exit. Also the Aryan race is better than you stupid
                 \_ I saw this documentary on The History Channel (I think it's
                    called Road Engineering or something). Basically, after the
                    Allies went into Germany, they noticed that the Autobahn
                    was mainly straight with occassional big turns. The
                    Americans laughed at crappy German engineering. 10 years
                    later the Americans found out that curves help keep drivers
                    awake and alert esp. late at night, and renovated Route 66
                    (which at the time was mainly straight) to include nice
                    curves. That actually helped reduce accident rates by 1/2.
                    Yeah, crappy Aryan engineering.
                    \_ Denser population = more villages to have to build
                       curves around.  Although given who built them, I dunno
                       whether that was really a concern.  -John
        \_ i can't drive 85! do 100
        \_ This reminds me of the time when I was 5 years old and my dad
           got pulled over by a cop. The cop asked my dad if he knew how
           fast he was going, and he said 60 [miles]. Well as a kid I
           didn't know any better and shouted "No you weren't, you almost
           hit 100! [kilometers]" We had a very long talk after that.
        \_ Remember that 280 is now a part of the CHP's "focus routes",
           which means they are doing more patrols on that highway. So
           be careful. I think a radar detector wouldn't be a bad
                \_ Any reccomendations on models and where to get a
                good price? And do cops still use radar these days?
                  \_ The best radar detector is still the V1.
2005/4/25-26 [Transportation/Car] UID:37347 Activity:nil
        "At the Itami station, before the site of the accident, the driver
        overran the platform by 26 feet and was forced to back up. Last June,
        the same driver was reprimanded for overshooting a platform by 328
        feet.  Today, the driver apparently failed to negotiate the curve and
        braked suddenly, causing passengers to be tossed around inside the
        cars. The first two cars jumped the tracks about 200 feet from the
        apartment building, struck a car and eventually hit the building,
        though injuries inside the building appeared limited by the fact that
        the first car crashed into the parking garage."
2005/4/22-23 [Transportation/Car] UID:37317 Activity:moderate
4/22    We've Been Led To Expect Free Parking: (sfexainer)
        A great column exploring the roots of some of the fundamental
        problems we face in America (expensive housing, traffic congestion,
        obesity) and what we can do about it.
        \_ I often wonder what America would look like if road construction
           and maintainence had been left to the free market, instead of
           subject to massive government subsidy and oversight.  The
           interstate system is a really good example of centralized planning
           and it's unintended consequences.
                \_ where is this magic free market no subsidy transportation
                   system in the world?
                   \_ Nowhere; transportation systems are an example of
                      something the free market is ineffective at providing.
                      But that doesn't mean it should all be subsidized;
                      ideally your subsidies should be aimed at promoting
                      larger goals.  -tom
                      \_ My point was that massive road building was a concious
                         choice made by the government.  It's only now that
                         our country is so car dependent that road building
                         is an "essential service."
                         \_ For a long time, the massive road building was not
                            done to the exclusion of supporting rail travel.
                            \_ actually, the rail network in the US was
                               mostly built with private money; the government
                               granted land but that was about all.  But
                               the railroads became oppressive monopolies,
                               which along with the oil companies brought
                               Teddy Roosevelt into power as a "trust-buster".
                               Extremely harsh restrictions on rail
                               monopolies, never revisted over time, squeezed
                               the life out of the industry over the next 30
                               years, and rail in the US has never recovered.
                               \_ You dismiss the granting of millions of
                                  acres of land like it is nothing.
                                  \_ It's not nothing, but most of the land
                                     wasn't very valuable.  -tom
                                     \- do you know what SPRINT stands for?
                                        interesting question what is the value
                                        of fibre optic routes. some litigation
                                        on this.
                                        \_ SPCC started offering phone service
                                           in 1978.  That was, what, 100 years
                                           after the railroad land grant?
                                  \_ Lands for freeways were also granted.  But
                                     in addition to that, freeway constructions
                                     were funded with govt money.
                                        \_ I'll bet freeways and roads take up
                                           way way way way way way way more
                                           land than the railroads.  Railroads
                                           are much easier to build and
                                           maintain as well.
                                     \_ Yes, but railroad companies also
                                        got 10 sq. miles of land for every
                                        mile of railyway.
           \_ I think it would have been more expensive and worse.
            \_ Without the HUGE road subsidies in this country trains would
               be used a lot more.  That's what pisses me off when Bush
               says shit about how Amtrak needs to support itself.  Amtrak
               can't compete against a road network that gets insane amount
               of tax money for expansion/support.  It's not a fair system.
                \_ Hypocrisy seems to be a requirement in todays Republican
           \_ Privatizing apple and orange vendors, GREAT idea. You get lots of
              competition and even if they're too expensive, you can choose to
              not buy them. Privatizing basic, essential infrastructures like
              water, energy, and transportation... you get the Enron effect.
              \_ Halliburton!
                 \- does anybody know if you have to pay the city a per-day
                    chanrge in SF if you want to say reserve three parking
                    spaces in front of your building for a week "for construc-
                    tion" ... i see some of these places reserved for
                    ridiculous amounts of time which lie fallow most of the
                    time. i think the article misses some non-economic factors
                    as well. i think the sf parking people should also go
                    after the giant number of illegit handicapped placards.-psb
2005/4/20-22 [Transportation/Car, Transportation/Car/Hybrid] UID:37290 Activity:high
4/20    Hey MOTD -- Awhile ago, I wrote asking for advice about a new car (I
        was the guy with the Ford Taurus that might have a blown head gasket).
        As it turns out, I did not have a blown head gasket; but several
        people came forward with suggestions for a new car.  In the end, after
        much research, I ended up buying a Honda Accord Hybrid.  It was a
        little bit out of the base price range I had set forward, but you
        know?  It's turning out to be a *fantastic* car.  Whoever suggested
        it -- thank you so much!!!
        \_ Ford's new ad should say: "Ford Taurus. We'll make you love your
           your next new car."
        \_ so what do you like about it?
           \_ For a car of its class, it's got good power, very roomy, very
              comfortable, very quiet (even at speed), decent sound, doesn't
              suck to look at, great gas mileage for a 255hp v6, and with
              luck, will have good reliability.  It's got a number of neat
              comfort/cool/convenience features that just make it easy to
              commute in.  The one complaint I have is that the trunk is a
              little small, and the rear seats don't fold down (that's where
              the batteries are).    -OP
              \_ What gas mileage are you getting?  Can you charge it with AC
                 power supply?
                 \_ I'm getting about 30-32 MPG (I do a pretty even mix of
                    freeway and city street driving...heh...and I've been told
                    I have a lead foot).  I'm taking a long roadtrip to socal
                    this weekend -- I'll get back to you on the sustained
                    freeway MPG.  You don't need to charge it, the car's
                    charger connects automatically when you brake or when you
                    take your foot off the gas.  FWIW, manufacturer's spec
                    claims 29/37.  I suspect that's not too far off from
                    reality (maybe 1-2 MPG on each).    -OP
                    \_ Treadmill dyno tests are never accurate in that
                       respect. They can't simulate wind resistance.
                       \_ Yup...which is why I'm not claiming that it's the
                       \_ The tests don't even actually measure the amount of
                          gasoline that's burnt.  They only measure the amount
                          of exhaust and guestimate the amount of gas burnt,
                          which makes low-emission vehicles get higher numbers.
                    \_ For comparison, the non-hybrid Accord has only 240hp and
                       claims only 21/30 MPG.  The hybrid wins.
                       \_ Dang, my fat 1994 Saturn gets 27 on average.
        \_ How much did it cost? what State?
           Although I don't doubt it is a nice car, realize you are
           comparing to an old Taurus.
           \_ Man, I *loved* my old Taurus.  It was a great car that met my
              needs excellently.  It just wasn't making the transition to
              old age very gracefully once it hit 100k.  I'd have bought
              another Taurus were it not for two things: the Taurus as a model
              is being retired, and the exceptional degree of shady
              underhanded business practice at almost every Ford dealership
              I've ever had the displeasure of interacting with.  I mean,
              one expects a dealership to be a den of thieves, but goddamn,
              it was just grotesque.  -OP
           \_ Agreed. Pretty much anything compared to American consumer tech
              is good. The automobile industry now is like what electronic
              industry was 20-30 years ago. While American companies were
              providing superior services, Japanese companies were providing
              goods that required no service. There used to be a time when
              everyone bought from Philco, Westinghouse, Admiral, Emerson,
              General Electric / GE, Sparton, Stromberg-Carlson, Airline,
              Crosley, etc. How many of those companies survived these days?
              Just 2, RCA and Zenith. Nowadays, everyone buys from Sony, Aiwa,
              Panasonic, Fujitsu, Hitachi, etc. I predict the same thing will
              happen to American car companies. They'll fold, one by one,
              because they just can't make shit.
              \_ Except for Chrysler, which is now a German company.  I was
                 highly amused to see the Chrysler 300 being named "car of
                 the year" everywhere.  The general gist of the articles was
                 "Hey, and it's from America!" except that the car is
                 essentially an old Mercedes E series with a softer ride and
                 an American V8.
              \_ Zenith is no longer an American company.
                 \_ Neither is RCA, owned by Thompson, a french (?)
                    conglomerate, with pretty much the worst reliability when
                    it comes to electronics.
                    \_ WOW, ok. So Americans don't make nice foreign quality
                       electronics anymore, and the auto industry is becoming
                       the same. What's next, software and processors? Hmmm...
                       \_ 1) Music
                          2) Movies
                          3) Microcode (software)
                          4) High-speed pizza delivery
                          \_ Nice Snowcrash reference, but...
                             1) Music industry is dying.  CD sales are off
                                25% in the last few years, and already 8% this
                             2) More and more movies are being made offshore
                                and out of the country in places like Toronto
                                and New Zealand.  The reason?  Avoiding the
                                moviemaker unions.
                             3) Bangalore is nipping at our heels.
                             4) Well, you got me there.  Soon we will all be
                                delivering pizza.
                       \_ heh, apparently pizza hut had their asses handed
                          to them in Thailand last decade.  they franchised
                          and the franchisee dumped them and formed their
                          own chain.  pizza hut eventually got back into
                          the market but doesn't sell like the local.
                          nothing is sacred.
                       \_ James Kunstler always goes on about how you can't
                          have a nation of tanning hut managers as the basis
                          for your economy.
                \_ These American companies died because bozos like you keep
                   buying foreign goods. YOU killed American economy! Damn
                   you unpatriotic foreign goods lovers.     -Patriot
                   \_ If a company makes crappy goods and I'm not a major
                      shareholder or on the board, I have only one way to
                      express my discontent....with my dollars.  I'd rather
                      buy American, but more importantly, I'd rather spend
                      my hard earned cash on shit that actually, you know,
                      WORKS.  I'm not all that sympathetic to a business
                      that refuses to get with the times and do what it has
                      to do to make superior product -- and dies as a
                      result.              -Realistic Patriot
                   \_ My amplifier is USA made, going 9 years now without
                      a problem, a total tank.  Did cost $800 though.  I always
                      buy USA made if the quality is the same or better, and
                      the price isn't too much higher.
                      \_ American Apparel! New store will open on Telegraph
                         on the 7th of May. Could so many skinny jailbait
                         models in softcore poses be wrong?
        \_ Yeah, Honda ergonomics and design is just kind of amazing to me.
           Everything just works *right* and is where you expect it
           to be, even if you have never driven a Honda before.
           \_ Unlike Fords..  They seem to make everything backwards just
              to piss me off.
2005/4/13-15 [Transportation/Car] UID:37177 Activity:low
4/13    "Two men on their way to Bible study were attacked by a gunman in
        another car on the Harbor Freeway this afternoon, leaving one man dead
        and a busy road closed as rush hour approached. ... All four windows in
        the victims' car were closed, leading investigators to suspect that the
        occupants had no contact with the assailant's car before the shooting.",0,2212131.story

        "A 13-year-old is in custody today on suspicion of murder after he
        repeatedly struck a 15-year-old with a baseball bat after a Pony League
        game in Palmdale, authorities said. ... Several said Rourke was first
        struck in the knee, and then in the head as he bent over. Others said
        he was first struck on the chin, then the head.",0,2411050.story
        \_ Funny how when a kid who's involved in, say, heavy metal music and
           computer games goes nuts and kills someone the media blame the
           Evil Games.  Yet when a kid who's part of the orgy of
           compettitiveness and mean spiritedness they call "comptetitive
           team sports" goes nuts it must just be a freak accident.
           Fuck baseball.
           \_ In GTA3 you can whack people with a baseball bat. -FriendlyTroll
           \_ Ah, apple pie, baseball and the culture of life.
        \_ Shouldn't great journalism like this blogged about somewhere?
           \_ Why yes ... on the CSUA motd!
2005/4/12-14 [Transportation/Car, Computer/SW/Security] UID:37151 Activity:nil
4/12    Free transbay bus service for one month:
        Pretty attractive when gas price is high.
        \_ It's only free westbound.  Return trip still costs $3.  But I
           think it's a good publicity for the new park & ride lot.
2005/4/7-8 [Transportation/Car, Transportation/Car/RoadHogs] UID:37108 Activity:very high
4/7     Jesus says gas prices will increase even more this summer.,0,5025383.story
        "When adjusted for inflation, U.S. fuel prices peaked at $3.12 in
        March 1981"
        \_ Premium unleaded at Chevron in Berkeley is $2.92 / gallon.  The
           price for regular is $2.72 / gallon.
           \_ $2.79 and $2.99 at the Shell in San Francisco at 30th and Mission.
           \_ 2.49 and 2.69 at usa on dixon / n. milipitas.
        \_ Um, gas prices go up every summer.  This is a surprise?  If CA wants
           cheaper gas in the summer, maybe we shouldn't require the producers
           to use a wacky blend just for CA.
           \_ ...and then L.A. would be unliveable
        \_ In other news, the price of oil dropped today.
        \_ Just an fyi, the $3.12 figure is highest *average*.  When premium
           self-serve in downtown SF hits $3.13 don't all go crazy.
           Ye may commence hysterics at $3.85 / gallon. -op
           \_ Hysterics?  Don't they already pay more than that in Europe?
              \_ Yes.  And the tax on it here ain't going down, so when  it's
                 at $4/gallon, they UK's paying about 8 or so... -John
        \_ you know, we moan and bitch when gas price is going up while
           shut our mouths when housing price doubled in the past 5 years.
           We pay approx 1/3 of our earnings on rent and/or mortgage while
           only 1/10 to 1/20 of it on gasoline. Our sense of scope is just
           wacked. If anything, we should be moaning and bitching about
           land ownership inequality and things to alleviate this crisis
           instead of something as insignificant as price adjustments in
           gasoline. And I'm all for price hike if it means less people driving
                                                            \_ fewer
             Maybe he means "lesser", as in "those who drive SUVs _/
             are lesser people."
           their damned SUVs and polluting the earth. And I mean it even if
           I have to pay 2X for delivery or anything else like grocery.
           \_ The problem is that oil prices undermine all other prices.  And
              might be able to move to a smaller house and pay less rent/
              mortgage, but everyone has to eat.  And since agriculture
              just uses land to turn petroleum and natural gas into food,
              higher oil prices == higher food prices.
              \_ Plus oil money drains out of the country while housing costs
                 stay. Well, unless it's owned by foreigners and rented out.
                 Actually I'm not sure just what the housing price increases
                 really mean. All that debt goes somewhere. The US debt ends
                 up causing a ton of interest payments to foreign lenders.
                 Oh well this place is screwed, I better get my Euro
                 citizenship in order.
           \_ 75% of us are landowners. Why would we bitch?
              \_ 75% land ownership in America? Wow, America IS rich! Moooo...
                 \_ Well, the number is something over 69%. Do you want to
                    compare that to, say, Germany? It's 43% there.
                 \_ 75% land ownership for EVERYONE, including children under
                    12 years old? Or do you only count after 18 years of age?
                    \_ The homeownership rate is computed by dividing the
                       number of owner-occupied housing units by the number
                       of occupied housing units or households.
        \_ PRAISE JESUS!!!
2005/4/2-4 [Transportation/Car] UID:37042 Activity:high
4/1     Hey motd, the paint job on my car got thrashed because of some dumb
        prank that went a little too far.  How much does it cost to get a good,
        professional, manufacturer's quality repaint?  Nothing fancy, just a
        single color over the car with no cute flames or naked women or
        anything.   TIA.
        \_ What kind of car? I don't think you will be happy to know the
           \_ Honda Accord.  And no, I don't think so either, but it's pretty
              unacceptable in its current state.
        \_ a good quality whole car paint job would easily run $3-5000
           or more if you go to a shop who take pride in their work (and
           won't paint it w/o repairing every single ding or dent). there is
           a lot of labor to strip it down and paint all of the bodywork
           for a seamless job, compared to the earl scheib special.
        \_ Earl Scheib, $299.95 for the "quality" paint job, with free one
           day car rental.  Ob ygwypf.  Are you paying for it or is the
           \_ Theoretically, the prankster.  In reality, probably me.  >_<
        \_ So what was the prank?
2005/3/31-4/1 [Transportation/Car] UID:37012 Activity:nil
3/31    Thieves cut off finger to start up Mercedes, which requires biometric
        \_ Same thing happened when only the bank manager could open bank
           vaults-- great idea, until they kidnap that guy and his family.
        \_ Darn and I thought my biometric Mercedes keyed to my penis was
           a good idea ... back to the dealer with that baby!
           \_ It's still a good idea since no one can cut off your short penis.
2005/3/30 [Transportation/Car] UID:36965 Activity:nil
3/30    Valet Girls:
2005/3/28 [Transportation/Car] UID:36932 Activity:kinda low
3/28    Do middle-class African americans spend a greater part of their
        incomes on cars then Cacasians and Asians?
        \_ shac, you want to answer this?
        \_ Before or After factoring in that they tend to get taken
           advantage of on car loans?
            \_ RACIST! There are plenty of wealthy African Americans. Your
               stereotype is sickening.
               \_ Statistically speaking, she is actually right. I
                  think I saw somewhere on edmunds or 60 Minutes that
                  car dealers will size up a customer based on their
                  ethnicity because they know roughly how much they
                  can milk you based on that.
        \_ ^Cacasians^Caucasians
           Stupid troll.
           \_ I posted this because I saw an African American woman in her
              early 30s who works at my place in a shiney red Mercedes.  I
              have a pretty good idea what she makes and was surprised.
              She may have family money or have other sources of income but
              that is strage considering the job she has.  Will the new
              bankruptcy law be good or bad for African Amerricans?  I am
              not a troll!
              \_ ob I posted this because I saw a little Chinese
                 who works at my place in a shiney lowered white Acura, with
                 front/rear spoilers, huge muffler, and large ACURA stickers.
                 I am not a troll!
              \_ Maybe her husband/bf makes six figures and her low-paying job
                 is just for killing time.
                 \_ She has one of those jobs which are pretty low satisfaction
                    so I think it would be one of those "I need to work so I
                    work" cases.  But that is a guess.
        \_ I think in this case race doesn't matter much. How much someone
           spends on an automobile depends on how much he/she values an auto-
           mobile. There are ppl who spend the most they can afford on a nice
           ride and buy less furniture & clothes (example) and don't mind
           living in debt. Your African American colleague may have gotten the
           car with little to money down (it's very easy these days) and now
           living paycheck to paycheck or worse, borrowing from credit cards
           to make ends meet - but that's ok for her, since she has a nice
           car. OTOH, there are people who buy First Class plane tickets all
           the time but drive a shitty Yugo. It depends on where your priority
           is (although I do notice that most African Americans spend their
           cash on their auto).
           cash on their auto). -tom
           \_ I am aware different people chose to spend their money
              differently.  I also know you can easily borrow money.
              You last observation which I share is what movivated the
              posting.  I am not troll.
2005/3/28 [Transportation/Car, Recreation/Dating, Politics/Domestic] UID:36910 Activity:low
3/27    So I'm really confused about the Schiavo case. Is there a motivation
        for Michael to see his wife die? Is it insurance money or something?
        In another word, what's in it for Michael? I mean, it doesn't cost him
        anything to keep the feeding tube or anything, and if anything, it
        would cost him MORE to remove the feeding tube, no?
        \_ It's called caring about the ones you loved and respecting their
           last wishes.
           \_ which have never been established.  That is the whole point,
              how many times does this have to be repeated?
                \_ It has been established 30 times in the courts.  How
                   many times does this need to be repeated?
                   \_ see above
                   \_ Until the courts come up with a descision the poster
                      agrees with.  It's not due process if you lose!
2005/3/16-17 [Transportation/Car, Reference/RealEstate] UID:36711 Activity:high
3/16    Hitachi's new robots: (
        \_ Why do robots have to resemble human appearence anyway?  Eyes (video
           cameras) on head, two arms, and so on.  And somehow using wheels
           that are much simpler instead of legs is a technological
           \_ Cf. Daleks.
