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Thursday, February 24, 2011

Time Wave

The Nilson Brothers Garage time warp crashed into reality again yesterday. I took a phone call in the office from a man I will refer to as Honda Redux.

“Hi, is this Bernie?”

I’d just greeted him with my usual ‘Nilson Brothers Garage, Bernie speaking, may I help you?’ so indeed it was me.  :) “Yes, Sir, how may I help you?”

“I brought my Honda into you seven or eight years ago for an alternator problem. An old customer of yours recommended you.” He mentioned my old customer’s name and even Mr. Redux’s name seemed familiar. “My 1980 Honda Civic has the same problem with the red battery light on the dash. Can I bring it in for you to check it out?”

“Sure. Drop it off and I’ll find out what’s wrong. You probably have the diagnosis right. When the red battery light comes on it usually means a diode leaking voltage back into the dash from the alternator.”

“I’ll be down in about twenty minutes.”

So, we say our goodbyes and I go searching my very complete data base and find Mr. Redux’s invoice within minutes. He had an alternator and regulator replaced in January of 1997. I pluck the hard copy out of the filing cabinet and await Mr. Redux. When he comes in I show him it’s been fourteen years since I last saw him and his 1980 Honda. We share a laugh at the ‘time flying’ business while I’m enjoying the time warp wave once again. One entertaining part of being in the same place working a service business for thirty-five years is the way the time concept wavers in and out of the shop’s reality. It’s like being one of those gatekeepers in the Twilight Zone.  :)


Charles Gramlich said...

Just a little bit freaky, but comforting all the same.

BernardL said...

Yeah it is, Charles. I do take some comfort in being the Gatekeeper. :)

Stephen Parrish said...

I love stories like this.

BernardL said...

Thanks, Steve. He just picked it up a few minutes ago. It has 389,000 miles on it and he commutes two and a half hours often between Oakland and Sacramento. Yikes! I think he needs more magic than the Gatekeeper can provide. :)

raine said...

Geez, I'm just as bad. I read this & my first thought was, "wait, that's wrong...1997 wasn't 14 years ago."
Running away now...

BernardL said...

See Raine, the Gatekeeper gave you a glimpse at the time warp he must deal with all too often. :)