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Thursday, August 02, 2007

Car Woes: Part Four Hundred and Eighty Six

About a month ago my car was stolen from a parking lot in Santa Rosa, California. It sucked. I've since bought a new car, and by new I mean a slightly newer version of my old car, which was a 1995 Honda Civic coupe. What can I say? I'm afraid of change. Point A to Point B with decent gas mileage is really all I'm asking for.

By the way, the police ended up finding my old car about three weeks after the theft, parked innocently on a fairly busy street about half a mile from where my mom lives. Because years ago I had taken advantage of the Civic's safety feature that disables the ability to pop the trunk from the lever next to the driver's seat and instead requires an actual key to open the trunk, the thieves (incorrectly) thought that maybe there was something really good back there, and proceeded to rip through my back seats in order to gain access to the following:

  1. A yoga mat
  2. A pair of Abercrombie pants I hadn't worn in two years
  3. A variety of mix CDs I burned in 1999 and gave titles like "Trendy 90's Rock" and "Old Skool Hip Hop"
  4. Several Sharpie pens
  5. A Dolby Labs hoodie
  6. My tax return paperwork from 2003
  7. An empty box that the stereo in the dash originally came in
  8. A bottle of white wine
  9. A set of jumper cables
  10. Glitter

Exactly none of these items were taken (I took a bit of offense at the snub of my carefully selected Pinot Grigio), but my back seats were so violently damaged in the process of getting access to these items that my insurance company decided to total the car anyway. Apparently by locking my own trunk in an effort to deter thieves, I directly contributed to my own car's demise. Or at least that's what the insurance adjuster told me, right before I shoved him into oncoming traffic.

My new car is working out splendidly, except for that little warning sign next to the odometer that flashes "Maint. Req'd" at me every time I start it up. What on earth could that mean?

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Oh, that probably just means they didn't reset the maint light, you can probably google your car and find out how to do it yourself :)

Dennis D

It probably just means you are in need of regular oil change, filter that kind of stuff
Can't beleave they didn't take the Wine lol.


Probably nothing but if you have a friend who is into auto-tech they might have a way to plug into the cars computer and get information that a mechanic would charge $35-$75 to get it.


If it's any consolation I would've stolen everything but the glitter. By the way: GLITTER???


Take it to AutoZone, they'll run a test to tell you what your car needs. Cars are still not smart enough to say exactly what it needs. :/

I guess they didn't care about their health and appearance if they left the yoga mat and glitter.


I think it means "Drive as fast as possible and congratulations, your car doesn't need another drop of oil for at least 7,500 miles."


This post made me laugh (in a good way)! I love the subtle humour in your writing.


I have the fix for your problem.......electrical tape!!!!!


The light just means you need an oil change. I'm a mechanic and see it all the time, when you get an oil change they'll reset it for you.


Ummm ... glitter? ... (nah, methinks I'll keep any enquires to meself!)


disconnect the negative battery cable for about 3 minutes. That should reset the trouble code as well.


I have got a Honda and that same light popped up on mine too. Doesn't really mean much, as long as the dealership did a full tuneup on the car or inspected it correctly. The net time you go get your oil changed, ask them to reset it for you. They did it for me.


I thought only strippers wore glitter? I don't know for sure.


I thought only strippers wore glitter? I don't know for sure.

Ed Venture

They went to the trouble of ripping through the seats? Had to be young kids. Any respectable thief would have just popped the trunk lock and ran off with the prized yoga mat. Then again, any respectable thief wouldn't have swiped a '95 Honda unless they needed the parts.


Hold down your odometer trip button with the ignition off. While holding the button, Turn the ignition key on. Keep holding the button until the light goes off. All fixed. Honda has that light come on at regular mileage intervals to remind you about normally scheduled maintenance.


Wow, sucks about the old car but at least you got a new(er) one! Hopefully the light is nothing too serious. I hate when those light up!


Sarah, can we get back to the black beans topic...LOL.


Sarah I was reading through your missive when I hit the part about the white wine; it's been pretty hot these last few days and that's exactly what I could use. I think I'm going out right now and get me a box. (I hope there's a 1995 Honda Civic coupe nearby. I'm going to skip the stealing part. I mean seriously WHO would steal a 95 civic? ) .


Dude, I'll totally buy that totaled Civic!! Back seats are so overrated!!!


sad things happen, but what can we do but move on? On the plus side the murder of your adjuster made alot of people happy. =] lol.

Now...the glitter....what arts and crafts projects have you been doing without me?!?! I feel so left out now.


Interesting article, more along the lines of your trip blog which I much enjoyed. The photos / commentary of the trip were great. They gave me a glimpse of places and situations I'll never get to experience. Thanks for that fine work. As for the Honda, well it's just property, it's gone to Honda Heaven and will probably re-incarnate as a soda can sometime soon. Good you got the jumper cables back, being a civic fan and all :-)

Kent Goldings

That light is on all newer Hondas. It comes on every few dozen thousand miles. Look in the owners manual to see how to shut it off.


Apparently Hondas are one of the most stolen cars. Maybe you can install a security system in your new one. The one I had in one of my cars would cut off the fuel system if you didn't shut alarm.


#1 get your car serviced then if the indicator still comes on take a key and insert it into the plastic opening (which is really a reset button) on your dash near your speedometer. This will reset everything and if you really have a problem the indicator will tell you......in time.


My car was totaled by a moron who ran the light. I don't know what I would do if my car had been stolen. The people on this planet are just unbelievable and this world is becoming such a scary place.


The most valuable thing there was the personal information on your tax return. You should monitor your credit report, if you're not already.

Dennis D

Don't see that as a problem as a 2 bit car thief wouldn't have enough intelligence to understand whats on a tax return lol.


Your Blog was much more interesting when you were unemployed.

Walter C.

Ha Ha...so back in 99 someone could have pulled up next to you at a red light and watched you rap along to "The Message" or "Paul Revere"? Now that's awesome.


Civics and accords and theft magnets in Cali.


Where is homegirl at? Sarah, we need you back on your blog! What are you up too these days!!!! : (


If you saw that tax return for 2003 you'll know why we left the car parked. We felt sorry for her. She needs the money for sure!


>My tax return paperwork from 2003
You're lucky they didn't take that and open up a few charge cards with the SSN. Time to clean that trunk.


Sarah, new job has you a little lax on the blog updates huh?
We miss you.


I have good news for you. Since you are in So Cal you have access to the best Honda mechanic in the country. Honda Bob. Nosillacast at Podfeet can fill you in on the details. Check this link for example:



I need to brush up on geography because I just realized you aren't in So Cal! Sorry about that. But it's a great blog for techies anyway, and for those that happen to own a honda in So cal!

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