              \_ mere shells housing organic matter.
              \_ Do you have stairs in your house?
                 \_ No.  But if you do, you can get two robots without legs at
                    lower cost.
                    \_ Then I'd be protected.
                       \_ You might also stand a better chance of getting away
                          in case they went nuts and started biting off
                          people's heads or bludgeoning them with their own
                          torn off limbs or something.
2005/3/12 [Transportation/Car, Reference/Law/Court] UID:36657 Activity:high
3/12    So when are they going to catch this guy?  From how it sounds, he took
        the Grand Theft Auto strategy and won't be killing himself; he sounds
        determined and focused, and wants to survive.
        Jury foreman: "He seemed like a pretty logical, intelligent, articulate
        Neighbor: "He walked around with no T-shirt, and didn't come off as a
        9-to-5 guy. Some of the women liked him, but I didn't trust him at all." He was accused of binding his ex-girlfriend -- an executive
        at a Fortune 500 company -- with duct tape and assaulting her over a
        three-day period last fall. ... Nichols had claimed the sex was
        consensual. His first trial began two weeks ago, but ended in a
        hung jury. ... Nichols' last known job was as a computer technician
        for a subsidiary of UPS.
        Prosecutor: "I really believe that this was a random situation. This is
        not a defendant who has demonstrated violence in the past. The violence
        in his past was specific to his victim."
        \_ Already have:
           \_ Yeah, I thought he would go to a friend's house.  He would have
              needed to have surfaced to buy food if he really slept in his
              car.  Guess he gave up.
2005/3/8-9 [Transportation/Car, Computer/SW/Security] UID:36586 Activity:low
3/8     "It was certainly an accident ... The car was traveling at a velocity
        that couldn't have been more than 40 kilometers (25 miles) per hour
        ... The government has a duty to point out that the reconstruction of
        the tragic event ... from the direct account of our secret service
        official who was with Dr. Calipari does not coincide, totally, with
        what has been said so far by the U.S. authorities."
        [Fini] said Calipari, an experienced officer who had negotiated the
        release of other hostages in Iraq in the past, "made all the
        necessary contacts with the U.S. authorities," both with those in
        charge of airport security and with the forces patrolling areas next
        to the airport.
        -G. Fini, Italian foreign minister ( CNN)
        Another article:  [The security agent in the car] said that a light
        was flashed at the car after a curve and that gunfire -- lasting 10 or
        15 seconds -- started immediately afterward, disputing U.S. military
        claims that several attempts were made to get the car to stop before
2005/3/3-4 [Transportation/Car, Transportation/Car/RoadHogs] UID:36508 Activity:high
3/3     "AAA Says Average Driving Cost Is 56.2 Cents Per Mile For 2004",,1008010000%257c4513,00.html
        That doesn't even include bridge tolls.  I always thought it's about
        39 cents per mile, per IRS tax forms.
        \_ That's what the IRS gives you, but it's not the real cost.  -tom
           \_ Have you ever estimated the *negative* cost per mile in terms
              of health benefits from riding your bike to work?  That would
              be an interesting calculation.
              \_ I don't know, Viagra can be expensive.
           \_ nog.  that's just the cost of running/maintaining the car.
              it doesn't include the cost say on your health.  or roads.
              \_ Or the cost of suburban sprawl or the cost in lost
                 farmland or the cost to rebuild all the infrastructure
                 left behind in crumbling cities or the cost in broken
                 communities or the cost....
        \_ Public transportation looks better and better once you start
           looking at the full costs of owning a car.  If you drive for
           100 miles, you pay approx $50 ...
           \_ did you include all the taxes people pay into it?
              \_ The taxes paid into the freeway system or the public
                 transportation system?
              \_ Since both public transportation and cars are massively
                 subsidized, that doesn't seem necessary.  And I meant
                 better as in cheaper, not more convenient.  And might
                 become more "convenient" in the next few years as
                 oil prices zoom up.
           \_ Public transporation stinks. The majority of people will
              gladly pay for the additional cost to NOT have to take
              public transportation. As for the health risk, I think
              that you are obviously more likely to die in a car than
              the subway. However, I bet you're more likely to get sick
              from communicable diseases taking the public transport than
              if you were to own your own car.
              In addition, the convenience of a car far outweigh its costs.
              Business also would be a lot less efficient if we had to
              rely on public transport. It may work in high density areas
              like N.Y. N.Y or S.F., but in places like California, especially
              Southern California, it certainly will not work.
              \_ It is already starting to work. When it takes three hours
                 each way to commute from Riverside to LA by car, people
                 start taking the train, as they have already. If transit
                 was as massively subsidized as the car, it could be a
                 high speed rail link and even more would take it.
                 \_ I wouldn't call 3% working. Riverside is also pretty
                    damn far for a commute into the city. Also, most people
                    in LA don't even work in LA.
                    \_ That is a failure of planning. Just wait till gasoline
                       hits $10/gallon.
                 \_ How are cars more massively subsidized than transit?
                       Tremendous costs are associated with buying and
                       paving over all the parking spaces used by cars.
                       \_ Very useful info!  I didn't know heavy rail actually
                          has lower operating cost than light rail.
                       \_ What's the difference between heavy rail and commuter
                        \_ From the linked article:

                           U.S. rail transit services require about $12.5
                           billion annual public subsidy (total capital
                           and operating expenses minus fares), about an
                           extra $90 per Large Rail city resident. However,
                           economic benefits more than repay these subsidies:
                           rail transit services are estimated to provide
                           $19.4 billion in annual congestion cost savings,
                           $8.0 billion in roadway cost savings,
                           $12.1 billion in parking cost savings,
                           $22.6 billion in consumer cost savings, and
                           $5.6 billion in traffic accident cost savings.

                           So in other words, all those people taking BART
                           and Caltrain aren't driving alongside you on
                           \_ My father, a hard core right winger, has
                              come up with his idea of how public transit
                              should work after he worked as a bus driver
                              for a year or so.  Basically, the bus should
                              be free (maybe a dime), and buses should
                              always have right-of-way, and they should
                              have a radio to make lights turn green for
                              them.  People would flock to busses in
                              droves. BART should be free too. -jrleek
                              \_ Turning lights green for the bus doesn't
                                 win you nearly as much as you think; if you
                                 get any kind of regular ridership, the bus
                                 winds up stopping all the time anyway. -tom
                              \_ Lights on San Pablo Ave are already turning
                                 green for the San Pablo Rapid buses.  Check
                              \_ sounds a Socialistic idea.
                                 \_ Yeah.  But in his experiance the
                                    busses were heavily subsidized anyway.
                                    Basically, few rode the things, and
                                    about half or more those who did ride,
                                    rode free or with some discount.  He
                                    gave a lot of free rides.  The money
                                    coming into the till just wasn't
                                    paying for anything anyway. -jrleek
                                    \_ A failure of centralized planning?
                                       I disbelieve!  According to our good
                                       friend tom, it is the free market that is
                                       mathematicall proven (!) not to work.
                                         -- ilyas
                                       \_ Are you really this stup...Oh, right.
                                    \_ I don't get it. I thought conservatives
                                       hate things tied to Socialism.
                                    \_ Not that this is some new idea.
                                       Salt Lake City's light rail system
                                       is free downtown. -jrleek
2005/3/3-4 [Transportation/Car] UID:36507 Activity:nil
3/3     How much do you pay for your car insurance?  Who is your provider?
        \_ $508/6 months, 21st Century.  100/300k, 2003 Mazda Protege5, <5k
           miles per year.  13 years with zero records, not even a parking
2005/3/2-3 [Transportation/Car, Transportation/Car/Hybrid] UID:36491 Activity:nil
3/2     Today's features a "How Firefox Works" page!
2005/3/2-3 [Transportation/Car] UID:36486 Activity:nil
3/2     For those interested in engine braking, check out Jake Brake:
        \_ This is impossible to retrofit into the standard overhead camshaft
           \_ Yeah, it's mostly for big-rigs.
2005/2/28-3/1 [Transportation/Car] UID:36463 Activity:moderate
2/28    Stupid question, at what speed can I safely switch from D to 2 on
        my car? Thx.
        \_ Stupid answer: probably depends on your car.
        \_ At speed below which 2nd gear will bring your RPM to the red line.
           In addition, the lower the speed the better it is for your
           transmission.  If your car is 4-speed, you may be jumping from 4th
           to 2nd which is worse.  Also, your tail brake light doesn't lit when
           your car decelerates from shifting down, so you may get rear-ended
           if the driver behind you isn't paying attention.  Of course if
           you're trying to save yourself when your brakes fail while going
           down hill, shift by all means.
           \_ What "wears out" when I down shift to slow down on hills?
              Puts stress on the engine? Transmission? Breakpads are easy
              to replace, engine is not. I keep hearing car gurus recommending
              to use engine break, just wondering....
              \_ Transmission, but don't worry about it unless you're really
                 abusing it. The biggest problem is remembering to go back
                 to D after the hills.
              \_ shifting down w/ a big mismatch in speeds causes high
                 wear and strains on the transmission and clutch(es). steady
                 engine braking, e.g. on a hill after already in the right
                 gear causes much less wear but can overheat an automatic
                 transmission because more of the energy is being absorbed
                 (converted to heat) in the transmission's fluid couplings
                 than in a manual gearbox.
              \_ As for brake pads, the issue here is not how many months your
                 pads can last before they need replacement, but how many
                 minutes they can last before they fail before you reach the
                 bottom of the hill.  When brake pads (or discs/drums, not
                 sure) overheat, they fail all of a sudden, and you can't brake
                 \_ If your car gets regular maintenance this shouldn't be an
                    issue unless you drive like a maniac or drive a really
                    shitty car.  Transmissions are a lot more expensive to
                    repair/replace than brake systems.
2005/2/23 [Transportation/Car] UID:36372 Activity:nil
2/23    has IBM ever made a silver Thinkpad? black is so dreary.
        \_ Enjoy.  -John
2005/2/15 [Transportation/Car, Transportation/Car/Hybrid] UID:36172 Activity:moderate
2/14    A friend of mine is having a problem w/ her 2001 civic. She says
        that it occasionally refuses to accelerate past 30 and just makes
        a whizzing sound. She has taken it to the dealer twice and they
        don't think that there is anything wrong w/ it.
        I'm not really a car guy so the only think I can think of is that
        it is the transmission and I was going to check the transmission
        fluid for her tomorrow to make sure it doesn't smell burnt, &c.
        Anyone else have any idea about what else I can check (or know
        of a reliable dealer in SJ or Santa Clara?). tia.
        \_ What dealership has she been using (the one that's claimed nothing
           is wrong two times running now)?
        \_ It's not unusual to replace or rebuilt the transmission after
           120-150K. I had my Accord transmission rebult at 155K, similar
           symptoms. Your engine will be revving high but it will not engage
           at certain speed. I don't have a recommendation except to NOT
           GO TO AAMCO!!! They are a bunch of liars and will rip you off.
        \_ VTEC?
        \_ mechanic recommendations here:
        \_ I have a 91 Civic DX hatchback and it had two occasions of having
           problems accelerating past 40 and past 60 (no whirring noise,
           though, just the sound of the RPM dying even as I floored it).
           Once was a year ago.  I fixed it by starting my car and letting
           it idle for 10 seconds versus the instant drive mode I had sunken
           into.  Now it happened again after I got back from a 10-day trip
           out of the country.  I'm waiting for it to fix itself again by
           letting it warm up.  Methinks there's some air in the fuel line
           somewhere, and by letting the car warm up, the air is being bubbled
           out.  I'm going to add the $10 fuel injection cleaner into my
           tank later this week.  If none of this resolves in a couple weeks,
           I'm taking it to Kondo Motors in Santa Monica for them to diagnose.
           Japanese-owned and operated, and fair prices. -car dufus
        \_ whizzing sound?  from what part of car?  one kind of acceleration
           failure I have seen is bad ignition cables  allowing leakage and
           poor ignition.  can be very intermittent and annoying.
           \_ ucla cs/ee student, is that you?
        \_ I would recommend AAMCO!!!
        \_ whizzing sound?  from what part of car?  one kind of acceleration
           failure I have seen is bad ignition cables  allowing leakage and
           poor ignition.  can be very intermittent and annoying.
2005/2/6-7 [Transportation/Car, Transportation/Car/Hybrid] UID:36080 Activity:high
2/6     Hey MOTD -- My car is going to die soon, and I was wondering if anyone
        has any suggestions for replacements.  My car is a 1998 ford taurus,
        24v Duratec engine.  It has good power, is very roomy, and was very
        reliable until it hit 100k miles.  I'm not married to another ford
        (or even to an american), but I can't really afford more than $30k
        (and 30 is really the upper end).  Ideally, I'd like something similar.
        \_ The Toyota Avalon is pretty nice.  280hp, roomy comparable to the
           ford, decent features, hovering right at the $30k mark.
        \_ Easy, get a Honda Accord or a Toyota Corolla. Relatively cheap,
           dependable, and if you get the better models it'll hold up its
           value. It should give you at least 10 years if not more.
           \_ If you don't want to buy a bland Accord or Camry perhaps
              you should consider a Subaru Legacy or Outback. Both would
              fit w/in your budget (the basic Legacy/Outback is btwn $21K
              and $25K, while the Legacy Turbo GT is btwn $26K and $30K).
              I currently own a 2003 Outback Wagon (basic, $22K in 2003)
              and I think that it is the best car I have ever owned.
              Some drawbacks of a Subaru are (1) the AWD decreases your
              gas mileage by 1 or 2 MPG over a non-AWD car such as a
              Camry, (2) the tires are more expensive to replace than
              on a Camry/Accord, (3) there aren't as many Subaru dealers
              as Honda/Toyota, and (4) there isn't a good way to listen
              to music from an iPod (no cassette player/line in).
              The Mazda 6 (as mentioned below) is another alternative,
              but I mainly chose the Outback over the 6 b/c the Outback
              had more interior room so I could carry more mtbs.
                \_ specs please. MPG, 0-60, HP.
                   \_ Readily available on the subaru website.   -OP
                   \_ the Accord beats Subaru on all 3 (MPG, speed, HP)
                      \_ This is true, but you should consider the
                         fact that the Subaru has AWD and can be
                         driven off road.
              \_ mtbs = mountain bikes? doesn't that muddy up the car?
                 what's wrong a rack? and why did you choose the outback
                 over the legacy? the outback has significantly worse brakes.
                 \_ I haven't had a big problem w/ mud. The car came w/
                    a big rubber mat that can be washed out. I considered
                    a roof rack but I decided that most of the time I
                    could just get by w/o it by sticking my bike inside.
                    a big rubber mat that can be washed out.
                    I don't normally need to carry more than one bike,
                    so I didn't want to invest in a rack. When I need
                    to take more than 1 bike, I try to borrow a rack
                    from a friend.
                    The main reason I chose the outback over the legacy
                    was that the outback had 0% financing (legacy was
                    2.9%) and there was a dealer incentive of $600 so
                    over 2 yrs the outback worked out cheaper.  The
                    outback also has slightly better ground clearance
                    and the dealer threw in the rdg for free which
                    helps if you want to drive it off road (which I
                    don't really do a lot of these days).
                    I didn't really know about the brakes when I
                    bought the car, so far I haven't noticed any
                    If I was buying today, I might still choose the
                    Outback b/c of the ground clearance but in all
                    other aspects the Legacy is preferable.
                    \_ Yeah I doubt the brake thing is that big a deal but
                       it was something my Dad considered when buying. The
                       Outback looks a lot flashier with the macho flared
                       fenders. I don't think most people really need
                       better ground clearance. I'm considering getting one
                       of the two myself. I like to be able to throw a bike
                       in the back of a car but I think I'd hesitate with
                       a nice carpeted trunk. I've used a truck a lot and
                       it always builds up dirt and mud back there. Maybe
                       if I got a tarp to cover everything back there... the
                       rubber mat thing I think only covers the very back.
        \_ Prius.
        \_ What about the Ford Five Hundred? It's supposed to be decent but
           boring, and the dealers will probably have to add incentives.
        \_ Does it have to be a brand new car? What's wrong with the
           current one? It will definitely cost less to fix the one you
           have and/or wait until it really dies. Camry, Altima, and Accord
           compete with the Taurus along with Mazda 6 and similar. All are
           under $30K. Personally, I'd think about buying a Lexus, even if
           it is a year old. If not that then how about an Avalon? I have
           firsthand experience with 2 Avalons and they are Lexus-lite.
           \_ Nah, it doesn't have to be brand new.  My current car might have
              a busted head gasket.  Cost to repair would exceed or equal the
              kelly bluebook value.
              \_ Yes, but still less than a new car. About $2K.
                 \_ Or, even better, seel the current jalopy to a junkyard
                    and buy another used card.!
                    \_ Yah, that's pretty much my plan;  I'm just polling
                    \_ Yah, that's pretty much my plan;  I'm just trolling
                       to see what motd people are interested in, or have
                       experience with.
        \_ Look buddy, $30K is a lot, do you really want to spend that
           much money on something that will depreciate 1/4-1/3 of its
           value the first year you buy it? Here is my recommendation.
           Buy a decent USED Japanese car from someone (Civic, Accord),
           and don't buy from dealers. You'll spend 1/2 of what you
           originally planned and can save the other 1/2 for something
           else nice, like kitchen/bathroom remodeling or save it for
           your kids' college tuition.
           Here is my second recommendation. If you MUST spend $30K,
           you can get a car that has enough room for fat asses like
           me (+200 pounds), has 255HP, ***37MPG***, and goes 0-60 in
           6 seconds. It is called the Honda Accord Hybrid.
           \_ "Nah, it doesn't have to be brand new."  and
              "Yah, that's pretty much my plan;".  Did you even read the
              thread, or are you just naturally this jerky?
           \_ Basically, the last sentence is the only relevant piece of
              information in your post for the OP's question.
           \_ there's something really really really wrong with putting 255HP
              in an oh-so-boring family sedan. It makes a lot of sense for a
              sportscar, but Honda Accord? 0-60 in 6 sec? It is just wrong.
         \_ What about Saturn? Any good? They have a neat little roadster
            coming out for $25K. Another option: Mini-Cooper.
            \_ Eh, neither is terribly roomy.  Check out the original post.
2005/2/5-7 [Transportation/Car] UID:36075 Activity:low
2/5     Can someone recommend me a good junkyard for Toyota parts?
        I have a 84 pickup I need to find some stuff for.  -maxmcc
        \_ There are a few pick-n-pull places. What are looking for?
            \_ Winding mechanism for driver's side window.
2005/2/3 [Transportation/Car, Transportation/Car/Hybrid] UID:36045 Activity:high
2/3     Can someone explain to me why no car mfgrs. produce a sports car
        with a turbodiesel?  I rode in a friend's A6 TDI, not a small auto,
        which went like shit off a shovel.  Just curious.  -John
        \_ Probably because not a lot of people like diesel, it's not even
           economical anymore. Plus a sports coup with a turbo diesel would
           probably not meet emmission standards, after all, diesel is
           dirtier than regular unleaded.
           \_ I think we've had this discussion before, about diesel vs. gas.
              We're not talking about a diesel tractor engine, but something
              like a CRD or TDI with particle burner, which runs very clean.
              As far as I can tell, the main differences between a sports car
              and small high-end coupes are the chassis, suspension, gearbox
              and maybe performance tweaks to the engine, but not the
              fundamental engine (i.e. where in between BMW 316 and M3 CSL
              does it become a "sports car"?)  Anyway, after some research I
              found the C30 AMG.  -John
              \_ I _have_ heard that acceleration is one of the disadvantages
                 of diesel engines, but I am not an engine expert by any means.
                   -- ilyas
              \_ Sure you can probably get diesel to be as clean as regular
                 unleaded. That's not really the point. The point is, why
                 bother when diesel is as expensive as gas for the end-user.
                 Plus, it would cost more to maintain since you'd have to
                 get special parts for it, etc. Diesel tanks also corrode
                 over time with mold/bacteria/etc. There are reasons why
                 diesel never became popular in the U.S. for consumer level
                 vehicles, and why it's still not necessarily as popular as
                 it could have been in Europe.
           \_ Provincial fool! You're talking to Eurojohn. Euros love diesel.
              Diesels tend to generate tons of torque but not too much HP.
              But gas engines still get better performance for a sports car.
              They can build the engine lighter and run higher rpms without
              blowing up. And they sound cooler. Sports cars don't need to
              pull stumps. A turbo gas engine of the same displacement would
              probably go like even faster shit off a faster shovel.
        \_ Related, are there any manufacturers besides VW selling TDIs in
           California?  I was very interested in one but I've nixed those plans
           on account of VW's quality problems.  TIA.
        \_ Heil Eurotrash John!
