The Joy Was Short-Lived

Today’s post and post title are a response, of sorts, to this post.

After yet another of the countless examples of incompetence and apathy by American companies and their workers had utterly ruined our Monday morning, my wonderful wife and I decided to splurge for lunch. We decided to go to the great Andreoli, a place we hadn’t visited in at least seven months.

Apropos of our intended destination we set out in the Maserati, despite my reluctance to drive it more than a few miles at a time until/unless I knew it was sorted. Sure enough, five minutes after we left the house we heard a loud beep and then the dreaded “Check Engine” light lit up.

Obviously, the trip to Andreoli was out and a trip to the shop was in. I texted Stephen, my “car guy,” to let him know what had happened and then called the shop that had the car last week to let them know I was headed there.

I guess modern automotive diagnostics can be a good thing as a tech plugged in the OBD reader and immediately found a code for a faulty thermostat. The days of wax and a valve in a small metal housing are, apparently, over as the Maserati thermostat is an all-electronic device. No, the temperature gauge had not indicated the engine was running hot.

Turns out that wasn’t the only problem. I received a call a few hours later informing me that a radiator hose had split. I saw dollar signs spinning in my head, but the tech told me that since they should have caught the issue while the car was in last week, both radiator hoses would be replaced free of charge. The problem is only one source exists for such parts, Maserati. The repairs will not be completed until tomorrow. You do not want to know how much a Maserati thermostat costs, even with the discounts I will receive thanks to Stephen and his association with this shop and many others.

All things considered, I guess things could have turned out worse, but at the moment the “Check Engine” light lit up, both my wonderful wife and I were at our wit’s end. Ultimately, the big-box hardware store also provided some good news in the form of a partial rebate for the large purchase we made. However, the massive neck/head ache that is still bothering me as I write this, despite taking four ibuprofen and two acetaminophen an hour ago, is almost certainly a delayed reaction to yesterday’s stress.

I don’t want to express an extra-cynical thought such as, “Life’s a bitch and then you die,” but truly stress-free days are all too rare, which is why I wrote about the joy of driving the Maserati in the post linked at the beginning of this one. Why did I buy the Maserati? Oh yeah…



People who admire the Chinese government need operations to have their heads removed from their rectums. This piece from CNBC is just one of many about the US government arresting two New York residents for allegedly operating a Chinese “secret police station” in Manhattan’s Chinatown, part of a crackdown on Beijing’s alleged targeting of U.S.-based dissidents. More from the CNBC article:


A 2022 investigation published by Spain-based advocacy group Safeguard Defenders reported that China had set up overseas “service stations,” including in New York, that illegally worked with Chinese police to pressure fugitives to return to China…The Department of Justice has been ramping up probes into what it calls “transnational repression” by U.S. adversaries such as China and Iran to intimidate political opponents living in the United States.


One of the reasons I am so opposed to the beyond foolish obsession with electric vehicles is that such a transition places our transportation infrastructure in the hands of foreign countries like China. I suspect many of the EV zealot lemmings also need the operation mentioned two paragraphs ago and for the same reason.


As time passes and temporal arrogance grows unabated, the sheer genius and enormous contributions of Albert Einstein fade, swallowed by the inanity of modern so-called life. This piece from LiveScience reports that he was right about invisible dark matter and that light produced just 380,000 years after the Big Bang was warped by that dark matter exactly the way Einstein predicted it would be.

I have lamented that in this world of faux equality, the idiocy of woke, and increasing anti-Semitism, Einstein would not be appreciated today. Of course, as I just wrote I think he has become very under-appreciated.



I am not promising anything–not to put too fine a point on it, but I, like everyone else, am not promised tomorrow–but I am beginning to toy with the idea of an Ultimate Garage 4.0. IF I publish this compilation it would almost certainly not be until next year.

I would love to hear suggestions from you as to how this Ultimate Garage should or should not be presented. One idea I currently have is that I should have fewer cars than versions 2.0 and 3.0, maybe limit the list to ten.






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14 thoughts on “The Joy Was Short-Lived

  1. As I told my wife yesterday, don’t sweat the small stuff. Yeah the Maserati will give you angina, but how many people get to drive such a beauty? I would suggest joining the Maserati forums-if you haven’t-to find out the “sore spots” of ownership, and maybe consider nipping certain things in the bud. Remember joy joy joy. Don’t make yourself a schlemazel!


  2. Bummer about the issue with the Maserati. Good that it was caught now, rather than 50 miles from home and in July.

    I looked at the menu for Andreoli. Looks to be a mix of southern and northern Italian cuisine. I was fortunate in years past to travel to Italy for my work. I found northern Italian cuisine to be vastly different from southern, which is the predominant style found in the US. And one should not be in a hurry to get out of the restaurant there. Dining is as much about the presentation and experience, as it is the food. I did find I preferred the northern style of cooking as it had less emphasis on heavy red or white sauces and large servings of pasta. On one of my trips a lady I met as a potential supplier for a company I was working for, took me to a small, like 6 tables small, ristorante for dinner one evening. We were there for about 2 1/2-3 hours. I’m quite certain they did not start preparing the next course until the previous one had been cleared from the table.
    As a side note, the last time I was there was before they had switched to the Euro, and were still using the Lira. IIRC the exchange rate was 1700 Lira to one US dollar, so a meal price was eye popping until you did the math. (maybe Maserati is still using the Lira for pricing?) 🙂

    I ran across this article about EV’s I thought you might find interesting. Perhaps there is hope, be it ever so slight.


    1. Thanks, DDM. Yes, of course things could have been worse, but they could also be better, much better.

      Italy as we know it today did not exist until 1861. Different parts of the country are, indeed, quite different in many aspects. It is actually incorrect to label a dish as “Italian” given, as you point out, the differences in regional cuisines.


      1. Regional differences went well beyond cuisine. The first time I flew into Milan and deplaned, I thought I might have gotten onto the wrong plane in Germany. At least 3/4 of the people were fair skin, fair hair, blue eyes. I finally saw the driver who had been sent to pick me up, young blond lady. On the ride to my hotel I asked about this. She pointed in the direction of the mountains and told me, “That is Switzerland, about 1 1/2 hours away.” It all made sense then.


  3. Best of luck on your Maserati, my friend. I am so not a fan of China and I try hard not to buy goods made there. It is all but impossible. I would like to see TikTok banned, but then I think about first amendment rights. I have decided to do what I can and not get agita over things I cannot control.


      1. Yes, US users have First Amendment rights. Interesting that the government of a country where citizens do not have the right to freedom of speech can exploit that right in other countries. Make no mistake: the Chinese government is waging war on the US and we don’t seem to realize it. Ignorance is not bliss.


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