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Carol Perkins: Only in a small town

A column for windshield wiper control challenged drivers, who face the Carol & Susan challenge: How can we stop these things? Ditto for heated seats, GPS Navigation systems, automatic trunk lifts. But there's an advanttage with living in a small town, writer says: At least when it comes to cars, we know to turn to our local car experts or whomever is passing by us at the time. Only in a small town."
Next earlier column: Carol Perkins: Carol Perkins: Getting ready for The Pumpkin Festival Posted September 28 2014

By Carol Perkins (c)

We couldn't get the things off. Susan and I were headed to 99.1 in Horse Cave to do our show on Tuesday and Susan was driving her daughter's car. It had been raining very slightly, so her windshield wipers were coming on and off intermittently. The rain stopped but we couldn't figure out how to turn off the wipers.

Having just left the Edmonton State Bank drive-thru, we took a side street to Highway 68, which would put us near Jody Curry's Used Cars, LLC. "If Jody is outside, he can tell us how to turn these things off," I suggested to Susan. By then the window was so dry the wipers were scrapping across the glass. Too much of that would certainly be annoying all the way to Horse Cave.

"We'll pull in over here at the Marathon and maybe Danny (the owner) can stop the things," Susan said.

A younger man knew how to stop them

Danny wasn't in sight, but a woman was standing near the door so we drove up close and I stuck my head out the window and asked, "Could you help us get our windshield wipers off?" She came around and looked through the window but seemed as puzzled as we were. Soon a young man leaned through the opening and quickly gave Susan a windshield wiper lesson. "You turn the lever up and down like a signal. The further down, the faster they go." Both of us felt pretty dumb.

Heated seats are a puzzle

Some of the vehicles I have driven require knowledge beyond mine to operate all the gadgets. Bluetooth? Yes, I have Bluetooth capabilities, but have no clue how to set this up. After I set it up, I'm not sure I want to drive down the highway talking to what would appear to be myself. Heated seats even puzzle me. Many times I have thought I was turning on my side only to hear Guy say, "Why is my seat hot?" I don't like automatic heat either. Guy thinks if the temperature is set on automatic it should not be touched. On the way to church Sunday I was breaking out in a sweat. "Is the heat on?"

"No, it is set on automatic." That means no matter if sweat is popping out or I am freezing, the control is not going to be moved. He thinks the automatic device controls my internal thermometer.

Automatic trunk lift has a mind of its own

Speaking of automatic, my car has an automatic trunk lift and when it works, it is handy. However, it has a mind of its own and when it doesn't work and I have to force it up manually, it is like lifting dead weight. "We need to see about that," I remind Guy. We need to means he needs to!

Neither writer or husband can understand onscreen navigation

When I bought my vehicle I was determined to have onscreen navigation. I don't know why because I never used the one I had in my other car, but this was a newer version and would be more up-to-date. The problem is that neither Guy nor I can understand the settings so we gave up and the GPS on our phones. It also has a backup camera, but I don't trust it. If I am backing straight back, it works great but it doesn't work with cars whipping around my side in parking lots.

Sometimes I think we have too many gadgets

Sometimes I think we have too many gadgets on our cars that confuse what should be the simple task of driving. I never knew of reclining seats, cup holders, phone chargers and UBS plug-ins, radio controls on steering wheels, or even dimmer lights that weren't in the floorboard when I was a teen. We rolled our windows up and down, signaled with a straight arm out the window for a left turn and made a half arm/L motion to make a right turn. The radio had one dial and only a few stations. The glove box was deep enough to hold lunch and the spare tire was in the trunk or on the back of the car not under it.

Windshield wipers were so simple to use when they were one-speed

As for windshield wipers, they were simple to use with only one speed. That could be a metaphor for a Susan and me-simple with one speed. At least when it comes to cars, we know to turn to our local car experts or whomever is passing by us at the time. Only in a small town. - CAROL PERKINS
(Last week I incorrectly identified the lady at the Marathon who helped Susan and me with our windshield wipers as the wife of the owner. I apologize for that mistake. - Carol Perkins) Carol Perkins, the writer, is an author, weekly radio talk show Host on The Hoss, 99.1 FM, on the Tuesdays at 10amCT, Susan (Chambers) & Carol (Perkins) Unscripted and is owner of Main Street Screenprinting PO Box 1051 601 S. Main Street Edmonton, KY 42120 270-432-3152 270-670-4913

This story was posted on 2014-10-09 07:41:18
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