        \_ For one thing, diesel engines usually require more space to
           generate the same HP as regular engines. Secondly, new
           technologies such as the Accord Hybrid prove that motors
           in fact generate a lot of torque which really helps you
           get to red-line quickly even if your engine is starting
           from near-idle speed. The new Accord Hybrid engine is small,
           goes 0-60 in 6 seconds, is less than $30,000, and has 37MPG.
           I doubt conventional diesel technology has all the
           combinations of form size, torque, mileage, and price range
           offered by hybrid technologies.
2005/2/2 [Transportation/Car, Consumer/CellPhone] UID:36032 Activity:high
2/2     What we need is a universal docking station on cars for
        cellphones.  You get into your car and put the cellphone on
        the dock, then all calls will be put on the speaker and you
        talk through the in-car mic. What ya think? Any progress being
        made in this area? It can even be made automatic...
        \_ As for the data connection, the standard is the Bluetooth headset
           protocol.  Good luck getting a standard for a physical holder.  Cell
           phones have way too much variability in size/shape for that to be
           \_ not to mention the business reasons why this is doomed.  Vendors
              make a fortune selling add-ons for their particular brands of
              phone.  They want you to buy a new set every time you get a new
              phone too.   Good luck getting them to give up that business to
              follow some standard.
              \_ But eventually all these will settle down to a
                 standard.  Do you still remember the time each cell
                 phone has its own proprietary headphone connector?
                 Once we have laws banning cellphone use in cars, you
                 bet some company will come up with something.
                 \_ They still have proprietary connectors.  I can see everyone
                    supporting bluetooth, but when each phone comes with a
                    charger, there's not much incentive for the manufacturer to
                    standardize on a charger interface.  Add to that the fact
                    that size and styling are competitive differentiators and
                    so manufactureres have a lot to lose by standardizing on
                    one physical shape for a dock.  I think the best you can
                    do would be a velcro strap on dashboards.
                    \_ The point is not the dock or the charging interface, it's
                       the ability to automatically route the call to the 'car',
                       however its done, wirelessly or something, doesn't matter.
                       and similarily the ability to route calls to land lines
                       when you are home automatically. You bet there will be a
                       surge of interest when all the latest data on cellphone
                       brain cancer pops up in a few years.
                       \_ A lot of phones already have something like this,
                          it's called a *speakerphone*.  I set my cell phone
                          in a cupholder, and if I get a call I can reach down
                          and push the speakerphone button, then be hands-free
                          for the conversation.
2005/2/1 [Transportation/Car] UID:36009 Activity:very high
1/31    I need a compact-to-medium sized hatchback car to haul stuff around
        like computer equipment/hardware(as in home depot type stuff). I
        was thinking of getting one of those cheapie Toyota Scions since
        I figure it'll get dinged up over time. Any recommendations? I
        also have seen a Civic that's hatchback. It needs to be automatic
        since not everyone in my family can drive stick (and it'll be used
        by everyone in the family).
        \_ what's your price range?
           \_ I was thinking under 20, but I can go over if people think
              that I should get something better. Again, it's going to be
              a knock-around car. I'd like to see if anyone has experience
              with vehicles like these, are they reliable, etc.
              \_ you can get an Accord DX, auto (no stick) for $16500 at
                 typical dealers in Los Angeles, with just tax and $500
                 commission to the dealer (just tell them this upfront) it'll
                 come out to be about $19000. Or you can get an Accord LX
                 fully loaded for $19000, plus tax + commission it'll be
                 about $21000. My sister's happy with her new Accord LX, and
                 at that price you get a lot of room and reliability and
                 everything else except the sexiness and the speed of BMWs.
                 But if you're serious about saving $, I wouldn't buy it in
                 Northern Cal.
        \_ Scion or Element or Civic Hatchback are good.
        \_ Don't forget the VW Golf.
        \_ Buy used.
        \_ Toyota Matrix.  Ugly, but has a very practical use of space for
           its size.  The flat-folding rugged bed is keen.
2005/1/29-30 [Transportation/Car] UID:35970 Activity:moderate
1/29    I hear people saying things like "Arco is bad, Chevron is good,
        Mobile gives you slightly better mileage" etc etc etc. Are there
        actual studies on the different brands? Like % of impurity,
        octane deviation, % of additives that differentiate one brand
        with another, etc?
        \_ the only difference in brands of gasoline is the additives the
           particular companies put in their fuel before sending it out to
           the station.  hell, they'll even sell to each other to cover for
           local shortages.
        \_ Mobil, not Mobile
2005/1/28-31 [Transportation/Car] UID:35965 Activity:high
1/30    (repost) Why do guys with pickups or trucks leave the engines idling
        at the gas station even though there are always signs stating
        "NO SMOKING -- TURN OFF ENGINE"? Is it a "hey I'm a macho dude
        with a studly diesel" thing or is there a real reason for them to
        do this?
        \_ If you live in a cold enough climate you can't turn the engine
           off in any location where you can't plug in your block heater.
           Maybe some of these people picked up the habbit in places like
           that.  North Dakota is like this in the winter.
           \_ This is in California.
           \_ Even after turning it off for a few minutes only?  An engine
              doesn't get cold that fast.
        \_ my guess is that when they were young they saw their mommies
           or daddies doing the same thing because old engines were hard
           to start once they're turned off. But that is just my guess. Why
           do you care? Sheesh.
                \_ I want to know WHY people do this.  This is not the most
                   inane question ever posted to the motd by far.
                   \_ Because they're lazy fucks, because they can, because
                      they think it's macho/cool/whatever.  Same reasons why
                      people don't fasten their seatbelts, dawdle in the fast
                      lane and don't indicate when passing.  Does it bug you?
                      Then tell them.  -John
                        \_ If there was a real reason to do it, then I wanted
                           to know what that was.
                           \_ See first reply.  Big (aka bigrig) trucks are
                              a pain to start, and some older engines always
                              required some warmup time.  Now it's pointless.
                                \_ Hey, a resemblance to a real answer!
        \_ Since nobody asked it, I will: is there still any reason (other
           than not to waste gas/pollute) to turn off engine at a gas station?
           I have never heard of a gas station blown up by some redneck
           republican truck idling its engine.
           \_ just a guess, leaving your engine running means your electrical
              system is on also
             \_ hence you can continue listening to your fav country music
             \_ or keep your AC on
        \_ us guys?? how many CSUA types have you seen doing this?
           \_ More to the point, how many CSUA types who drive pickups have you
              seen doing this? -- ulysses (beat-up white 89 Ford Ranger)
2005/1/27 [Transportation/Car, Transportation/Car/RoadHogs] UID:35928 Activity:very high
1/27    How did a compact SUV, a relatively light object compared to a
        locomotive, cause the train to derail in the LA incident?  I've seen
        some TV documentary where a train hits a school bus.  The school bus is
        cut into two but the train keeps going.
         \_ I think i read that the suicider-suv-er drove his
            car a little farther down on the track and 'parked', so
            the locked wheels combined with the railroad ties
             caused the car to become a very Large Immoveable
             Object.  this is a little different than just
              being in theway at the crossing point.
        \_ I have the same question. Remember the PSA poster saying: "When
           there is a tie at the railroad crossing between a car and a train,
           the train wins."
        \_ Maybe the train here was going faster than the documentary one.
           maybe the track curved at that spot.  who knows..  Wait for a
           TSA report.
        \_ I heard that the engine (the heavy car) was in the rear and the
           the passenger cars in the front are relatively lightweight.
           \_ This is correct: (LATimes, brew your own
           \_ Great Fucking Design!
              \_ Yes, it is a great design. This is a train. It is not an
                 automobile so that the individual cars are not easily
                 moved out of position relative to one another. Ergo
                 engines since time immemorial have always been positioned
                 at the ends to either push or pull the train. Trains are
                 also not designed to break quickly, nor can they turn,
                 reverse directions, or go over terrain which has no
                 track upon it easily. If you ever had a train set or utilized
                 the common sense part of your brain you'd realize this.
                 In addition, if you're thinking about "writing to your
                 representative" to improve train safety because you somehow
                 believe that trains are unsafe, simply lookup the statistic
                 on how many people die from train wrecks per annum vs.
                 how many die from car accidents. If you argue that fewer
                 individual use trains then you may go ahead and utilize the
                 resources on BART and other light rail systems.
                 \_ Holy shit.  A williamc post that isn't *completely* moronic.
                    Of course, you have the usual drooling ad homonem, but
                    this is still a potential precedent setter.
                 \_ He's talking about putting the engine in back.  Pushing
                    a bunch of cars is going to be less stable than pulling
                    them if the front one derails or hits something, and will
                    cause more damage as the whole thing is far more likely
                    to jackknife, especially if there's a locomotive in back
                    that keeps pushing for a few moments.  This is not best
                    practice, and while you're right, trains can't just turn,
                    most rail lines use switching yards to move a second
                    engine to the other end of the train when it has to
                    reverse direction (you generally don't just change the
                    direction of a train from pull to push away from terminal
                    stations, which should have other engines standing by for
                    just this purpose.  As for comparative statistics, they
                    are irrelevant if an accident is avoidable--people still
                    die unnecessarily.  -John
                 \- What if someone hijacked a train and crashed it into the
                    White House?
                    \_ There are train tracks going to the White House?
                       \- They could build underground tracks to the White
                          House as an insider job.
                          \_ ali, sign your posts.
                             \- bigup yourself --alig
                    \_ What if someone built a trebuchet and fired it at the
                       White House?
                       \_ - danh
                    \_ What if someone took a high powered laser and beamed
                       it into Bush's eyeball, from far away, at a speech?
        \_ I wonder how must it would cost to put a simple radar like devie
           in the front of the train, to activate emergency breaks or sound
           alarms if it detects something directly ahead...
           \_ Not expensive, but futile.  Trains are not easy to stop.
              \_ But it doesn't sound like they even tried to stop, the
                 light passenger cars hit the SUV at full speed and derailed.
                 \_ The paper says that conditions were such that the driver
                    likely didn't see the car until s/he was right on top of
           \_ Doesn't work on curves.
              \_ Oh no, not the CURVES, I LOVE THE CURVES!!
              \_ Of course not, no sodans can handle the curves.
                 \_ "I want the curves!"
                    "You can't handle the curves!"
                    \_ Hahahaha, oh we are such dorks, damn I love the csua.
                 \_ All sodans suffer from premature ejaculation?
                    \_ Oh that's sick, go back to your hole..
        \_ And in Al Jazeera, they say "Jeep Cherokee, your new terror weapon"
        \_ The SUV body crumpled, but the SUV's engine block caused the train
           to derail.  It's in one of the LA Times articles.
        \_ Crap on the rails is always a problem.  In Holland, lots of trains
           are apperantly late now because teens are finding it cool to put
           stuff on the rails and watch the trains hit it.  There is always
           a chance that a large heavy piece of something will make a train
2005/1/22-24 [Transportation/Car] UID:35858 Activity:kinda low
1/22    I went and test drove a civic and corolla today and found both
        to be approximately equivalent (except that the corolla seemed
        to be a bit "more" car, ie not so bare-boned). So I am still
        on the fence there. But I then noticed one of the new Scion tC's on
        the lot, and it looks very nice. Does anyone have any advice
        on Scions, negative or positive? Thanks. -poster from below
        \_ I will weigh in.  I looked at both corolla and civic, and
           the corolla seemed to have more power with equivalent mileage,
           and the AC worked better.
2005/1/21-22 [Transportation/Car, Transportation/Car/Hybrid] UID:35854 Activity:high
1/21    Which would you choose for a low-price car (new or used):
        Honda Civic, Nissan Altima, or Toyota Corolla? My priorities
        are low price, reliability, and low maintenance costs.
        \_ I have a 1990 Civic Si.  I bought a Mazda Protege5 about a year
           ago.  Civic is definitely better architected, but Mazda is
           better built.  It's much easier to get "deals" from Mazda
           dealer than from Honda dealer, and rebates are much better, too,
           for non-Honda.  It's a close call.  Try different cars and NEVER
           be hasty.
        \_ Honda Civic. For about the same price maybe even Acura RSX
           (souped up Civic).
           \_ RSX is considerably more.  But I'd second the Civic notion,
              although I'd probably check out the Mazda 3:  It's got a
              fair bit more Zoom Zoom.
              \_ RSX is $20-23K. Civic is $13-21K. Can be the same price
                 (or close) unless you want a stripped down Civic. Mazda 3
                 seems good. My brother's gf had one for a few months
                 before getting a truck instead. OP didn't ask about it.
        \_ I have a Civic Hybrid and a 50cc scooter. I love the environment.
        \_ I've owned to Corollas ('96, '02) and they are great. I've
           never had any problems with either one. The '02 is actually
           quite large and still gets very good gas mileage. The routine
           maintenance recommended by Toyota is quite cheap. My State
           Farm insurance dude told me that the rates for the Corolla
           are lower than for a Civic by $20-$50/six months.
           If your are looking for something a bit sportier than a
           Corolla and you don't want to go the C1V1C TYP3 R1C3R
           route, you could take a look at the Mazda 3 or a Impreza
           2.5RS (non-WRX version, still get a very nice AWD system
           for just a bit more money).

i/21    Another related article, especially for the "Useful Idiot" lefty
        on the MOTD who regurgitates everything that Mike Moore says:
        \_ "Let's start with a test: Do you have any opinions that you
           would be reluctant to express in front of a group of your
           peers?  If the answer is no, you might want to stop and
           think about that. If everything you believe is something
           you're supposed to believe, could that possibly be a
           coincidence? Odds are it isn't. Odds are you just think whatever
           you're told."
           He definitely has the Limbaugh trick of starting with a ridiculous
           assertion down.  -tom
           \_ So, why would this be a ridiculous assertion? Do you actually
              believe whatever you are taught to believe? If so, then you
              really do have a small mind, which many on the MOTD have already
              suspected of you. Of course, your failure to understand and
              participate in real discourse is legend. Anyway, the article is
              a-political. It merely points out the fact that people like you
              are merely monkeys trained to think the way you do and have
              never had a real independent assertion in your life.
              \_ bad troll, no cookie.  -tom
           \_ I don't know if Limbaugh has the monopoly on that.  But it's the
              false dichotomy that amuses me.  Another reason you might not
              have a problem stating what you believe is that you're
              self-confident (that is, you know people will disagree, but you
              don't care).
              \_ or you're so immersed in a culture of people who hold unusual
                 opinions, that everyone dissagrees all the time and thinks
                 this is normal.  Everyone I work with has several outlandish
                 opinions that everyone else thinks are crazy, and no one
                 cares.  Of course, in the article, he does  mention scientists,
                 but for some reason assumes that none of his readers are
              \_ So in other words you are a coward.
           \_ What is an example of such an opinion? That he likes little boys?
2005/1/19-20 [Transportation/Car, Transportation/Car/Hybrid] UID:35800 Activity:moderate
1.19    Anybody ever used one of those auto auctions in the bay area?
        Good experience?  What sort of admission fee did you pay to get in?
        \_ I've been to the alameda county auction in Dublin.  I didn't
           buy anything, I just went to see what it was like.  Admission
           was free.  You could buy a print out of the schedule (something
           like 300 cars), or print one out yourself for free online.
           There were a lot of people taking detailed notes.  It looked to
           me like a very good deal.  Some nice cars went VERY cheap.
           Addendum: I think if you actually wanted to bid on a car you
           had to register, and there was a fee for that. ($15?)  That
           page also describes the extra fees you have to pay when you
           \_ How can you tell what kind of condition the cars are in
              without taking it to a shop?  You can tell the condition of
              the chasis but how would you know about the transmission or
              if there is a hole in the catalytic converter etc.  Are the
              prices things went for available anywhere?
              \_ You can go ahead of time (thursday?) and check the cars
                 out yourself.  I didn't, so I don't know how through an
                 inspection you're allowed.  I don't think the prices are
                 posted anywhere, people were there writing them down for
                 their own reference.  I can tell you 2002 BMWs went for
                 about $15,000, and a Kia with 60,000 miles left on the
                 warranty (transferable) went for < 3000. -jrleek
              \_ I never went to one myself, but a coworker did. His
                 friend bought a car there which turned out to be a great
                 buy BUT it was out of gasoline and the battery was dead.
                 Getting it home was a lot of fun, since the gas cap had
                 a key which was missing, too. People who go often know to
                 bring a charger, gas, and some tools. They let you start
                 the cars, but you cannot drive them. Caveat emptor.
2005/1/19 [Transportation/Car, Transportation/Airplane] UID:35783 Activity:insanely high
1/18    Regarding the A380 airbus/French engineering troll... if I were to
        pick machineries based on reliability, branding, and engineering
        history, I'd pick in the following order:
                Japanese > German > American > French
        It's too bad that Germans and Japanese don't make aircrafts.
        They really know how to make machineries that are efficient
        and/or high performance. As for French engineering, when was
        the last time they built anything reliable and/or worth driving?
        Peugeot? Renault? No thanks.
        \_ Honda has always wanted to get into the aircraft engine
           business, and it has started doing it already:
                \_ I just saw the Honda Jet video, it is AWSOME!!! I LOVE IT.
        \_ German machines tend to be slick but fragile.
           \_ and I suppose Americans are much better? Say you got a 100 mile
              drive to a wedding/job interview, would you drive a 20 year old
              Pontiac or a 20 year old Mercedes?
              \_ You do know that JD Powers polled 293 problems per 100
                 Pontiacs after 3 years ownership, and 318 problems per
                 100 Mercedes Benzs in the same period.  The MB has fewer
                 initial quality problems (132 per 100 vehicls) than the
                 Pontiac (142 per 100), but the Caddy, which is more
                 comparable to the MB anyway, has just 103 initiali problems
                 per 100 vehicles, and just 209 after 3 years.  To back it
                 up with personal experience, the 2 MBs I've owned (ML320
                 and E430) are pure crap with electrical and vibrational
                 problems too numerous to list.
                 \_ The previous poster said 20-year-old Pontiacs and Mercedes,
                    not late model year ones.  20-year-old Mercedes are much
                    more likely to keep on running today than 20-year-old
                    Pontiacs.  I agree that today's low-end Mercedes are craps
                    for their price tags.
                    \_ Yes.  But I fail to see how the reliability of 20-
                       year-old cars applies to current German ability to
                       design and manufacture reliable machinary.  Low end?
                       A friend's SL500 dash lit up like a Christmas tree 2
                       hours after he picked up the car from the dealership.
                       "Dude, your check engine light is on... Now the empty
                       gas tank light too... What does *that* other light
                       mean?..." I had a great laugh over it and he was
                       pissed at me for a couple months.  Of course, he also
                       has the Land Rover that has never ran for 3 months in
                       a row, including the time when it would not go into
                       reverse, which made leaving a parking spot somewhat
                       \_ Mercedes has ran their reliability into the ground.
                          Who knows why this is, although I've seen (somewhat
                          troll-ish) claims that it is related to their move
                          into East German factories.  BMW seems to have
                          kept up to speed, however.  One factor here is that
                          car reliability is much higher than it has been in
                          the past, and the differences between makes is not
                          nearly as great as it used to be.  Car makers have to
                          work very hard to keep up their standards, and of
                          couse Lexus sets a very high bar indeed (too bad they
                          make such boring cars).
                          \_ As a BMW owner I can call their cars
                             'adequate'. The engine itself will run
                             forever, but everything else (including
                             transmission) is delicate. My BMW has been in
                             the shop more times in 3 years than my Honda
                             has in 10 years. I prefer the BMW because of
                             performance and styling, but that's it.
                          \_ The decline of Mercedes started with its merger
                             with Chrysler.
                             \_ But interestingly, Chrysler has had something
                                a comeback since the merger...
                                \_ which means, crappiness and quality are both
                                   conserved, and that Chrysler owns Mercedes,
                                   not the other way around?
           \_ Concur. Also, the Swedes are good engineers. What about the
              British? Certainly they made good planes in WW II.
              \_ Britian used to make passenger planes, but a very famous
                 set of myserious crashes in, the 50's (I think) ruined
                 them.  It turned out the metal they had used would
                 fatigue and eventually break off in flight.  They did,
                 however, figure out the cause via some very impressive
                 detective work, so they at once lost their reputation
                 fro building aircraft but gained one for good aviational
                 detecive work. I think the plane was called "the Comet."
                 Addendum: Here we go:
                 \_ Scotlandyard?
              \_ The Spitfire was the best fighter....
              \_ Our Boeing 747s use Rolls Royce engines.
           \_ Really?  I heard Volkswagon engines lasts a long time.
              \_ Volkwagen is near the bottom in reliability. German cars
                 are high performance, but break easily. Japanese are
                 durable. American cars are... uh...?
                 \_ Cheap. The world you are looking for is cheap.
