I'm driving a rental car this week. Why? Because I finally got around to having the damage repaired from that little vandalism incident back in September. I so look forward to not having to lean across the passenger side of my car to unlock the driver's-side door!
The rental is a nice little Kia. I have had more exciting rides. Then again, I have had some stupid ones. On one business trip, I enjoyed the luxury and high-tech entertainment system of a Pontiac Aztek... but I wouldn't be caught dead owning one, it was so ugly. During another stretch of car repairs, I got saddled with an American-made vehicle whose name I won't spill (coughchryslercough), and whose windshield was raked at such an extreme angle that the top of it came up to about the bridge of my nose. And so, because the seat didn't move back any farther than it absolutely had to, and couldn't be lowered at all, I had to drive hunched over the wheel with my neck at an excruciating angle. Fun times.
For my stupidest car rental story, however, I have to return to one of the oldest themes on this blog... my own stupidity. I'll never forget it. I was driving west on U.S. Highway 30, passing through Columbia City, Indiana, in a pristine rental car. I had stopped to buy a 20-ounce plastic bottle of soda pop on my way into town. When I broke the seal on the bottle, the beverage exploded. I don't just mean that it foamed over the top of the bottle. I mean that it shot out in all directions, coating the windshield, the dashboard, the upholstery, and myself with a generous coat of sticky brown syrup. I used some strong words at that point - words almost but not quite strong enough to remove stains from upholstery.