“Okay so here goes. In 2005 I’d just got out of prison and was still looking for work. Unlike my past self though I was determined to do the right thing and live the remainder of my life in the free world this time. A friend knowing my intentions let me do some work to her daughter’s Acura. Before going to prison I was employed at a Honda dealership so I know the Hondas and Acuras quite well.
It had been almost five years since I picked up a wrench and I was a bit rusty but I thought I would take a whack at it anyways. So he wanted me to replace all three engine mounts. The rear one I had a difficult time with and had to jack the engine up a lot to install the rear mount. So after spending all day working on the car it had just got dark and a friend who had helped me with the job and I went for a test drive.
After driving the car for about a mile everything seemed fine and the car ran great. So as I was driving the car back to the owner’s house my buddy decided to turn on the stereo. You know the ones the kids like these days with all the amps and the bass that rattles the license plate frames. So as he turns on the stereo I noticed a small flash go off under the hood. I wasn’t sure what it was and continued driving. After about four more blocks suddenly I start to see smoke billowing out from under the hood on the driver’s side.
Uh-oh. My heart sank.
So I freak out and pull over to the curb thinking to myself this isn’t good. I then pulled on the hood release cable only to have the whole lever pretty much fall off in my hand. So now I couldn’t get the hood open. The reason is because the fire that was now burning had melted the hood release cable! Now I’m in panic mode ringing all the neighbor’s doorbells asking if anyone had a fire extinguisher I could use. The problem was I was pretty much covered in grease and if I were in the neighbor’s shoes I myself probably wouldn’t have opened the door either.
So at least one of the neighbors called the fire department. While all my friend and I could do was watch the car go pretty much up in flames. The fire department managed to arrive before the flames made it to the interior of the car but at this point, it was totaled. And if it wasn’t after the fire department was done ripping the hood open and dousing the flames it was a total loss.
Needless to say, calling my friend was a phone call I hated having to make. She answered and in her anticipation, she said: ‘Cool your done with the car how long before you make it to my house so I can pay you?’
Oh boy. After taking a deep breath I told her that I was almost there but can no longer make it. I told her on the way there her car caught on fire and burned to the ground. Her response was, ‘Very funny so when can you be here?’
UGH talking about wanting to crawl under a rock and hide for a year or so. Or heck even put me back in the hole a year as punishment would have felt better. In any case to make matters worse, I asked her to come to where the car was and I’d try to explain what I still really didn’t know how the fire started.
Yes, she was quite surprised to see the car. After the fire department made sure the car was a total loss I felt like a dumb idiot and it took my friend a while to get over it. I had no money but I did get to pay her back by installing head gaskets on a V-8 Dodge truck she had and a few other things. The way I figured it is while lifting the engine I must have stretched one of the power cables going to the amp from the battery exposing the wire which was then laying on metal and once the stereo was turned on poof!”