        \_ German engineering is the best! Panzer >>> Shermans. V1/V2 rockets were
           state of the art. Their ME262 fighters flew faster than any WW2
           prop fighters. And they have the Autobahn, which tests German cars
           under great stress. I love German engineering. ALL HEIL GERMAN!!!!!
        \_ Airbus > Boeing (not a troll)
           \_ Yeah, Boeing never crashes their demo planes into the trees
              due to faulty design.  Airbus = r0x0rz!
           \_ The Airbus was foolproof. Basically, if you are 50 feet from the
              ground the computer assumes you're landing and takes over the
              throttle/controls and guides you to a gentle landing. During the
              Airbus demo, the pilots were instructed to make a low level pass
              from the ground (common aviation demo), and when they flew it,
              they flew 30 feet from the ground. The computer thought they're
              landing, and took over. So yes the Airbus is foolproof, the
              pilots are not.  P.S. All Boeings have an option to turn off
              fly-by-wire. None of the Airbuses have that option.
              \_ If you make something foolproof you will breed greater fools.
              \_ Trusting computers that completely is blatantly stupid.
                 \_ That is true, but trusting humans completely is even worse.
                    cf. the collison in Switzerland.  It really comes down to
                    a choice between trusting the people who designed the
                    plane/machine (ppl like you) and those who pilot them.
                    Contrary to popular myth, the latter are not that reliable.
                    Contrary to popular myth, the latter are not more reliable.
              \_ That's hilarious!  URL please?
        \_ as an engineer, I have reservations on the latest and greatest
           technology. First of all, the A380 is GIGANTIC so it requires
           longer runways and more complex systems to accomodate for its
           size. If there's a problem, you can only land in certain
           airports so if you have to reroute or land due to weather or
           mechanical problems, you're screwed. Secondly, big systems have
           more points of failure, and even when you add redundancy, they
           crash more catastrophically than smaller systems due to bigger
           mass and less available land (you can land small planes in a
           dessert, but with A380 you'll generate so much spark/fire and
           leakeage the chance of surviving is minimal.)
           Thirdly, big systems tend to be complex than smaller ones and
           in general complexity introduces new and unforeseen problems.
           Lastly, I just don't know enough about French engineering to
           really trust the A380.
           \_ Must be a really small plane or a really big dessert.
              \_ I prefer fudge sundaes, myself.
           \_ I knew people who adored American engineering, boarded a Boeing
              or MD, and migrated to the big aquarium.
2005/1/13-14 [Transportation/Car] UID:35689 Activity:high
1/12    How much should I be worried if a used car with fairly low miles
        (say 30-60k) has had the clutch replaced?  Does that mean it was driven
        hard, or is plagued with mechanical problems, or just bad luck?
        \_ I'm no expert but I'd guess it was driven hard or by someone who
           didn't know how to properly use it. I don't see how it would
           indicate other particular problems, unless by inference you might
           suspect things such as general maintenance. What kind of car? Maybe
           somebody was drag racing it or something.
        \_ lots of people have no idea how to drive a stick, and yet continue
           to do so.  what kind of seller?  how many owners?  if it is newish
           (not cheap) i'd definitely get a qualified mechanic to inspect it
           prior to purchase.  pay for it yourself if serious, and run the
           other way if the owner refuses or won't let you choose the shop.
           \_ not to be a biggot or anything but was it driven by a straight
              guy, a straight gal, a lesbian, or a gay? And which ethnic/age?
              \_ He was driven straight by a lesbian gay?  err, what?
              \_ I don't think I am a bigot for thinking that a 20-something
                 guy, family with teenage drivers, or obviously type-A
                 seller may be worse for a car.
        \_ I got a Celica with 15k used, by 45k the clutch went out.  The
           previous owner was a female, most likely her 1st stick and wore
           heals.  Also from NY moving to hilly SF, where sticks can go out
           very quickly if you don't know what your doing on the hills.
           Anyways, after I replaced it at Clutchmart (Ashby) with a generic
           clutch I'm now at 140k with still no problems.  I know how to
           drive a stick.
        \_ My '96 Cherokee is now at 97k.  Still has original clutch.  First
        \_ '98 cherokee, 138k miles, original clutch.
        \_ So I go through clutches pretty quickly since moving to San
           Francisco. What else is there to do on a steep hill, other than
           slip your clutch massively or use the emergency brake?
           \_ I think the emergency brake is preferred to massive clutch abuse.
              At least not sitting there slipping it for a stoplight or sth.
           \_ A good teacher and some patience would show you a third way.
              Even in S.F. you should be able to go from brake to throttle
              and clutch w/o much slippage and with only about 6-12 inches
              of backwards roll.  E-brake is a nice crutch, particularly
              when parallel parking or otherwise working in tight spaces.
              What most people are not taught is that your foot should go
              from clutch floored to foot OFF pedal in a smooth motion
              lasting at most 1-2 seconds (2 is too high, really).
        \_ like above, my dad had an '82 toyota pickup w/ original clutch
           to 170k miles including teaching three sons to drive on it.
2004/12/30 [Transportation/Car] UID:35493 Activity:kinda low
        ZipCars, totally cool. We need it in CA.
        \_ Anyone here had any luck with the CityShare VW Bugs in Oakland?
           There's one parked in the parking lot near the Grand Lake Theater.
           Whoops, it's apparently called CityCarShare:
        \_ Price is too high, average of what, 9 bucks per hour? Say you
           do an average of 2 hours a day driving, that's 18 bucks a day,
           that's like $400 a month. Only useful if you live in the city.
           For $400 a month you can buy/lease a pretty nice car. The only
           rationale is if you don't have a parking space in the city.
           Then it makes sense. Most of the commuters I know, though,
           have company parking spaces or just take BART...
           \_ City CarShare isn't designed for people who drive 2 hours a
              day, it's designed for occasional drivers.  -tom
              \_ Like who? People who travel into the city? Wouldn't they
                 just usually rent a car or just take taxis? If you travel
                 only occassionally why don't you just call a cab? The
                 ZipCars appear to require a deposit and a background check,
                 which would signal a long commitment. I just have trouble
                 with their business model.
                 \_ Consider someone who lives near public transportation
                    and wants to do home improvements.  Or is looking for a
                    job.  Or is a performer who has infrequent gigs out of
                    town.  There are a large number of niches for whom this
                    works out just fine.
                 \_ dude, chill! Point 1-- if you build it, suckers will come.
                    Point 2-- car rental is usually a whole day, and it's a
                    hastle since you need to go to the specific car rental
                    place, limited by time and unpredictable availability.
                    ZipCar interface lets you get what you reserve. Point 3--
                    cab is a good idea for really short hops but at some point
                    it gets more expensive, and besides, not everyone wants
                    to pay tips to the driver.
                 \_ CarShare is non-profit; we'll see how ZipCar fares...
2004/12/28-29 [Transportation/Car] UID:35462 Activity:moderate
12/28   Trip Report:  Hit I-5 (from 78, in Oceanside) at 9:40, and traffic
        was a dream.  Took 5 to 55, visited friends in Santa Ana, smoothest
        drive you could ask for.  Got back on 55 around 1:50, transferred to
        5 North, lulled by its unoccupied nature.  Fool.  Brothers and
        sisters, I-5 may look like an asphalt ribbon on the gem that is the
        city of Los Angeles, but do not be fooled; it is a trap, and all of
        its promises of smooth sailing turn to cramps and inane blocks of stop
        and go.  Hit four pockets of this crap.  Still somehow managed to make
        it to 210 by 3:30, then got socked in by warnings of a two-hour delay
        and a horrendous accident 17 miles ahead.  Grumbled and cursed, then
        counted blessings as we were passed by the Coroner's car on the left
        shoulder.  Two hours later passed two semis facing the wrong way, one
        with a cab that had obviously been through a roll, much to the
        physical detriment of its driver.  Torrential rain and heavy winds all
        the way to the Grapevine, followed by fog, sand/dirt, and typhoon-
        force winds up to Avenal, followed by torrential rain and heavy winds
        all the way to Livermore; traffic on the 5 after the Grapevine was
        mostly clear, however.  Longest trip north I've ever had; I figure we
        were on the road nearly 12 hours total.
        \_ Sorry. -- ilyas
        \_ Sorry.  You know, I wasn't kidding about staying off the freeways.
           These days, if I can get to a known destination on city streets,
           I do so.  It's faster on average. -- ilyas
        \_ Damn those people who die in accidents and make everyone else late.
           Traffic needs more fault tolerance.
           \_ Read more closely.  We were properly chastised just by seeing
              the Coroner's car go by.
              \_ I know... I was making a semi-serious comment.
2004/12/21-22 [Transportation/Car] UID:35388 Activity:high
12/21   What exactly does it mean these days to say a certain car
        is American or Japanese or German or anything, seeing how most/all
        cars are built in another country (e.g. Mexico)? Does it simply
        mean that the engineers/designers are from that country or what?
        \_ No they aren't. A large amount of American cars are made in
           the US (Ford and many GM brands). Many German cars are made
           in either Germany or another Euro country. Even some Japanese
           cars are made in the US. All (100%) Toyota Corolla and Tacoma
           trucks are made in Fremont. Even the ones shipped to Japan
           and other worldwide buyers.
           \_ Subaru also manufactures many of its cars in the US (Indiana).
        \_ Yes, it means the engineers and management are from that country.
           Almost all of the designers are from the USA. BMW builds cars
           in South Africa and the US, but they are German cars built
           by a German company to German specifications.
           \_ so do American cars use metric measurements, with metric
              bolt (17mm, 19mm, etc) vs. 3/8", 1/2" bolts? I know my Kawasaki
              Ninja uses the metric system.
              \_ No, American cars use English measurements. Duh!
                 \_ And the English use...
                 \_ Actually American cars use a combination of both
                    (ex. 5 Liter V8) as do British cars.
                    \_ The 5 Liter V8 is also called a 350; there's nothing
                       inherently metric about it, that's just a way of
                       referring to the displacement.  -tom
                        \_ Right, it doesn't matter until things don't fit/
                           work together.  Why oh why the US hasn't switched
                           over ... "If it ain't broke, don't fit it" ... but
                           it is broken!
                           \_ I think it's totally stupid that we're not using
                              metric units, but you can't use the way
                              displacement is reported as an argument.
                              Everything fits into a tub of water.  -tom
                           \_ it's kind of hard to get a feeling of
                              a car's power in terms of Kilowatts and torques
                              in Newton/meter :p
                              \_ It's Newton-meter.
                        \_ That was just an example. Often the window
                           thickness is specified in mm, the radiator
                           capacity in liters, &c.
                           \_ The nuts and bolts are all (or almost all)
                              English-sized. This is what matters.
2004/12/21 [Transportation/Car] UID:35378 Activity:high
12/21   motd LAliens, where are the huge traffic hotspots in LA?  I'm driving
        from San Diego to Santa Ana, and I want to avoid getting stuck in the
        I-5 parking lot.
        \_ there are no easy way.  You are stuck with 405, your best bet is
           get onto 5 then 55 and get off near 22.  Don't get *ONTO* 22, it
           will kill you.  Get off 55 and take local streets.
        \_ Avoid the freeways.  It's Christmas.  You are fucked, my friend.
             -- ilyas
           \_ Um, thanks, but subhelpful.  Is it faster to take 5 to 55 or
              go 5 to 405 to 55?
              \_ Honestly, it's all bad.  What do you want me to say?  There
                 is no solution. -- ilyas
              \_ never, never, NEVER go on the 405. ever.
                \_ or if you do, check sigalert. unless it's ALL green
                   don't go on it.
                 \_ Specifically, don't go from OC->LA between 7-10am
                    Don't go from LA->OC between 4pm-7pm.
              \_ You forgot to prepend "the" to all the freeway numbers.
           \_ why do you hate LA? Why don't you move out of LA if you hate
              it so much? Have you tried applying to MIT and Stanford?
              \_ Why do you hate America? -- ilyas
                 \_ It's one thing to be a libertarian who wants to cut all
                    government programs yet lives off of government money,
                    and to hate liberals but live and live in one of the most
                    liberal places in America, and to hate California but
                    live off of their public education system, and to hate
                    SoCal, but live right in its heart, but DO WE HAVE TO
                    FUCKING HEAR ABOUT IT ALL THE TIME??????!!! Seriously,
                    buy a lot of automatic rifles, move to Idaho and start
                    your own cash-only business and get it over with.
                    \_ You must lose a lot of sleep over reaping the benefits
                       from all those broken treaties with the Indians, which
                       you surely strongly disagree with.  You should move to
                       Europe... wait you can't do that, it's build on
                       past and present injustice too.  I think moving to Mars
                       and starting fresh may be the only answer for you.
                         -- ilyas
                       \_ Well, that or asking you to stop whining incessantly.
                          \_ Dude.  I told him LA freeways are bad around
                             Christmas.  Which they are.  It ain't whining,
                             it's the truth.  Get head out of ass. -- ilyas
        \_ Just check at the times you'll be driving.
           You'll be fine if you come between 11am and 3pm, or after 8pm.
           \_ This is a big help, thank you. -op
              \_ op, would you mind posting your driving experiences later?
                 I am curious. -- ilyas
                 \_ Will do.  Look for it on Monday evening or Tuesday.
2004/12/20 [Transportation/Car] UID:35365 Activity:very high
12/20   Damn, the older I've become, the more I find young and pretty
        girls irresistible. I don't remember I was like this when I
        was at Berkeley. Is this generally true for man as we get
        older? How do I overcome my shallowness?
        \_ When I was in my teens, I found girls in their early twenties most
           attractive.  Now I'm in my thirties, and I still find girls in their
           early twenties most attractive.
           \- same here.
        \_ YMMV. I'm 35, and my tastes have aged with me; in fact, when I see
           early 20s, I can't help thinking of them as just older teens, and
           that's just not attractive.
           \_ My tastes have aged too, but not as fast as my body.
              \_ I'd just like to say for the record that I know some
                 absolutely stunning 35 y.o.s.
                    \_ NSFW (obviously)
                 \_ Would you rather have a new Civic or an older Porsche?
                    I realize a new Porsche is the best, but this is the
                    CSUA and that's not an option.
                    \_ The question is how do I convince myself that
                       what I really need is a 'family car' like the
                       Camry or an Accord? Sure it don't drive like a
                       Porshe, but you get the 'bang for your buck'
                       and it's not 'high maintenance'. I know it's the
                       right car for me, but everytime I saw a new 'porshe',
                       my blood boils and I just so much want to hold one
                       in my, I mean, drive it... It's my shallowness that
                       is preventing me from buying any car and thus getting
        \_ Why should you try and overcome it? Is it causing your problems?
                       \_ hmmm. When I was a kid, I hated cars and believed
                          that my BMX was the best way to get around, when
                          I was in my teens I really hated cars, and thought
                          my skateboard was the only decent way to get around,
                          and in my early and mid 20's I really really hated
                          cars and felt my roller blades were the best way to
                          get around.  Now I'm in my late 20's and I really
                          really really hate cars and think my mountain bike
                          is the best way to get around.  I figure in my 30's
                          I might work my way up to really really really really
                          hating cars and get a road bike.
                          \_ You're a inconsiderate weirdo judging
                             by the following post.
                             \_ You are correct on both counts.  Do you have
                                a point?
                          \_ Thanks for stomping on my comment asshole.
                       \_ Look, just get the new Porsche and enjoy yourself.
                          I don't see what the problem is. Unless you can't
                          ahem "afford" the Porsche, then you just have the
                          adolescent problem of wanting what you can't have.
                          I dated a 19 year old when I was 34 and enjoyed it,
                          but finally got tired of the drama and settled down
                          with a nice 31 year old UC grad.
                       \_ If you can't ahum "afford" a Porshe, maybe
                          you should consider "renting" one.
        \_ Why should you try and overcome it? Is it causing you problems?
        \_ Stop looking at so much porn.  No, really.  I'm serious.
           \_ You know, I think you may be onto something here.
        \_ I am happy!  Cause I've found my dream girl!  She's going to be
           27 on 1/7.  She's such a kind and considerate person.  Everyone
           loves her.  Be happy for me, soda Brothers!  I've prayed, and
           God sent an Angel!  I cannot fathom his grace!  I shall live in
           the Lord's temple for all the days of my life!
           \_ can i get my own god planet too? - danh
           \_ are you a Republican? Conservative? Religious?
              \_ No, I am not a Republican.
           \_ i'm glad waner found a nice girl instead of turning
              into the csua's version of scott peterson.
           \_ I am happy for you, even though I think you are a freak.
              Have you set a wedding day??
              \_ Haven't reached that stage yet, unfortunately.
                 Just hanging out daily for 4 months.  Many tests
                 ahead, but I am going all out, and even if I crash and burn
                 like a flaming wreck, I will have no regrets.  She's an
                 inspiration, and already helped me renew and deepen my
                 relationship with the Lord.  It would be a such a grace, and
                 such joy to be able to serve the Lord with her.  God's gift
                 is truly much better than what I have prayed for or
                 imagined!  I will love and cherish her all my life.
                 \_ OMG, you are under/around 28 years old right? Yeah, around age
                 \_ OMG, you are under/around 28 years old right? Yeah, around
                    28, you'll finally see the light. Right now you are just
                    blinded by the light.
                 \_ Just be sure you don't let her see you writing crap
                    like this or it will be all over and she'll be humping
                    a black sumo tattoo artist before deciding to settle
                    down. It's not that you are boring or deluded, but
                    that you are placing her on a pedestal. Women hate
                    that, in spite of what they say. Respect, yes. Pedestal,
                    no. Factor in religion and you are toast.
                    \_ heh heh.  Thanks for your advice.  Don't worry,
                       I know how to be a bad boy.
           \_ And you are, 22?
2004/12/20 [Transportation/Car] UID:35363 Activity:nil
12/19   Major, minor, and intermediate service for cars-- necessary or
        it's not a big deal? Can I hear from people who have gotten over
        150K miles using/not using these services consistently? ok thx.
        \_ I had a '97 Maxima with 140K miles.  All I did was oil change
           every 10K-ish miles.
        \_ About all any modern car needs is oil and filter every 6000
           miles or so plus lubing anything with grease fittings at
           the same time and check for leaks and other fluid levels.
           An automatic transmission should get a fluid and filter
           change every 30K or thereabouts if you do it the old
           fashioned way of dropping the pan.  Or you can let it go to
           around 60K and then do a filter change but also do the
           flush so you replace all the fluid instead of just the part
           that's in the pan.  Every 36K/3 years replace the coolant.
           If and when your wheels appear to be wearing funny have the
           alignment checked.  Somewhere along the way you need to
           have the brakes checked if you don't know how or don't want
           to do it yourself. -some guy on usernet...
        \_ What about replacing your timing belt? Is this really neccessary?
           \_ Yes, every 60-90K miles.  You will fuck up everything when this
              goes bad.
           \_ Depends on your timing belt type. On the maxima the timing
              belt does not need to be replaced. On Toyota it's every 60000
              \_ Not all Toyotas have timing belt.  Some has timing *chain*
                 and those usually don't need changing.
2004/12/18-20 [Transportation/Car] UID:35354 Activity:insanely high
12/18   Make sure that you are doing business with a company that
        only supports "blue" candiates:
        \_ How the hell could Fox Cable Net be blue?
        \_ Hey thanks!  Now I know what businesses to avoid.
          \_ Wanted to trick a subscription list into letting me
             have more than 3 subscriptions.  Can get away with
             soda, soda.csua, and csua.  Was hoping for a 4th to the
             same address.  But, nevermind, I'm not going to bother with
             the IP address idea.  Thanks.  -op
        \_ uh, HJ Heinz is red, very red. How can that be?
           \_ Because Heinz is a fucking hypocrite.
        \_ Video games are all democratic while for cars, all except Toyota
           are red. Ditto with gasoline companies. Come on, it's not like we
           really have a lot of choices. The fact of the matter is, most
           corporations are in fact red... what are you gonna do about it,
           move to Montana and not buy anything?
                   \_ s/Montana/Canada/
           \_ Amazingly, there's a reason why businesses are Republican, because
              business owners are overwhelmingly Republican. The reason why
              they are is because the Republican administration favors
              businesses by not demonizing them or overtaxing them or
              over regulating them.  Duhh. Yes, the democratic party is stupid,
              but we already knew that when the only thing its dumbass elitist
              followers can do is pull a stupid stunt like this. You figure
              that after the Iraq debacle they would've learned sanctions
              don't work.
              \_ Why not? If a business wants to go out and align itself with
                 political agendas then it has to accept the possibility of
                 pissing off customers who have a problem with that. Businesses
                 don't have to do that shit.
        \_ Funny exercise: find the most lopsided category.  I found meat
           sellers to have only one blue business.
        \_ Try this with actors. If you are red person like me, makes it
           hard to ever see a movie or watch TV.
           \_ Out of curiosity, have you found any red movies at all?
              How about Red Dawn?
           \_ You're not missing much.  Read a book.
           \_ You blue state people crack me up. Who cares which party
              an actor supports if they do a decent job of acting?
        \_ Toyota is the ONLY blue automobile company. That does it, I'm gonna
           \_ Toyotas suck, dude.
              \_ Such a balanced statement.  Well researched, too.
                 \_ If you could pick a car out of the following, BMW, Mercedes,
                    Jag, Honda, Toyota, I doubt anyone would pick the Toyota.
                    The only thing that's good from Toyota is Lexus and that's
                    only if you get the high-end Lexus. The only time I would
                    pick a Toyota would be if you relegated me to it and
                    domestic cars like Ford or GM. Hell, I'd rather drive
                    a MiniCooper rather than a Toyota, and I'm not a
                    \_ Do you have to be metrosexual to drive a mini? Actually,
                        I don't know any gay guys who drive minis, just metros...
                    \_ The Toyota Camry is the top selling car in America.
                    \_ I'd pick the Toyota.  I think they're reliable,
                       not bad looking, fuel efficient, and gives me bang
                       for buck.  But you knew all that, right?
                       \_ They are expensive, but they are probably the
                          best cars made right now along with Honda. I say
                          this as an owner of a BMW who has experience
                          with Jaguar, Toyota, Honda, and Mercedes.
                    \_ If have the money to buy cars like BMW, jag, and
                        Mercedes, I would still buy a Toyota and spend the
                        extra money on options and upgrades.

        \_ Oh fuck Dell, i am going to throw out my Dell 20" into the trash!!
2004/12/14 [Transportation/Car] UID:35284 Activity:high
12/13   Will you buy generic gasoline?
        \_ Yep, why pay for advertising?
           \_ isn't it dirty (the gas)
              \_ Do what your car's manual recommends. If it calls for
                 premium, then get premium gas. If it says you'll be
                 fine using regular, then using premium will NOT get
                 you any benefit.  If your car wants preimum, chances
                 are it will run OK with regular gas, but you will
                 lose performance (a bit) and in the long run may
                 cause problem with the emission control system.
                 \_ 1. The OP is talking about namebrand gas vs. unknown brand,
                    not regular vs. premium.
                    2. The problem with using regular gas on engines requiring
                    premium gas is knocking, where the air-gas mixture starts
                    burning before the engine piston finishes compressing it
                    and fires the spark plug.  This pushes the engines in the
                    reverse direction.
                    \_ Most modern cars/engine will automatically
                       adapt the engine timing to work with regular
                       gas. Whether you want to do that is
                       questionable, but it should not cause knocking.
        \_ I used to go to Thrifty on Telegraph, until one day the fuel pump on
           my car failed and the dealer said they need to replace the fuel pump
           and clean the fuel tank because there's some dirt in my gasoline.
           Now I only go to Chervon, Shell and 76.
2004/12/7-8 [Transportation/Airplane, Transportation/Car] UID:35195 Activity:very high
         Rethinking traditional ideas of road and traffic design (the Dutch
         model).  Has anybody actually seen this work?  Does it mean faster
         trip times overall?  I remember always driving down Milvia in
         preference to Shattuck; the bumps and occasional stop signs were
         far more pleasant than lane changing and stop lights.
         \_ Not entirely relevant, but the Dutch are the worst drivers in the
            world.  They're like Italians but without determination.  -John
         \_ I did stuff like that a lot too.  The LA version of this is
              'stay off the freeways.' -- ilyas
            \_ ilyas, you seem to hate LA, and you seem to hate UCLA. Why
               don't you move somewhere you like (better school, better
               environment, etc) instead of bitching every day? I mean, this
               is a free country, you can do almost anything you want.
              \_ The motd will now be nuked in a temper tantrum in 5..4..3..
               \_ You seem really smart, can I learn from you? -- ilyas
         \_ Yeah, I much prefer the Bike Route roads to major thoroughfares.
            In Inner and Outer Sunset in the City, roads like this have extreme
            advantages over their more congested, light-regulated cousins.
2004/12/3-6 [Transportation/Car, Transportation/Car/Hybrid] UID:35166 Activity:high
12/3    My car has problem starting. It would start but after 1 second
        it would drop down below 1RPM and die. However, after revving
        and warming up the engine, the idle speed is fine (slightly
        below 1RPM) and it would start and run smoothly. So this
        rules out the possibility of having to adjust the idle speed.
        What's going on and what can be done to it? ok thx
        \_ What year, make, and model is it?
        \_ Do you have a ~ 1996 Camry?  This is a common problem with the Idle
           Air Control Valve (or something else with a similar name).
           My gf had it fixed twice (second time for free because they felt
           guilty I guess), and it still happens occasionally.  The workaround
           is to have the AC on when starting to get the RPMs up.
           \_ This'll happen with any mid-90's toyota.  Good guess.
        \_ I have an idea. GO TO A DAMN MECHANIC!
                \_ is this the first time you're reading the motd?
                   \_ Must be the same person who didn't like the yermom joke.
                        \_ yer dumb.
                        \_ Not at all.
           \_ Or try one of those fuel injector degunker solutions next time
              you fill your tank.
        \_ It's likely the battery. The same thing happened to my car
           several weeks back. Go to a local mechanic, and they'll
           test it quickly for you; then you buy a battery.
           \_ Wouldn't it be cheaper to just buy a replacement battery
              at costco instead of go to the mechanic?
                \_ Not if you battery isn't dead. I doubt the mechanic
                   would charge you for the battery test; it only takes
                   <5 minutes. Also, go check your battery -- it should
                   have a sticker on it saying when it was installed.
            \_ I doubt it's the battery. Once the engine is on, the amount
               of electricity it takes to keep the engine going would be
               pretty low. Given that the op could restart the engine
               and warm the engine up. It could be a loose vacuum hose,
               a bad engine thermometer, or quite a number of things.
               BTW when my battery was close to death and couldn't turn
               the engine over, I got a push start and drove across town
               to a mechanic. Actually, turned out to be the alternator
                \_ I'd agree, but since I encountered the same situation
                   just a few weeks ago, I just thought I'd bring it up.
                   \_ So the engine would actually engage before dying?
        \_ Thanks guys for the input. After browsing the web and
           calling a few dealers who recommended cleaning the carb
           for $100-$150, I decided to DIY. I looked at the site
           and bought a carb/throttle cleaner ($3.75). I spent about
           30 min to/from Pep Boys and another 30 min cleaning the
           carb, and voila! Everything's fine again! Thanks for all the
           advice, I've learned *a lot* by DIY and saved time (dealers
           said I'd have to leave the car for 1/2 day) and saved
           over $100.
           \_ You're an idiot. You saved $100 and you still aren't sure
              what was wrong. Penny wise and pound foolish.
              \_ The carbs were dirty, which probably restricted gasflow.
                 \_ Maybe. Even you don't know. "Probably". Stupid when
                    your car stalls on you in a week.
                    \_ Don't be annoying.  It's not like he's putting his
                       health on the line--learning how your car works and
                       how to fix common problems is a good thing.  Are you
                       one of the people who religiously avoids "warranty void
                       if removed" stickers too?
                       \_ Also, I would argue that learning stuff has monetary
                          value, so that a more expensive solution where
                          you learn something would still be break-even.
                       \_ No, I learned by watching others that you can
                          screw up more than you fix if you don't know
                          what you are doing. If this is a hobby car then
                          great, but if the guy needs the car working then
                          he's a tool. Our current society makes us all
                          think we are capable of DIYing everything. It's
                          what keeps places like Home Depot going. It's
                          better to learn when to call a pro, like when
                          your car might stall on the freeway and kill you.
                          \_  I hate to tell you this, but for the most
                              part, professionals use this same method to
                              fix things.  There's a set of possible
                              problems, try fixing things until one works.
                              Usually, that was the problem.  BTW, I
                              really wonder what kind of car you have that
                              it kills you if you stall on the freeway.
                              Does it explode in anger or something?
                              \_ If you can't see how you might get killed
                                 when your car stalls at 80mph then you
                                 are an idiot - but I already knew that.
                                 \_ What's the problem?  Put in neutral
                                    and pull over.  Stall != instant
                                    screeching halt.  Unless you're a
                                    moron... oh.  I think I see your
                                    \_ Pull over where? Most freeways don't
                                       have shoulders these days.
                                       \_ "Most freeways don't
                                          have shoulders?" What kinda
                                          bizarro world do you live in?
                                          580, 80, 680, 5, all have
                                          perfectly serviceable shoulders
                                          for > 95% of the freeway.
                                          \_ On the left side.
                                             \_ Pulling over to the left
                                                is illegal in most cases.
                                       \_ You have too much fear and
                                          not enough trust for yourself.
                                          I think it's best if you let
                                          the mechanics do everything.
                                          \_ ignorance is safety!
                          \_ There are a lot of advantages of DIY
                             besides saving money. How do you know you
                             can really trust that shop/mechanics?
                             Granted there are certain things you
                             cannot do yourself because it's too
                             complicated or requires specialized
                             equipment. In general, I find
                             contractors, any kind of contractors,
                             will never be careful about your stuff as
                             your would yourself, unless in rare
                             situations you encounter one that's very
                             responsible. It's interesting human
                             psychology that "not knowing" makes you
                             feel more comfortable. Just like in some
                             restaurants, if you see how they cook,
                             you'll never eat their stuff. But not
                             seeing how they cook, and given that they
                             charge a lot of money, makes you assume
                             that they are professionals. Next time
                             you get your tires replaced at ANY SHOP,
                             check the cold tire pressure afterwards
                             with a few gauges. There will be at least
                             one that's WAY OUT OF SPEC. I've seen
                             this on quite a few cars, with (oh, I
                             just had the tire checked last week,
                             yeah!) In general one should achieve a
                             good balance about what can be done with
                             DIY and what to leave to the
                             professional. Sometimes learning a bit
                             about a field can help a lot, even if
                             only for the sole purpose of verifying
                             what the mechanics is saying. I once had
                             a mechanics claiming he didn't tie the
                             engine oil cap tightly because
                             'a wire is in the way', give me a fucking
                             break, it's leaking oil because he forgot
                             to tighten it. Blindly trusting the
                             mechanics is worst than DIY. Most people
                             who have the skill to post on the motd
                             can probably build a computer by
                             themselves and therefore can fix simple car
                             problems like replacing a battery or
                             check tire pressures. -!ap
                             \_ I think you missed the point here. It's
                                obviously good to try to learn and
                                definitely true that you may be able to do
                                a better job yourself. The catch is the
                                word 'may'. Like I said, I have seen a lot
                                of people very knowledgable about cars
                                mess them up in the learning process. Yes,
                                now they know what not to do but their car
                                is messed up! If you want to make a hobby
                                of it then great, but you can find
                                examples of lawyers, doctors, accountants,
                                and such all making mistakes or doing a
                                bad job. That doesn't mean you should do
                                it yourself. Learn about how an engine
                                works and then TAKE THE CAR TO A MECHANIC.
                                \_ If you spend any time to read any of
                                   the auto newsgroups, most people there
                                   don't seem to trust a minimum wage
                                   mechanic. But then again most people
                                   there are pretty knowledgable.
                                \_ Wow.  I didn't realize Carb Cleaner is
                                   so dangerous!
           \_ It's great that you found the problem, or at least it's
              better. Sometime you might want to try Car Talk on NPR.
              That would be a hoot.
2004/11/23 [Transportation/Car, Consumer/Audio] UID:35045 Activity:nil
11/23   How well do those car FM transmitters work?  Do you recommend
        a particular brand?
2004/11/19-20 [Transportation/Car] UID:34992 Activity:high
        This says smog has no proven correlation with deaths.
        \_ Neurosurgeons prefer Camels, for steady nerves!
        \_ Fox News, FAIR AND BALANCED!!! We report, you decide!
2004/11/18 [Transportation/Car, Health/Dental, Industry/Startup] UID:34949 Activity:kinda low
11/17   I'm about to go from a full time employee to a contractor.
        I'm going to miss certain things like stock options, med
        insurance, life insurance, ADD (accidental death or disability),
        etc etc. Can someone who has done this before give me a more
        comprehensive list of these services, and how much they will
        cost me if I get them through venders myself? Thanks.
        \_ Unless you see the doctor a lot more than I do, it's easy to get
           a highish ($1000) deductable PPO plan at less than $100 a month.
           Dental/vision is poor value, just pay out of pocket.  Disability,
           otoh, is very hard to get as an individual.  (I) Don't need life.
        \_ ~ $300 per month to continue a premium plan (BlueShield) through
           COBRA; probably much less for Kaiser, but you get what you pay for.
           Dental and optical are another $100 per month.  Keep it, though;
           once you're off the books, you'll have a fiendish time getting
           pre-existing conditions accepted by any new carrier.
           \_ you can only cobra for a few months
              \_ Up to 18 months depending on your former employer. Ask.

stupid race-baiting troll deleted
        \_ You beat me to it. Thanks.
2004/11/15-16 [Transportation/Car, Transportation/Airplane] UID:34907 Activity:kinda low
11/15   I got a ticket for 92 in a 65. Won't give me traffic school because
        of that extra 2mph I think. How screwed am I with that on my record?
        Besides losing my good driver insurance thing.
        \_ I think that's 1 point because you are 8 shy of 100 (where it is
           automatic 2 points and traffic misdemeanor - also traffic school
           ineligible - i know cuz that was my frist ticket)
        \_ As long as you didn't get written up for "reckless driving"
           I think you are okay. -IANAL
2004/11/10 [Transportation/Car] UID:34804 Activity:nil
11/10   MS previews new search engine:
2004/11/8-9 [Transportation/Car, Science/GlobalWarming] UID:34751 Activity:nil
11/7    Rubber tends to crack with age (you know, esp the ones that
        seal gaps in cars, or in electronics, pdas, watches, etc).
        What materials are best to protect rubber? Veggie oil?
        WD-40? Vasoline?
        \_ Silicone spray, go to Home Depot/Ace Hardware/Pep Boys
           and ask for it. Spray once a year. Do NOT use WD-40, it will
           destroy the rubber.
        \_ food grade silicone.  veggie oil, wd-40, and vasoline
           will all break down rubber.
           \_ how about Armorall? I've been using that...
2004/10/22-24 [Transportation/Car, Transportation/Airplane] UID:34298 Activity:low
10/22   Recommendation for real-time internet traffic and outage reports?
        \_ ping.  :-)
        \_ You have to register, though.
2004/10/17-18 [Transportation/Car] UID:34184 Activity:nil
10/17   The manual for my car says that I should get the air bag system
        checked 10 years after manufacture of the car.  And it's been 10
        years.  So, how important is this?  How expensive is this?  And
        where would I get this done?
        \_ uh... maybe you should call the dealership
        \_ important if you expect to have airbags protect you.  there
           are electrical contacts to corrode, highly combustible
           chemicals to degrade, fabric to age, sensors to fail, and
           no chance for a practice run.
2004/10/14-16 [Transportation/Car, Finance/Investment] UID:34130 Activity:moderate
10/14   I'm having bad experiences with this dealer that has been
        servicing my car lately (poor labor quality, lousy parts, etc)
        What are some ways I can get the word out that this isn't a good
        dealer to bring one's car to?
        \_ Why do you care?  The market will figure it out.  File with the
           BBB if you really care.
                \_ Because they're very incompetent, and when it comes to
                   big dealers like that, the market does NOT figure it out.
                   People see the big name and are drawn to it. And I've
                   already filed with the BBB.
                   \_ So write the automaker, tell them this dealer is a
                      threat to their good brand name.
           \_ The market does not figure it out.  BMW San Francisco sells
              shitloads of cars, but I know people that work in their
              maintainence department.  Bad shit going on there, especially
              involving falsification of repair records.  Apparently it has
              been going on for years, and no consequences have ever come of
        \_ What make of car?
        \_ Can you tell us the dealer name? If I have the same make, I'll
           know not to take my car there...
                \_ the Long Beach Jeep dealer.
        \_ Consumer Reports?
           \_ Unless it's a national chain it might be below their radar.
        \_ Write the corporate offices and complain. Post on Yahoo stock
           message boards. These kind of things get attention.
           \_ I base all my investment decisions on advice from Yahoo stock
              message boards, and now I'm rich, rich I tell you!
              \_ Does anyone remember a TV commercial about someone seeing an
                 advice on some message board telling him to buy VBNM stock,
                 which turns out it's just a fat person sitting on those keys
                 while laughing at the desk?
              \_ Laugh all you want chowderhead, but I posted a complaint
                 I had with a car repair job from Midas on the stock bulletin
                 board and had an offer to fix it for free.
                 Corporate investor relations do monitor these things.
                 Don't believe me? Here is the URL:
2004/10/12-13 [Transportation/Car, Transportation/Car/RoadHogs] UID:34055 Activity:very high
10/12   What are some of the most villaineous FICTIONAL vehicles known to
        people? I'll start the list:
        \_ There have to be half a hundred from star trek.
           \_ "S.S. Botany Bay?!"
              \_ Borg cube?
        \_ Christine.
        \_ Didn't KITT have a archenemisis?
           \_ KATT.
           \_ KARR
           \_ Don't forget Goliath, driven by Michael Knight's evil twin.
        \_ Death Star. NOTHING beats the villaineous level of Death Star
        \_ The Ford Explorer.  Read:
           \_ Explorer is fictional?
        \_ General Lee. "Good ol' boys" my ass...
           \_ Hate any white people, lately?
        \_ The Mobile Chemical/Biological Lab.  Powell said it was!
        \_ The Popemobile
        \_ The Love Bug
        \_ Barbie's Corvette
        \_ Toss-up between PUSSY WAGON and that tan station wagon driven by
           the Illinois nazis in Blues Brothers.  -John
        \_ Are we talking about movies/tv shows or books?  Gray Area
           a.k.a. Meatfucker was pretty evil... but I am not sure he qualifies
           as a 'vehicle.' -- ilyas
                \_ Only in a Hannibal Lecter only-scoops-and-eats-brains-of-
                   mean-people "evil" kind of way.  That said, would you
                   classify Skaffen-Amtiskaw or Mawhrin-Skel/Flere-Imsaho as
                   "vehicles"?  They're "evil" in the same way.  </geek> -John
        \_ There's the evil truck from "The Duel".
2004/9/27-28 [Transportation/Car, Transportation/Car/Hybrid] UID:33785 Activity:moderate
9/26    Any BMW drivers?  Where do you go for oil change?  $$?
        \_ Mine's still under the 4Yr/50KMi warranty but my coworkers
           recommend the Japanese Beetle.
        \_ Dealer. <=$200 for "Inspection I" which includes oil change.
           If it is under warranty don't go anywhere but the dealer.
           \_ The warranty had expired and dealer told me it's $400.
              \_ Wait a minute.  If you're paying more than $40 for an oil
                 change you're getting ripped-off.
        \_ Change your own oil. It's not all that hard.
              \_ It's not $400 at any dealer. To see what is included in
                 Inspection I & II (including cost) see here:
                \_ may be it was inspection 2.  i heard different things
                   from different people.  how often do you do the oil
                   change?  as indicated by the indicator or every 5000mi?
                   \_ I do it according to the indicator, but whatever
                      works for you. Some people are nuts about it, just
                      like some people spend $150/month detailing their
                      cars. I find that every 15,000 miles is 1x per year
                      and that's what BMW recommends. It's what I do.
2004/9/25-27 [Transportation/Car, Industry/Startup] UID:33757 Activity:nil
9/25    Are there any free sites where I can find out the relationship
        between X gas brand and the company that produces it? For example,
        what company is behind "USA Gas"? I'd imagine I could track this down
        through, say,, but I'd rather not subscribe just for this.
        Thanks for any advice.
2004/9/20 [Transportation/Car] UID:33633 Activity:kinda low
9/20    I just got new tires on my car and they (Sears) told me
        that one of the struts is leaking and that I should replace
        it soon.  From looking on the web, I'm getting the impression
        that if I don't replace it, that it will not put me in
        danger, nor will it cause any damage to anything else in
        the car (including affecting the alignment?).  According
        to more than one web site, the only harm of not replacing
        the struts is that the car will not handle as well.  So my
        question is this.  Is there any good reason to change the
        struts before I notice that it's not handling well?  The
        car has over 130k miles and I've never changed the struts.
        \_ anything that leaks will eventually dry out and then
         doom happens
        \_ fyi, i have a 91 civic hatchback and also got new tires last month.
           the guys there said my bushings were all crushed and dried up and
           said they should be replaced asap, and they also said they wanted
           to do the struts.  i said later.  my car does wander a bit on the
        \_ Bad shocks can make handling bad enough to be unsafe as well
           as reduce braking ability. Additionally, they can lead to bad
           tire wear as oscillations are much more likely (read about
           flat spots, cupping, etc.).  You may not notice it going bad
           with a gradual failure, unlike the sudden change when something
           snaps.  At 130k miles, handling has probably already diminished
           a lot! Most shocks have a rated lifetime of around 60k miles.
2004/9/16-17 [Transportation/Car] UID:33569 Activity:nil
9/16    For you motorcyclists:$287
        \_ Awesome.  Also a good reason to wear leathers.
        \_ nice story, but clearly apocryphal
           \_ Unlikely, perhaps, but not impossible -- it's a big world
              where crazy shit sometimes happens.
              \_ yeah, like the JATO unit.  It's made up.  Maybe a squirrel
                 jumped at him or something.  -tom
2004/9/15-16 [Transportation/Car, Transportation/Car/Hybrid] UID:33551 Activity:high
9/15    How do sites like work- do they have cameras along the
        freeway, or are there sensors in the road?  Also, how do they have access
        to that data- is it public or does the DoT provide it on some sort
        of contract?
        \_ I think CalTrans provides the data; they must have some sort of sensors
           and cameras scattered throughout the freeways. However it works, itsure
           is useful.
        \_ I think CalTrans provides the data; they must have some sort of
           sensors and cameras scattered throughout the freeways. However it
           works, it sure is useful.
        \_ see latest issue of EE times.
           \_ looked for it online, but didn't find anything - what was the
              title of the article?
              \_ i looked at the hard copy version.  anyways, basically
                 it's inductors at different locations.  each car running
                 over the inductors will induce a current.  by monitoring
                 the current (each car is unique), one can approximate
                 how fast a car travels from point a to b.
        \_ Fastrak transponders.  Read the paragraph "How is my FasTrak
           transponder used for traffic information purposes?" at
2004/9/15 [Transportation/Car] UID:33543 Activity:high
9/15    Anyone own a 2004/05 Mercedes E320?  Have you had any problems
        with it?  I noticed that the 2003's have had a lot of issues,
        primarily electrical, and overall reliability is down for Mercedes
        the past 10 years.
        \_ Yes, the E-series has had a lot of issues - check Consumer Reports.

           Overall Mercedes reliability has fallen into strictly average
           territory, but keep in mind that all automakers have generally
           improved their quality.  The difference between makes is not
           as stark as it once was.  The real issue with a Benz is that if
           something breaks and you're out of warranty, the replacement
           cost is ludicrously high.  If you want a super-reliable car,
           get a Lexus... though they're not as exciting to drive, IMHO.
           \_ Based on all the reliability issues I've read I'm leaning
           towards a Lexus, but MB really does know how to make their cars
           feel classy (interior/exterior).  I test drove both and the
           Lexus really does feel like a upscale Toyota (current Toyota
           driver).  Interested to hear any real-life E-Class '04/05
           experiences though.
              \_ You might consider a BMW.  My '02 540 has been mostly
                 trouble free, and its styling might appeal more than a
                 Lexus'.  I'd stay away from the i-drive 7's, but the newer
                 5's are supposed to be nice.  You might find this from
                 JD Power useful.
           \_ Sorry, can't help you with that.  I had an SLK and it never
              had a single problem, but other than the engine its a completely
              different car than the E-series.
        \_ My friend's family has a 300D.  Got 300K miles on it and it's still
           running.  Guess MB doesn't make solid cars anymore.
           \_ Ah yes, the 300D.  The days of that sort of Mercedes are long
              gone.  I think the last gasp of the bank vault build was the 190E
              in the early '90s.  Anyone know if this had to do with Daimler
              moving a shitload of its manufacturing to the former East
        \_ According to Consumer Reports, Mercedes has gone A LOT further
           down from merely "average".  It's now the 2nd LEAST reliable brand
           according to their surveys, only Volkswagen being lower.  That means
           that people driving around Buicks and Hyundais have more reliable
           cars.  NEVER buy a car without first consulting Consumer Reports
           to see if the model you are thinking of buying doesn't have some
           red flags associated with it, reliability-wise! I own a 2000
           Mercedes E320 ... In the first year there were lots of funky
           software/electrical type glitches in the car, but since then the
           car has been problem free.  Note that the Mercedes ML was rated
           the LEAST reliable car in Consumer Reports' survey when it first
           came out, which is hard to do given some of the competition
           (Chevy Camaro, etc.).
           \_ I'd be very careful buying a car in its first model year.
              You're just asking for trouble if you do that.
              \_ My 2004 Sienna seems fine.  (Major redesign this year.)  But
                 then it's a Toyota.
           \_ keep in mind though that Hyundai had the biggest _improvement_
              in reliability of almost any major manufacturer, and in a very
              short period of time.  My point that the difference between
              makes is much more narrow than it once was is still valid.
              And yeah, Benzes are rattle-traps these days.  Very stylish
        \_ Mercedes was the top-rated brand 15 years ago and (like someone
           else said) is now one of the worst. The C class and E class
           are especially bad. With S, SL, and CL you are still getting a
           nice car. Not sure about CLK, SLK, and others. Lexus will be
           the most reliable luxury brand, along with Acura. Dunno about
           Infiniti. Stay away from Audi. BMW (which I own) isn't as good
           as it used to be either, but at least the problems are not
           with the engine. Porsche is one of the best. Volvo and Jaguar
           seem to be hit and miss. Both are making better cars these
           days, but my neighbor hates her Volvo because it overheats and
           the dealer can find no reason why it should (lemon!).
           \_ Does anyone else wish Acura would make at least SOME RWD
              cars?  What's with these FWD 5-series knockoffs?  NSX doesn't
              count as its basically an exotic.
           \_ Porsche is one of the best?  I once heard that Porsches spend
              more time at the mechanic than on the streets.  Has it changed?
              \_ My sister has owned two Porches. One was a 1978. The
                 other is a 2003. No problems. One of the highest rated if
                 you read the mags.
                 \_ But didn't they rate dead last in the JD Powers initial
                    quality survey?  Something like over 150 problems reported
                    per 100 vehicles.
2004/9/10 [Transportation/Car, Politics/Domestic/911] UID:33455 Activity:high
9/10    I guess we are learning from Britain...
        \_ For all Americans who've not yet visited the UK (it's worst in
           London) and who can't imagine why massive CCTV surveillance is a
           bad thing:
           -It hasn't cut down on violent crime (in fact, the various
            face recognition trials conducted in the UK failed to snag a
            single suspect)
           -It's leading to suggestions of even further surveillance (such
            as satellite monitoring of car "black boxes" by the police, or
            even the ability to shut down a vehicle remotely if it's speeding)
           -Most cameras are connected to their equivalent of the DMV which
            will have a ticket printed and in the mail, fully automatic,
            within seconds of nailing you
           -Fantastic amounts of CCTV footage, supposedly kept confidential
            under "trust us"-type privacy legislation, finds its way into
            sensationalist TV shows not even worthy of fox (like people having
            sex in their car, with voiceovers from the cops watching and
            making fun of them.)
          In short, be very very very afraid.  -John
        \_ More taxes, less effectiveness!  w00t!
2004/9/9 [Transportation/Car, Transportation/Car/Hybrid] UID:33441 Activity:very high
9/9     Is it a particularly bad time to buy a new car right now? I need one
        soon, and my budget is around 35K. What makes/models would I get a
        decent deal on right now? 2004/2005 models are both ok with me.
        Thanks for any advice.
        \_ if you are in the luxury car market, I would recommend checking
           the used auctions.  A lot of luxury car owners keep their car
           for a year until the next shiny thing comes along, and sell it.
           There is one in Fremont.             -brain
        \_ It's always a bad time to buy a new car, asshole.  for an
           extra 35K you could buy a house that much closer to where
           you work, and probably have money left over to actually
           *invest* in something instead of pissing your hard-earned
           money away on a killing machine that instantly goes down in
           value after purchase.
           \_ Thanks, asshole. Wave me over the next time you're on your
              bike so I can run you down.
              \_ please call me from the hospital after your first heart
                 attack so i can laugh at you. fucker.
                 \_ You do realize that in all likelihood, you're a sociopath,
                    yes?  It's okay, man, there's nothing wrong with being an
                    impotent socipathic nerd.  Have a nice, day.  Poor guy.
                    \_ right, because I operate a machine responsible for
                       the deaths of 50,000 Americans, yes?  Oh, wait!
                       That's you!  fuck off and die.
                       \_ And delusional too!  Nice combo ya got there, kid.
                          Maybe you should up your meds.
           \_ $35K won't even make a dent in a house let alone move you
              to another neighborhood. Not in urban CA.
        \_ BMW 325/330. There should be rebates on
        \_ Care to tell us something about what kind of car you're looking for?
           \_ Sorry about that. 35K implies like entry-level luxuryish.
              I've got a sedan in mind. Something fairly nice, but practical.
              No need to be real sporty or anything, not trying to pick up
              \_ Infiniti G35 coupe, Cadillac CTS, Chrysler 300C is
                 particularly a good deal. You may also want to wait for the
                 Accord Hybrid
        \_ I'm of the opinion that new cars are always a waste.  You can
           get pretty good deals on repo'd cars at the Alameda County
           Auction.  You could get a 2002 BMW for $16,000 or so easily.
           check out
        \_ I just bought a BMW X5 at $600 over invoice.  There are supposed
           to be serious deals on the X3 if you are willing to swing that way.
        \_ Read The_Millionaire_Next_Door and put your $35k into stocks
           instead. Unless you are a sales guy, or are trying to pick
           up chicks, you don't need a $35k car.
           \_ Okay, I sort of lied. I'm not too much into cars myself, but
              my dad is getting old and wants to have a nice car for once.
              So this is for him, okay? Thanks. -op
              \_ Wow, you are a nice person. What are you doing on the motd?
              \_ $35k is as much as what I gave my mother over three years.
           \_ You know, he just asked for some product advice, not financial
              planning or ethics advice.  It's not like he asked which casino
              has the best slots to spend $35K at.
        \_ An entry level Audi A6 fits nicely within your budget and it is
           a lot bigger than BMW 3 series.
           \_ Is bigger supposed to be a selling point?
              \_ It's a well-known fact that old people prefer land yachts.
        \_ if you loved your dad you'd buy him a motorcycle that your anal
           nagging annoying mother didn't let him have for the past 30 years.
           \_ The other advantage here is that you get your inheritence
2004/9/1-2 [Transportation/Car, Transportation/Car/RoadHogs] UID:33278 Activity:high
9/1     Cadillac Night Vision is about $2000. If I buy off shelf components,
        what exactly would I need to get, from where, and for how much?
        I like Night Vision but I don't like Cadillacs.
        \_ Yet another distracting gimic. I would rather spend a fraction of
           that money to buy Xenon headlights instead. It turns night into
           \_ I don't want it to see where I'm going.  I want one for my
              twin 40mm Mk19 autocannon popup turret so I can sneak up on
              cocksuckers in their SUVs and make smoking road pancake without
              them ever knowing what hit them.  -John
           \_ Generally I'd agree, although for anyone without autodim mirrors,
              Xenons on other drivers can be very annoying to have in your
              \_ I thought the same thing too. But then I took a closer
                 look at a Xenon at night compared to a standard halogen
                 and it wasn't anymore blinding. I get more pissed of at
                 large SUVs on the road using their halogens than people
                 with Xenons. And Xenons are more projected than diffuse
                 so you get a more precise aim (and cutoff). The problem
                 with some cheapo Xenons are the lack of auto-leveling
                 which most decent Xenons nowdays should have.
                 \_ I dunno, when I see xenon lights on the other side of
                    the freeway, I get pissed.
                    \_ You must be a very angry man.
                 \_ I want to kill both.  SUV lighting sucks.  Xenon sucks.
                    I don't want to be blinded by either one.
                    \_ Agreed.  I really have doubts how much is utility, and
                       how much is trendy-suv-starbucks-pink-is-the-new-orange
                       \_ You obviously don't own a car with xenon lights.
                          The difference is huge and I would never own a
                          car without them again. As for blinding, my car
                          has a self-dimming rear-view mirror so it's not
                          a problem.
                          \_ Fair enough.
                          \_ *Your* car does.  The *other* drivers you're
                             fucking *BLINDING!* do not!
        \_ FYI, you should check out the Cadillac CTS-V.  Might just change your
           mind - it rivals the BMW M5.  5.7 liter V8, 400 horses, 0-60 in
           4.7 seconds, 395 ft lb. of torque, track-capable handling,
           huge brakes.  Admittedly it doesn't have the beemer's steering
           feel and compromises the handling a little bit for comfort, but
           its still a monster.
           \_ Wow, great marketspeak!  Did you get paid to post that?
           \_ Speaking of which, E60 M5 on Nurburgring:
           \_ Is it made in Germany by big-breasted blonde Aryan women?
           \_ Too ugly. And expensive. Why would I want something that merely
              "rivals" the real thing?
              \_ To be fair, I'd give GM credit for recently reinventing
                 Cadillac into a sport/luxury car vendor that _indeed_ rivals
                 BMW, Lexus, etc. I thought this brand was going to be a toast
                 three years ago. Most pre-pension age people would hate to be
                 found dead in one of their cars. Now, GM is talking about
                 exporting Cadillacs into Europe again. This is a sign that
                 they started making cars that people would like to buy.
2004/8/26-27 [Transportation/Car] UID:33157 Activity:very high
8/26    Don't bicyclists ever stop at stop signs?  I almost leveled one this
        morning when he didn't.  He had a stop, I didn't.  He didn't stop,
        I almost didn't also.  He almost died, I almost dented my hood.
        \_ I ask myself the same question when I drive around my new home,
           Bloomington, Indiana (aka "Breaking Away"). But bicyclists run
           this town, so I just take a couple extra seconds to watch the
           intersections. -elizp
        \__ He is supposed to stop.  But if you hit him you would have a lot of
           explanation to do because the justice system favors pedestrians and
           bicyclists over drivers.
           \_ Haha!  Yeah right!  The system promotes killing with impugnity.
           \_ If it takes a few dead cyclists to get them to understand that
              they should at least look before running the sign, it would be
              worth it.
           \_ you are full of shit. fuck you. please choke on a donut and
              \_ Wow, that was really useful commentary!  Thank you for
                 joining us today!  Where would the motd be without uber
                 geniuses like you to show us how to engage in meaningful
                 and civil discourse?
                 \_  I'm still waiting. eat yer fuckin' donuts.
                    \_ I'm still waiting for more useful and intelligent
                       commentary from you.  Thanks for being here!
           \_ This is a myth. Find a URL or back down. I've seen cops and
              judges react to cases involving bikes and saw absolutely no
              favor for the bicyclist when the bicyclist broke the law.
              I'll give that I cannot speak for pedestrians. The one case I
              saw a piece of before a judge, the pedestrian broke no laws.
                -- ulysses
              \_ Pedestrians effectively always have the right of way, whether
                 or not they're breaking a law.  Bikes are vehicles and must
                 respect all traffic signs and RoW rules.
           \_ Agreed.  But he'd be dead, and I would just have a legal hassle.
              He's still way behind on the deal.
        \_ I do.
        \_ I do.  It's a no-win situation.  Half the cars expect you to blow
           through the stop sign and refuse to go until you do.
           \_ OK.  Why is that a no win situation?  Stop, then, if others
              yield to you, go.
              \_ Either he hits a bicyclist or is made to wait for one.  It's
                 obviously terrible.
                 \_ That's not at all what he said.  He's trying to be a
                    responsible citizen, you're being an ass.
        \_ I have been biking around Berkeley for 5 years now and I find it even
           more appalling that many bicyclists seem to ignore the traffic lights
           even at very busy intersections. They seem to think that the same
           rules don't apply to the just because they're riding a bike.
        \_ I have been biking around Berkeley for 5 years now and I find it
           even more appalling that many bicyclists seem to ignore the traffic
           lights even at very busy intersections. They seem to think that the
           same rules don't apply to them just because they're riding a bike.
           \_ When I lived in berkeley, I found it appalling that cars
              wouldn't stop for pedestrians in a crosswalk!  -meyers
              \_ The fact that cars don't stop for pedestrians shouldn't
                 justify bikes not stopping at stops.
              \_ I don't drive in Berkeley anymore but when I did I sometimes
                 drove through because pedestrians would walk non stop in
                 trickles no matter what the lights said.  If a car didn't
                 push forward a bit in a pedestrian gap they'd be there all day
                 \_ I got a jaywalking ticket once (no traffic in sight) from
                    an overzealous motorcycle cop who'd passed a few seconds
                    earlier.  I had to appear in court (forget the details)
                    but couldn't, as I was on holidays abroad.  The bitch in
                    charge of Berkeley court menial stuff told my mom "but he
                    committed a crime, that's his problem."  Some interesting
                    priorities there.  -John
              \_ Stops should be yields for cars, too!  There should be no
                 laws or rules because they inconvenience me!!!
2004/8/24-25 [Transportation/Car, Finance/Investment] UID:33110 Activity:high
8/24    Springboarding off the quarters thread below.  Where do you get
        rolls of quarters quick and easy?  Lines are too long at my bank
        and all the supermarkets have gone to the auto-change-dispenser
        things.  Right now I go through the BART ticket machines, but
        lugging back that many loose quarters is a pain.
        \_ Go to a casino, by the slot machines. They'll give you all the
           quarters you want.
        \_ If you ask supermarket customer service, they will usually sell
           a roll to you.
           \_ Sorry, I forgot to mention, this usually comes up later in the
              evening, after the customer service counters close.
              \_ Plan ahead: buy two rolls of quarters the next time you're
                 at the supermarket during the day and store them in a safe
                 place.  Then, when you need to do laundry, or play quarters,
                 or put the rolls in a sock so's you can bean someone, you'll
                 have them handy.
                 \_ If I were ever able to go grocery shopping before 11pm...
                    \_ Who are you, Nicolas Cage in _Leaving Las Vegas_?  Hell,
                       even vampires can get to a supermarket before 11pm.
                       \_ You apparently have no idea how entertaining
                          supermarkets can be in the off hours.  High st
                          Super K-mart in Alameda was choice around 3am - all
                          the kids making late night baking soda runs.
                          \_ Or donut shops after midnight.
                          \_ What does one due with baking soda at 3 am?
                             \_ If you don't know, you probably shouldn't know.
                             \_ You can use it to convert cocaine into a
                                smokeable form. I'm assuming that's what the
                                pp is refering to.
        \_ So let's see... you want quarters, and the poster below wants to
           get rid of quarters? ...
           \_ a reliable source of quarters is the issue. for me, my wife's
              bank is reliable, and short lines (BofA). Also, in a pinch,
              a car wash (go to 24hr one, when no lines) and use their
              change machine.
              \_ ps: go on sat mornings. always short lines.
        \_ Every day I put my change in a change bowl at the end of the day.
           When I need change, I take some out. This has worked pretty well
           for me.
           \_ I've been doing that for years and now I have 3 large buckets
              full of random change.
2004/8/20-21 [Transportation/Car] UID:33043 Activity:nil
8/20    pretty interesting -
        dict juggernaut:
        Jagannath \Jag"an*nath\, Jagannatha \Jag`an*na"tha\, n. Also
        Juggernaut \Jug"ger*naut\ [Hind. Jagan-n[=a]th lord of the
        world, Skr. jagann[=a]tha.] (Hinduism)
        A particular form of Vishnu, or of Krishna, whose chief idol
        and worship are at Puri, in Orissa. The idol is considered to
        contain the bones of Krishna and to possess a soul. The
        principal festivals are the Snanayatra, when the idol is
        bathed, and the Rathayatra, when the image is drawn upon a
        car adorned with obscene paintings. Formerly it was
        erroneously supposed that devotees allowed themselves to be
        crushed beneath the wheels of this car. It is now known that
        any death within the temple of Jagannath is considered to
        render the place unclean, and any spilling of blood in the
        presence of the idol is a pollution.
2004/8/18 [Transportation/Car, Computer/SW/OS/Windows] UID:32978 Activity:moderate
8/18    Where is the coolest place in a car on a hot sunny day
        among the following choices.  I ask the same question assuming the
        windows are closed, and then again if the windows are open enough
        to let some breeze in:
        a) trunk
        b) under the driver's seat
        c) glove compartment
        d) in the little compartment between the 2 front seats
        e) other
        \_ on my bicycle riding away after smashing the windows out of
           your infernal combustion engine monster.
           \_ "internal", right?
              \_ Humorless motd denizen
        \_ By the vent with the A/C turned on.
        \_ Less than 1-2 hours, the trunk, longer than that, one of the front
           wheel wells

           \_ But that's outside of the car.
              \_ No, the place where your feet go.
        \_ here's an idea: GET A FUCKING THERMOMETER
           \_ Empirical testing--what a novel idea.  Hey, when you do this let
              the rest of us know.
        \_ Yes, I'm sure variables like what kind of vehicle are unimportant.
2004/8/12 [Transportation/Car] UID:32850 Activity:moderate
8/12    Is Auto Update in XP going to install XP2 for me?  I thought Auto
        Update only downloads hot fixes but not service packs.
        \_ Well, did it auto update you or not?  SP2 (not XP2) has been out
           for a few days.
           \_ Oops.  I meant SP2.  -- OP
           \_ It's only been out as a separate download and cd order.  It's
              not on Windows Update service yet.
              \_ Then why did I get a popup yesterday from the auto update
                 service asking me if I wanted to download/install it?
                 \_ Must be another update it was asking about.
2004/8/8-9 [Transportation/Car, Transportation/Airplane] UID:32770 Activity:very high
8/8     Has anyone done traffic school via the Internet?  How long does
        it typically take?  Recommedations [for SF]?
        \_ In SF, don't you have to take an inperson test at a UPS store or something?
        \_ Also you can only go to approved online traffic schools:
        \_ About 2 hours. I forgot which one I did (just randomly chose
           one off of the list of allowable places). It was great: fast,
           quick, and very easy.
           \_ Most of them also let you save your progress, so I did just
              a little at a time over three days while watching TV, piece
              of cake.
        \_ I went with  It's supposed to take
           about 8 hours, and they actually time your progress to prevent you
           from skimming- this just means you're watching TV in between
           skimming.  Nice site layout, fairly engaging content.  Customer
           service was fair, took them a few days to resolve my complaint but
           it happened.
        \_ My brother did this a few months ago. He said it took about
           2 hrs total. He did it during his lunch hour over two days.
        \_ I used, it was easy.  I don't remember
           exactly how long it took, but 2 hours sounds reasonable.
           They allow you to save and come back, so I spread it out a
           little bit.  The final test had errors in it though.
        \- i did this as well. i just loaded all the pages in different tabs
           so that i could skip to the tests. i surfed the web for about 5-10
           minutes between some of the page loads. i probably spent 30
           minutes on the site itself, but time elapsed was about an hour.
                \_ partha is that you?                          psb #1 fan
                   \_ you are not the psb #1 Fan.  pick your own #.
                   \_ no, the \- was a slip. but thanks for the compliment.
                        - psb #17 fan.
        \_ gf got ticket in San Mateo County. I went online and took her
           test for her, 40 minutes (includes registration time). Damn easy.
           \_ What did you get for doing that? ;)
           \_ They didn't check ID?
        \_ what is the purpose of this line?
           \_ maintaing the horizontalness of the motd.
           \_ It's purpose is to prompt question like these.
                \_ its
           \_ This is a bad sign: she is lazy, irresponsible, and evasive of
              unpleasant tasks.  Dump her NOW!!!
2004/7/28 [Transportation/Car, Politics/Domestic/President] UID:32551 Activity:nil
7/28    Gerald Ford kinda sucks.
        \_ But he invented the Ford Model T!  Hail to the Father of Affordable
2004/7/19-20 [Transportation/Car] UID:32346 Activity:high 54%like:11910
7/19    what is a good home insurance for east bay?
        \_ AAA
        \_ My uncle has State Farm.
        \_ Liberty Mutual
2004/7/15-16 [Transportation/Car, Transportation/Motorcycle] UID:32299 Activity:high
7/15    My motorcycle's odometer only goes up to 5 digits, does that mean
        the lifetime of a motorcycle is a lot less than the car?
         \_ mine goes to 11.
         \_ yes, the average miles-lifetime of a motorcycle is a lot less
            than the average miles-lifetime of a car.
         \_ no, the average miles-lifetime of a motorcycle driver is a lot less
            than the average miles-lifetime driver of a car.
        \_ It's like dog-years.  Your odometer actually goes up to 700,000
           \_ *laugh*  this is funny shit
2004/7/4-5 [Transportation/Car, Transportation/Car/RoadHogs] UID:31162 Activity:very high
7/4     Poll, how long did your last few cars last? Include cars that you
        grew up with as well, I'll start:
        dad's 83 Pontiac: 0-85K, total piece of shit, wouldn't start, engine
                died in U turns (something about turning the wheels),
        86 Honda Accord: 0-170K, transmission rebuilt at 150K. Still
                running but decided to sell it
        mom's 88 Toyota Camry: 0-110K, needed a lot of repairs, total piece
                of shit, already needs new transmission.
        98 Honda Accord: 0-120K, still running like a bunny.
        \_ 89 Olds Cutlass Supreme: 0-225k, still going.  Only routine
        \_ This is actually kind of interesting, but will get way too long.
           How about moving it to /csua/tmp/carsurvey or something? -John
                \_ HEIL John, the native German speaker. Have you ever driven
                   on the Autobahn and what is it like there?
                   \_ That's about as funny as you look, and yes, and it's
                      a lot of fun except that the (at least the ones in
                      a lot of fun except that krauts (at least the ones in
                      cheap cars) are crappy drivers.  -John
                   \_ I spoke no German but I did drive there for a few days.
                      I always stayed in the slow lane because my car wasn't
                      up to the task and Krauts seemed all crazy.  It was
                      like a rock in a rapid.
        97 Cavalier: 0-100k, replaced fucked up engine with a 50k one.  50k
                     miles later, it died every now and then if i step on the
                     brakes after i've started the engine and started to move.
        \_ mom's last few Ford Escorts needed major repairs at around 100K.
           I'm having a very hard time convincing her to buy Japanese. She's
           kind of old fashioned and patriotic. Anyone have this problem?
           \_ yeah, yermom is only putting out for the white guys.  she won't
              do asians and they're a major part of the market!
        \_ 84 Volvo 760 GLE 107-147K mi, was okay until the timer belt
                belt broke
           87 Nissan Maxima, 55K-70K mi, was okay until the transmission
           96 Toytoa Corrola, 0-60K mi, great car had it till early 2003.
                I drove it to cal for 2 yrs, 1 yr to work, my brother
                drove it 4 yrs to cal, 1 yr to work.
           96 Lincoln Continental, 22K-55K mi, another great car. Lots of
                power (220+ hp v8), perfect for passing riced civis w/ n0z.
                Dealer was very nice, would fix every little thing for free.
                Favorite quote about my car: "Shet, you can fit NINE dead
                Russians in trunk". Sold it in 2003 because I got tired of
                paying for 91 octane gas (esp. since the car got 16 mpg)
           03 Subaru Outback, 0-13k mi (to date). best car I've owned.
                Plus points: good gas mileage (22.5 mpg), AWD, lots of storage
                space for my mtb and stuff. Minus points: no cassette player
                (can't drink Kool-aid, err..., use an iPod in the car). Will
                hold on to this one for a while. Trying to convince my mom
                that she needs an 05 w/ turbo's :-)
                \_ Have you considered getting an FM transmitter for your
                   iPod? They are cheap.
                        \_ I tried the iRock, the Belkin and the iTrip.
                           None of them work very well in the s. bay.
                           This is a $80 FM transmitter that is sort
                           of illegal that works well but I don't want
                           to get stopped by a cop on 101. I'm waiting
                           till my warranty runs out so that I can repl.
                           the head unit.
        \_ 89 Honda Civic 235K miles - Pretty much indestructable, almost
                totalled it at one point, was repaired just fine.  Traded it
                in for a luxury car during dot com boom.
        \_ American cars made during the 60's and early 70's were truly great,
           indestructible (but consumes lots of gas).  After that they became
           like crap.  What's the reason?
           \_ After that OPEC happened and the whole auto industry took a
              nosedive. Cars just became unsellable and people wanted smaller,
              low mpg vehicles. When that happened Toyota and VW bugs became
                \_ high?
              exceedingly popular. Detroit scrambled but were not used to
              building cars like this, hence the cars went to crap. This
              tradition is still evident today, where American companies like
              GE are basically selling trucks in the form of SUVs and
              passenger cars are basically the domain of the Japanese.
                \_ it is clear that you hippy tree-hugging liberals have
                   never been to Texas
                   \- hello i have a 91 honda civic @118k which seems to be
                      doing ok although the power seems to have gotten
                      even lower but i am pretty hard on the car like driving
                      down third ave really fast over the construction bumps
                      after mumbling "punch it baby" and humming the theme
                      to the streets of san francisco.
2004/6/30 [Transportation/Car] UID:31081 Activity:moderate
6/30    What is the proper number of years to depreciate a new passenger car?
        \_ Japanese or American?
           \_ 10 years, 5 years
           \_ Volkswagon
              \_ 2 years
        \_ African or European?
           \_ 1/2 year, 2 years
2004/6/30 [Transportation/Car, Transportation/Car/RoadHogs] UID:31078 Activity:insanely high
6/30    Car question:  How long do your brake pads last, generally?  I'm
        talking highway and surface street driving, not off-roading.
        \_ Depends on the type of car and on your driving habits. Brakes
           generally last longer for cars than for suv/mini-vans. If you
           ride the brakes, then the life will be significantly reduced.
           My exp. has been that brake pads last at least 25K miles and
           usually between 30K and 40K miles.
           \_ More general statement than "cars vs. suv/mini-vans" is
              that lighter the car, longer the pads will last, assuming
              similar driving styles.
              BTW, replace them yourself.  Drums are a bit messy, but
              discs are really easy.
              \_ I wouldn't trust my life on my own automotive repair skills.
                 \_ seconded
                 \_ but you might save $20!!!!
                 \_ As opposed to HS dropouts who doze off during mechanics
                 \_ So you would trust your life on some complete idiotic
                    stranger who earns minimum wage rather than yourself?
        \_ every 45K for me. 80% freeway 20% others
2004/6/28-29 [Transportation/Car, Transportation/Car/Hybrid] UID:31038 Activity:high
6/28    Need a friendly auto mechanic or someone knowledgeable about cars
        in Silicon Valley. I have a crashed car and they unhooked the battery
        in the impound lot. I need to get the mileage for insurance and a
        couple of CDs out of the car. Can anyone recommend a person at
        reasonable cost(insurance co. will reimburst me for cost)?
        \_ I went to Fred's Wrench in Alameda a couple years ago after Midas
           told me I needed a new transmission.  Fred drove around with me
           while I showed him all the weird noises, and told me the
           transmission was fine for the age of the car, and that the motor
           mounts needed replacement (which he did for 1/3 the price Midas
        \_ Can't you just go there and connect a battery to it?  If you can't
           do it, I'll do it for $100...
        \_ get one of those cigarette-lighter attachment car starter things,
           hook that up and it should give the car enough power to give you
           an ODO reading and let you retrieve CD's.
2004/6/24-25 [Transportation/Car, Reference/Law/Court] UID:30992 Activity:nil
6/24    If you get a parking ticket and the court makes it practically
        impossible to get a hearing, would you have standing to sue on the
        grounds that there has been a constructive denial of access to the
        \- if it is because you are handicapped and have to crawl up the
           stairs to the courtroom without handicapped access, probably.
           YMWTS: Tennessee v Lane. --psb
           \_ I already know that case, that's why I'm asking. -op
              \- well that opinion should give you a sense of how to
                 think about the issue. anythign more specific to your
                 circumstances will need localized facts, naturally.
                 parking offenses with trivial fines/consequences may
                 involves some shortcuts. --psb
2004/6/23 [Reference/BayArea, Transportation/Car] UID:30966 Activity:very high
6/23    Does street sweeping actually serve a purpose, or is this just another
        Big Government conspiracy to give sinecures to the well-connected?
        \_ You think the well-connected are driving street sweepers and
           parking control vehicles?
        \_ It keeps things looking nice, and in many places generates extra
           revenue from parking tickets.  win win!
           \_ It also prevents trash from accumulating inside storm drains
              so when the rains come, you don't get clogged drains/sewers.
              \_ At the west end of the Sunset district in SF, sand from the
                 beach is a bigger problem than trash, and the streets are
                 swept twice a week.
        \_ It probably does not have to be done every week, but when you
           see places where it's not done regularly, you will notice!
           \_ Many places in oakland, it's every other night.  Seems more like
              a money grab to me.
              \_ Many businesses hose down the area in front of their stores.
                 The trash that accumulates there ends up in the gutter.
                 Without street cleaning, all of that ends up in drains/sewers.
                 Flooding ensues.
                 \-in my neighborhood, weekly seems excessive [p'hill, SF].
                   i think it is a patronage system [more street sweeping
                   volume = more jobs to be handed out by the city, or larger
                   contract]. as well as a revenue system. i think the fines
                   are way to high [i think they are $40 in SF now]. --psb
                   \_ You are giving way too much credit for such low level
                      patronage. And if the fine were cheaper, they'd never
                      get some SF streets swept.
                          \- can you explain to me why the blocked fire hydrant
                             fine is lower than the street sweeping fine?
                             because the leaves in the gutters spontaneously
                             ignite? how about cracking down on illegitimate
                             handicapped permits. my understanding is there
                             are more of thise permits issued in SF than there
                             are parking meters. --psb
                             \- hmm according to a different source, the FH
                                may $50 vs $40. --psb
                             \_ Because if your car is in the way, the fire
                                department can destroy it to reach the hydrant.
                                Fines are meant to deter, not overly punish.
                                \_ Not quite.  Fines are meant to be pesky. Low
                                   enough that it doesn't deter, high enough
                                   to be worth paying the issuer.  I'll go back
                                   to the Oakland example.  You can't find
                                   parking anywhere around  Grand.  It's 2
                                   in the morning.  You're exhausted.  The
                                   street sweeping time ends at 3.  Is it
                                   worth $30 to drive around for 1/2hr trying
                                   to find a different spot, or to go to
                                   Merritt Diner until 3?  Sometimes yes,
                                   sometimes no.
                      \_ lol. spoken like someone who's never tried to get
                         a low level job working for a big city or known anyone
                         who has.
                         know the right person -> city job -> sit on your ass
                         and get >50k/yr
                         This low level patronage system is what makes the
                         Democratic party power machine work in big cities...
                         how do you think that the corrupt Democratic mayors
                         keep their ironclad support from the Unions for
                         \_ Your tinfoil hat's crooked.
                         \_ Obviously someone who doesn't understand what true
                            patronage is. Street sweeping, while not overly
                            difficult. Hardly falls under patronage.
                            \_ You.  Have.  Some.  Punctuation.  Difficulties.
                               \_ Uhm...he has *one*.
                                  \_ But it's a really stupid one.
        \_ If you want to see sinecure in action, check out the guys who
           clean up the parks; on any given morning, they spend 2-3 hours
           sitting in their trucks reading newspapers.
           \_ I cleaned up peoples park for a couple weeks.  most of the
              people cleaning the parks are doing community service because
              they did something stupid and are carrying out some sort of
           \_ Just because municipal employees are overpaid and lazy doesn't
              mean they got their jobs through patronage (at least the
              low-level employees).  It's hard to fire someone and there's not
              too much pressure for good performance.
2004/6/22 [Transportation/Car, Computer/SW/Security] UID:30948 Activity:high
6/22    Does anyone here know anything about San Francisco Mercedes-Benz,
        specifically their service department?  I've heard really bad things
        about the service guys at SFBMW, so I'm wondering if I should take
        my car to a dealer in another town.
        \_ You heard bad things so obviously you should take your car there!
           \_ No no.  I heard bad things about SF BMW - really bad things from
              someone that worked at their service department, stuff involving
              forged service documentation etc... SF M-B might be wonderful
              but it got me thinking, so I thought I'd ask...
              \_ What do the two have in common other than being in SF?!
                 \_ Nothing.  He's just stoned or something.
2004/6/18-19 [Transportation/Car] UID:30906 Activity:moderate
6/18    When renting a car is it necessary to buy their insurance if
        you already have auto insurance?
        \_ The insurance on your regular car rolls over to your rentals, at
           least with GEICO.
        \_ Your credit card might cover you.
        \_ for international, it might not.
        \_ no. they just trying to sell you something you don't really need
        \_ For liability, no. For collision, yes, if you want to be
           covered. Like someone else said, some credit cards cover this.
           Collision coverage stays with the vehicle covered.
        \_ Some credit cards include collision. You should research this.
2004/6/18 [Transportation/Car] UID:30895 Activity:nil
6/18    Has anyone tried renting a car for one way? Is it more expensive?
        It is relatively easy?
        \_ They usually add a separate drop-off charge, which is a one time
           fee and not a daily charge.  But I believethe cost is related to
           the distance between the two places and market conditions(are the
           pickup and dropoff places in popular destinations?  Then it'll be
           cheaper than if you were dropping it off at some boonie place.)
           \_ It is usually a *lot* more expensive, because the drop-off
              charge is often high.
2004/6/16 [Transportation/Car] UID:30842 Activity:very high
6/16    Dammit!  Why won't Daimler sell the Roadster version of the SMART here?
        \_ 2006
           \_ Nope.  2006 is only for the US variant of the forfour.  According
              to the FAQ:
              "We plan to launch a variant of the smart forfour onto the
              US-American market in 2006. However we are not planning to
              introduce the current model range (smart city-coupe,
              cabrio, crossblade, roadster, roadster-coupe) and smart
              forfour there." Maybe they think they can't meet US crash
              safety standards on the other models?  The forfour is definitely
              the ugly pick of the litter.  Still, 60 mpg on a conventional
              gas engine is nothing to sneeze at.
              Also, great pic of the Roadster version:
              \_ holy shit!  those are some ass ugly cars!
        \_ I saw one in Paris last week. BTW, France's smart site features a
           girl in a hot red miniskirt.
           \_ I hate those French.
2004/6/12-14 [Transportation/Car] UID:30773 Activity:very high
6/12    Can anyone tell me - or better yet point me to refs online - whether
        the city of berkeley has the authority to alter the meanings of painted
        parking zones.  It seems to me obvious that if the state says that the
        yellow zone means one thing, then berkeley can't add restrictions, but
        a source of authority would be nice.
           CVC 22507 covers the right of localities to enact parking
           CVC 21458 defines the meanings of the various colors, but
           gives local authorities the right to define the times.
           Hmm, you might have something here. IANAL.
        \- this is a total guess, but i suspect in some areas like handicapped
           stuff, there would be minimums they could not go below, but i would
           think in some other areas they would have wider latitide, perhaps
           subject to notification. however, trying to arguing anything
           subtle with the berkeley parking functionaries is hopeless and
           you probably have no chance of speaking to somebody intelligent
           with discretion, since the "due process" [sic] is stacked against
           you here for minor matters ... bit on the ass by "de minimis non
           curat lex" as it were. berkeley has ignored state law on a number
           of things like the concrete traffic diverters. i think loading
           zone would reasonably be something with some municipal latitude.
           however if the the local rules are not posted that may be a reason-
           able defense [in theory] --psb
        \_ what additional restrictions did they add?  were those restrictions
           posted or made available to you as a member of the general public?
           if there was a sign nearby you're screwed.  if not, throw yourself
           on a judge's mercy and see how it goes.
           \- part of my point above is "you will never get to see a judge".
              if you write up a "mere" letter, it will be turned down without
              explanation. if you want to go to a second round, you will
              probably have to pay the ticket anyway, take off another day
              of your life etc. the only way you can reasonably argue a
              "de minimis" case in berkeley is if it fits into one of the
              well definied exceptions like "broken parking meter". if anything
              if you start arguing with some Xeroxing and Stapling Elf about
              "why guido calabrese would say i am right" you start feeling
              like you are the stupid one.
              \_ It's probably not worth any of this to fight a $28 ticket, but
                 seeing a judge shouldn't be a problem.  Why would this require
                 two days off work?
           \_ They claim that commercial tags/permits are/is required to use
              the yellow zone for loading/unloading.
              \- hmm, you can certainly ask them "what code am i violating"
                 at which point it should be easy to look up. i suppose
                 there is another argument about not enforcing a law
                 consistency. btw, i have seen some loading zones with
                 signs that say things like "only applies to vehicles with
                 at least 3 axels". i dont think you will be able to show
                 inconsistent enforcement. i think you also will not get
                 enough of a day in court to make the argument: "i was con-
                 forming to any reasonable notion of (un)loading ... the
                 state has an obligation to be explicit about any requirements
                 beyond the common sense." of course "ratio legis est anima
                 legis" doesnt apply to berkeley. i hope you fight this
                 and lets us know how it goes. --psb
                 \_ I hope he fights this with enough ammo and body armor to
                    make a good showing at city hall before he goes down.
              \_ They are right. Yellow zones are for loading/unloading only,
                 with drivers in non-commercial tagged cars are usually
                 required to stay with the vehicle. There are yellow zones are
                 also specifically marked "commercial vehicles only." No tag,
                 you lose. If you have a commercial license, you can probably
                 get it dismissed.
2004/6/11 [Transportation/Car] UID:30754 Activity:insanely high
        sad, but what a coincidence.
        \_ Sherrif Dunning needs to get his ass runned over
2004/6/2 [Transportation/Car, Reference/Law/Court] UID:30550 Activity:nil
6/2     To you sceptics out there... after 1.5 years, I finally got paid
        from San Diego Unified School District. They deducted his paycheck
        till it's all paid for. The court is slow (takes several months to
        schedule, delay, serve, receive, and what not), but it works. Justice
        is slow, but there is justice after all.
        \_ So, how much are you getting, over how many months?  Does it
           cover the damage to your car in the original accident?
           What were the total costs of bringing the suit (not including
           the value of your time)?
           \_ Damage was $1700. I spend $300 on a private investigator (did
              I tell you he's very very clever and evasive?) I'm getting
              $2000 total, and he ended up paying for the PI. As for how long,
              I got the full amount 1 month after I served the Wage Withhold
              Order. That is amazing considering that he only gets paid
              $1600 a month, so I guess they deducted his future earnings
              or something, I don't know. The judge didn't reimburse me for
              mileage driving to the court house (took at least 8 trips to
              get forms, etc etc), pictures ($20), photocopy of documents
              ($5), parking meter, numerous phone calls, and misc fees
              which I did itemize but the judge didn't take them. -op
              \_ Maybe he had a retirement fund you got to raid?
           \_ oh, I forgot to say that I had the Sheriff serve the
              Wage Withhold Order to a department called "San Diego Unified
              School District, Department of Court Orders and Wage Earning
              Withhold". So, yeah, I guess they deal with scums all
              the time.                                         -op
                \_ one last thing to add. After getting the paycheck I no
                   longer have this hatred for Vietnamese people        -op
                   \_ ob the driver was Vietnamese?
        \_ What, no opening for a class-warfare flame-fest?
2004/5/30-31 [Transportation/Car, Transportation/Car/RoadHogs] UID:30498 Activity:high
5/30    Does anyone know where I can find average gas mileage for a give
        car/year?  I have a 1994 Saturn SL2, it gets about 27 mpg.  I was
        just curious if that's average.  (About half in town, half freeway
        \_ I just put in one of those Tornados and increased my mpg from
           13 to 16 (it's not an SUV, just old).  They're $65, but it's
           kinda fun to see the improvement.  I only post because I'm
           proud of it somehow.
        \_ is a good place for all car stuff.
           yousr: Manual: 25 mpg / 34 mpg  Automatic: : 23 mpg / 32 mpg
           In my experience, it is normal to fall in the low end of the
           range unless you drive like a grandma. -phuqm.
2004/5/28-29 [Transportation/Car] UID:30477 Activity:low
5/28    100 km on 1 liter of fuel (240 MPG):
        \_ quite cool but like 2 years old.
        \_ and if only the evil bushco controlled oil companies with their
           hands deep in bush's pockets would just let this tech reach the
2004/5/27 [Transportation/Car, Transportation/Car/RoadHogs] UID:30445 Activity:high
5/26    Does anyone know anything about the Unbreakable Autolock? It's like a
        Club that fits on your brake pedal. I can't find any user reviews
        online (like on amazon, epinions, etc). Thanks.
        \_ If you have a car that's so expensive that you're worried about
           it being stolen then it's probably already got some kind of
           immobilizer chip built in.
                \_ Not at all. It's a low-price car, one that's very easy
                   to break into. I know all these anti-theft devices
                   can be broken, but I just want a cheap, easy deterrent.
           \_ Um, not only expensive cars get stolen. Hondas, especially in
              California, are among the most cars stolen.
           \_ Camrys and Tauruses are in the top 5 or 10 most frequently stolen
              cars.  I don't think the OP's concerns are unreasonable.
              \_ They are in the top 5 most numerous cars, which is why
                 they are most stolen.
                 \_ I think it has more to do with ease of entry, etc.  These
                    cars are pretty renowned for being very easy to break
                    into.  I don't think this contradicts my earlier point,
                    None of these are particularly 'expensive' or likely to
                    have elaborate anti-theft electronics.
                 \_ I think the statistics is how many stolen per 1000 cars.
                    \_ No. If you want those statistics then look here:
                       Camry doesn't even make the list.
              \_ Tauruses?  No fucking way.  I've parked mine in the worst
                 neighrborhoods and industrial back alleys for 7 years and
                 the worst thing that happened is some dipshit used it for a
                 shelf and scratched the hood in a campus parking lot.  I
                 *wish* someone would have stolen it when the replacement
                 value was higher.
                 \_ See above link.
                    \_ Reading the link didn't help me get my Taurus stolen
                       about 4 years ago.  I considered leaving the keys in
                       and walking away but I'm not that unethical.
                       \_ There's a wider world outside your skull and limited
                          experience, you know.
                          \_ you're an idiot.  i just wanted my car stolen.
        \_ AutoLock - about $60 (pro version), the older version is about $30
           I think somewhere someone was still able to break it, however it
           is very hard to.  Get it at Kragen.
                \_  thanks. -op
2004/5/22-23 [Transportation/Car] UID:30360 Activity:insanely high
5/22    Where is a good place in the east bay area to teach someone how to
        drive a stick shift (wide open spaces, litte traffic, flat ground)?
        \_ Coliseum?  no good lots at UC Berkeley, unfortunately.
           one of the area malls during offhours?
        \_ Berkeley Steamworks
        \_ Actually, if you can find a slight downgrade somewhere,
           isn't that actually easier to learn on?  Of course, at some
           point you'd have to head back up.
        \_ Golden Gate Fields, lower lot
           \_ seconded, that's where I learned :)
        \_ there's a huge department store (boarded up) with parking
           lot in richmond, toyrsur parking lot, or make a man
           out of them and hit the hills of SF
        \_ Bear Creek Road (take Wildcat Canyon over the hills, go straight
           on the other side). There are a number of trailhead parking areas,
           the road has some gentle hills, then some somewhat-tight curves,
           and there are places where you can get into high gear and work on
           downshifting. Not much traffic, particularly outside of commute
           hours. Wide shoulders. It's where I learned. -gm
        \_ I went to a church parking lot in El Sobrante. I felt blessed
           in the holy place and didn't get into any accident there. Church
           parking lot is the best place to learn stick shift.
        \_ I taught myself to drive stick shift in the parking lot above
           Foothill because it was the only reasonably empty lot I could find
           in Berkeley.  It's an oval with two long flat straightaways, and
           edges that feature a slight grade.  Having the graded edges was a
           nice way to get a feel for stick on hills, and was useful for
           practicing starting on a grade.  Plus, when you're done, you can
           test them by having them drive up Hearst. :) -dans
           \_ I taught my sister to drive stick behind Foothill/Stern, but as
              I recall it, it's a long oval, one way going up hill, the other
              going downhill. I had to replace my clutch 4 months later.
2004/5/21 [Transportation/Car] UID:30356 Activity:nil
5/21    Two related questions: Is there any program or method that allows
        you to scan in an image, and then separate the image into its
        different components/shapes (i.e. if a picture of a car was
        scanned it, it would then separate out the tires, body, etc,
        and give each one a handle that could then be moved around,
        scaled, etc)? Second, is there any relatively inexpensive Windows
        program that allows you to do simple animation? Thanks.
        \_ write one
        \_ This is vision-complete, which is AI-complete.  There are some
           papers on solving some small versions of this problem. -- ilyas
                \_ Thanks, but I'm looking for simple software out there
                   already (if they even exist) to help someone who wants
                   to create some animation.
                   \_ If you find such a program, let me know please, I have
                      some uses for such a program myself. -- ilyas
        \_ closest you can get in non-research sw is "magic wand"
2004/5/21 [Transportation/Car, Transportation/Car/RoadHogs] UID:30348 Activity:very high
5/21    My boss's new black BMW got keyed recently along the length of the car.
        He tried to buff it out, but the scratch is still there.  Any
        recommendations?  Thanks.  No, I didn't do it.
        \_ are you the world's biggest sycophant? why do you even care?
        \_ Comprehensive insurance. My car got keyed and I paid $50 out-of-
           pocket. $100 and $150 are more common of more  expensive cars.
           \_ Bad suggestion. Your insurance will go up. Don't file frivolous
              \_ That's what comprehensive insurance is for.. it includes
                 minor theft / vandalism and isn't supposed to count
                 towards your premium going up. They aren't allowed to
                 hike your premiums for these things. BTW, this also
                 includes things like cracks in your windshield from
                 rocks on the freeway
              \_ My premium didn't go up. Claims against comprehensive
                 (because they're committed by acts of vandalism or acts
                 of God) don't increase your premium. Check with your
                 \_ "If God lived on Earth, people would knock out all His
                     windows." -- Yiddish saying
                 \_ Anything under $500 or so should not increase your premium.
                    But most comprehensive come with a deductible that you
                    have to pay out of your pocket.  If you have $250 or $500
                    deductible, not worth it.
                    \_ Mine was over $500 and it didn't increase my premium.
                       The point is that it wasn't your fault and was
                       completely out of your control. In that case, it should
                       not count against you as it would if you were simply
                       a bad driver. $250-$500 deductibles are pretty steep.
                       I've never seen them that high although it would be
                       \- Helo I dont think you understadn moral hazard.
                          Anyway, if you file a lot of claims, it may suggest
                          you somehow more expensive to insure ... whether that
                          is because you live/work/park in a bad area, have
                          a nasty bumper sticker that pisses off people and
                          gets your car keyed, whether you have a stalker or
                          neighbor who hates you. Unless an insurance co is
                          regulated against using filed claimed as signals,
                          it probably makes sense for things like this to have
                          an effect on primiums. --psb
                       \_ You must be paying high premium.  How often do you
                          claim for comprehensive?
                          \_ Not really. I only filed once because some
                             asshole who deserves to be gang-raped in
                             San Quinton keyed my mid 90's car.
                             \_ If you hadn't blocked his driveway,
                                he wouldn't have keyed your car.
                          \_ I had a $100 deductible on my comprehensive (I
                             don't have comprehensive any more).  Came in handy
                             when a rock cracked our windshield (and the
                             windshield cost $900 to replace).
          \_ Do you drive a BMW or sports car?
        \_ If your boss drives a BMW, he/she must have money pay for such minor
           damages.  Why even trying to waste your precious time to even
           find a cheap way to fix it.
           \_ because he's the one who keyed it
              \_ Loser #1:  No one likes wasting money, even BMW drivers.
                 Loser #2:  I didn't do it.
                 \_ Loser #3: ass kisser.
                    \_ Oh yes, I see now how this discussion has evolved.
           \_ BMW drivers have hearts and souls, too.  And sometimes not\
             so snobby as to think "$500 is nothing." --chris
             \_ It's actually amazing what misconceptions people have of
                BMW as being an expensive car. Relatively speaking, a
                3-series actually costs less than those monsterous SUVs
                and even many sedans that look cheap (Subaru STi, Evo,
                G35, Lexus, etc.).
                \_ X5
                \_ My 3 series was over $40K. Lexus, G35, and such were
                   almost $10K cheaper. It is expensive for what it is. By
                   the way, keeping a low deductible is a waste of money.
                   Get one with $500 or $1000 and use it only when you need it.
                   \_ Lexus and G35 are pieces of crap.  Just because they're
                      $10K cheaper doesn't mean it's a good value.  You should
                      have bought a used 5-series for the same money. -chris
                      \_ That's actually true. Edmunds uses to concept of
                         true-cost-of-ownership  which factors in things
                         like mileage, depreciation, and maintainance costs.
                         BMWs have free maintainance for the first 3 years.
                         They hold their value pretty well and they're
                         pretty fuel efficient. Their lame SUVs, on the
                         other hand, are a different story.
                      \_ I think Lexus is a better car and my next car
                         might well be a Lexus. Also, if I wanted a 5
                         series I would've gotten a 5 series. I didn't
                         want a 5 series.
                         \_ Latest issue of Consumer Reports shows that
                            reliability for Mercedes & BMW is in the dumps.
                            Japanese luxury cars don't have that problem.
                            \_ Yep. My neighbor has a Mercedes and a
                               Volvo. His next car? Toyota Avalon. He's
                               sick of the problems and his last Toyota
                               had none.
                            \_ most of that is about trim pieces and such, as
                               opposed to costly mechanical stuff, but yeah.
                               \_ Look at it this way. I have had all 4
                                  power window regulators replaced under
                                  warranty at $400 each. When the warranty
                                  goes out that is not a cheap repair. Add
                                  in the time I wasted with my car in the
                                  shop and the frustration (one broke on
                                  my way to a concert and I had to go back
                                  home to switch cars!) and it sucks! My
                                  Honda hasn't had one regulator replaced
                                  yet in TWICE the time!
                   \_ Well the 3 series price range is huge, the base ones are
                      retail 28K, invoice under 26. There are quite a lot of
                      cars in the 30-40K range that people don't get this
                      attitude over (Ford Explorer). High end brands just each
                      have connotations about what kind of people own them.
                      But for some reason Audi and Acura and even Lexus I think
                      don't have that brand image. Probably because it wasn't
                      until the 90's that they really got in the game.
2004/5/20 [Transportation/Car] UID:30324 Activity:high
5/20    Holy Jesus, how fast was this guy going?
        \_ I don't know but those ain't Z-rated tires.
        \_ Looks like only one car is involved and there is no sidewalk.  So
           probably all six dead were passengers in the car.  Overloading and
           speeding, what a combo.
           \_ I see bits of another car there.
              \_ I see some multicolored tarps to cover the bloody
                 remains, but I don't think I see any other car bits.
2004/5/17-18 [Transportation/Car, Academia/Berkeley/Classes] UID:30255 Activity:insanely high
5/17    MOTD Reverse Bragging rights poll...
        I am 4.5 years out of Cal (BS EECS) and make $52k (benefits/nostock).
        Can anyone beat that?
        \_ 5 years out, $60k/yr BSME.
        \_ I'm five years out and getting 20k/yr...that's grad school.
           \_ That may be out of Cal, but not out of school, you don't count.
        \_ Sometimes my pimp gives me two rocks instead of one! --motd BS EECS
           \_ but how many years out of college? If you graduated 2001-2003,
              that's to be expected.
        \_ How much does a senior lecturer at Cal make?
        \_ What do you do?
        \_ I'm 11 years out of Cal (BS CS with honor) and I'm still at the
        \_ I'm 11 years out of Cal (L&S CS with honor) and I'm still at the
           bottom of the corporate ladder.
           \_ It really takes BS (the other kind) skill to climb the
              corporate ladder. Do not feel bad. I am in the same boat.
           \_ 11 years but how much do you make?
              \_ ~$110k.  I have friends who either make the same with fewer
                 years out of school, or make more and are higher on the ladder
                 \_ Dude, this is the REVERSE bragging rights poll. You
                    are bragging.
                 with the same years out of school.
        \_ 7 years out with a BS, $60k -geordan
        \_ 12 years out with a BA, $60k
           \_ BA in CS or some other field? If it's CS, that's impressive!
              \_ English Lit.
              \_ Anyone here make over $100k and drive a car worth less than
                 \_ 65k, $800 car (I heard that since it runs I can get this
                    much at a monster truck rally).
                 \_ does it count if you don't own a car?
              \_ Why is this impressive?  And why does anyone care about a
                 difference between EECS BS and L&S BA?  -L&S BA, $70k, 7 yrs
                 \_ EECS & CS are on the same scale, but it isn't impressive
                    if someone has an English degree and makes $50/yr, that's
                    called being "well-paid".
                    \_ International Relations, 7 years out of school, very
                       well paid.  It's not what you graduated with, it's what
                       you do with the degree.  -John
                       \_ .ch!  .ch!  .ch is the STANDARD!  Country!
                       \_ Yes, but look where you have to live.
        \_ 7 years out of school.  Gave up 124k job to take 80k job higher on
           ladder and feeling good about it.  Driving car worth about $2500.
2004/5/14 [Politics/Domestic/California, Transportation/Car] UID:30221 Activity:nil 53%like:30210
5/13 (
        Price of gasoline a little high for California?
        \_ "Price of gas at a station in Santa Barbara, Calif. Tuesday morning
            May 11, 2004, was $3.11 for full service, 91 octane. It was later
            changed to $3.13."
            Who buys _full service_ gas anywhere?  Premium yes, but full
            \_ Old people and others who have trouble standing up and walking.
                \_ oregon won't let you pump your own gas
                   \_ OMG, another reason why Oregon sux0rs.
                      \_ And yet they pay less for gas than we do...
                         \_ We should totally invade Oregon and steal all their
                            cheap gas.  Oh wait...
                            \_ w00t!
                   \_ Not a terrible thing in a rainy state.
                      \_ full service in a rainy state is not terrible...
                         *forcing* people to pay for full service is *always*
                         \_ It's different from full service, it's called mini
                            service. And Oregonians can alway vote to repeal.
               \_ Should these people be trusted behind the wheels?  Don't get
                  hit by them when you're on the sidwalk!
            \_ It's a luxury. People who couldn't give a damn about how much
               it costs to fill the H2 can spend the extra bucks to have
               someone making minimum wage to check their oil, wash their
               windows, and check their tires. Such places exist...
2004/5/13-14 [Politics/Domestic/California, Transportation/Car] UID:30210 Activity:low 53%like:30221
        Price of gasoline a little high for California?
        \_ "Price of gas at a station in Santa Barbara, Calif. Tuesday morning
            May 11, 2004, was $3.11 for full service, 91 octane. It was later
            changed to $3.13."
            Who buys _full service_ gas anywhere?  Premium yes, but full
            \_ Old people and others who have trouble standing up and walking.
                \_ oregon won't let you pump your own gas
                   \_ OMG, another reason why Oregon sux0rs.
                      \_ And yet they pay less for gas than we do...
                         \_ We should totally invade Oregon and steal all their
                            cheap gas.  Oh wait...
                            \_ w00t!
                   \_ Not a terrible thing in a rainy state.
                      \_ full service in a rainy state is not terrible...
                         *forcing* people to pay for full service is *always*
                         \_ It's different from full service, it's called mini
                            service. And Oregonians can alway vote to repeal.
               \_ Should these people be trusted behind the wheels?  Don't get
                  hit by them when you're on the sidwalk!
            \_ It's a luxury. People who couldn't give a damn about how much
               it costs to fill the H2 can spend the extra bucks to have
               someone making minimum wage to check their oil, wash their
               windows, and check their tires. Such places exist...
               \_ Most people driving an H2 can't afford full service.
2004/5/12 [Transportation/Car] UID:30193 Activity:nil
5/12    When people compare miles-per-gallon between gasoline and diesel, are
        they comparing apples to oranges?  How is one gallon of gasoline
        equivalent to one gallon of diesel?  Can they be chemically converted
        interchangably?  Or, can one gallon of gasoline and one gallon of
        diesel be produced from the same amount of crude oil?  Thanks.
        \_ Diesel is more efficient in miles-per-dollar.
2004/5/11 [Transportation/Car] UID:30165 Activity:nil 57%like:30154
5/11    /var is full
        [directory listing deleted]
        \_ /var/mail is a separate partition.
        \_ How do these happen when everyone has only a 15MB quota on
           \_ Some people are 'special' and get to take the short bus.
           \_ All animals are equal, but some animals are more equal than
        \_ In /var/tmp:
        -rw-------   1 fchan     wheel   1010293 Oct 21  2002 img-PAR087084
        -rwx------   1 brianm    wheel   1308404 Sep  7  2003 DSC01095.JPG*
        -rw-r--r--   1 coganman  wheel  24274863 Jun 13  2003 coganman.tar.bz2
        -rw-------   1 nevman    wheel  35657877 May 11 13:09 nevman.devnull
2004/5/11-7/10 [Transportation/Car] UID:30154 Activity:moderate 66%like:29838 57%like:30165
7/9     /var is full.  help
        \_ lately when /var fills it's usually a spamassassin process out
           of control, not someone leaving files around.
        \_ In /var/tmp:
        -rw-------   1 fchan     wheel   1010293 Oct 21  2002 img-PAR087084
        -rwx------   1 brianm    wheel   1308404 Sep  7  2003 DSC01095.JPG*
        -rw-r--r--   1 coganman  wheel  24274863 Jun 13  2003 coganman.tar.bz2
        -rw-------   1 nevman    wheel  35657877 May 11 13:09 nevman.devnull
        \_ /var/tmp takes 55M.
2004/5/10 [Transportation/Car] UID:30131 Activity:moderate
5/10    I have a British auto mechanic working for me that likes to refer to
        my car with feminine pronouns, as in "she's looking great!"  or "she's
        almost ready!"  Is this a British thing or is he just weird?
        \_ This is a long standing thing.  Not just british.  Probably stems
           from referring to ships in the feminine.
        \_ Neither.
        \_ So you ride a hot chick?
           \_ Could be he likes riding guys.
           \_ No, yermom.
        \_ That's common, especially for other modes of transportation
           too, like planes and boats. Maybe not so much by american
           mechanics, who don't have much passion about what they do.
2022/05/27 [General] UID:1000 Activity:popular
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