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(My Fox Orlando)   Would-be carjackers to their victim: "What's this third pedal for?"   ( myfoxorlando.com) divider line
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17525 clicks; posted to Main » on 29 Jan 2013 at 2:49 PM (5 years ago)   |   Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»

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2013-01-29 02:53:22 PM  
13 votes:
The automatic transmission was the first step in the downfall of western civilization.
2013-01-29 03:22:50 PM  
12 votes:
I'm pretty sure that's the only reason my car wasn't stolen when I lived in a sketchy place one summer for one of my college internships. My neighbors went through two cars in one summer, and they weren't nice cars, either.

If anyone has time for a 'Cool Story, Sis' about stupid car mods, you can keep reading. If not, just scroll down to the next comment.

The smash-and-grab problem was so bad that I went to the junkyard and pulled the front off an old tape deck to shove in the console, then soldered some longer wires to the harness, ran them under the plastic cowling and actually managed to get the real head unit installed vertically in the center glovebox. You'd open the top, put in your CD or connect your MP3 player, and carry on, though I did have to cut some subtle vent holes and wire in a computer fan to keep the unit at a safe temperature in the summer and I actually used some metal straps and screws to really secure it in there so it couldn't just be yanked. Had to disassemble almost the entire middle of the interior to do it, but my time was worth nothing then and the radio had been a present from my Dad, so I really did not want it stolen.

I also used a Dremel to cut a cassette tape in half and glued it into the tape-deck-front so it looked like I was actually using it. Eventually I put the tape-deck-front onto hinges and used some Sugru and Krazy Glue to securely wedge a plastic box into the original radio's spot (it once contained frozen eclairs, but a good cleaning and some Krylon for Plastic made it work,) and so my car's wonderful radio security system consisted of the radio and the center glovebox being in opposite places. I also wired a little hidden switch into the ignition so even with the key, the car would only start if one knew exactly what switch to flip. Again, my time was worth nothing at this point, and the car wasn't worth much more, but I'd lose my job if I lost it and I had very little choice but to innovate.

After that was done, I'd just leave the car unlocked, since with an unlocked car, the chavs would search for items and then close it back up, whereas a locked car would get its' windows smashed. It was the guy I was dating at the time who came up with the best idea. Every week I would get a few dollars in ones as change, harvest some poison ivy with my gloves on and store the bills in a Ziploc bag of the oily leaves, then place them, again in gloves, into the dashboard glovebox by themselves.

For three weeks, the itchy-fied bills were, without fail, stolen, and I considered it a kind of $3-4 per week 'parking fee,' especially since the problem with the slumlord who owned the building leaving passive-aggressive notes about not having a lot permit stopped around that time. This guy was a real piece of work. Wouldn't sell me a parking permit because we only had a summer sublet and "those tags are expensive and your kind never return 'em!" (what kind, I always wondered, given that I was as white as he was,) wouldn't stop biatching about my not having one, and the one time he tried to have my car towed, I made a fake permit with Photoshop and the tow guy charged the slumlord for a false alarm. One day, though, my then-boyfriend put the bait bills in for me, not realizing that I typically removed the bills from the Ziploc of poison-ivy leaves before placing them in the car. He just threw in the whole bag, complete with three dollars and about three fistfuls of nicely shredded poison ivy leaves.

Funny thing, though; it was actually the teenage son of the slum lord who tried to smoke the leaves and wound up in the hospital. Apparently he had been tasked by his parent with going around to check for permit compliance, and along the way, this entitled little chav was the one robbing all the cars. So my $3-5 dollar investment and the 'shopped permit was apparently enough to keep a fifteen-year-old boy from ratting my poor little hoopty out to his loser dad. The kid went into the hospital the first week in August, and by the time they released him, we'd packed our stuff and fled into the night, never to darken the doors or drip oil on the parking lot again.

I always wonder how the kid explained himself, though. Considering the landlord refused to buy health insurance because it was a Commie scam and believed in paying cash for everything, two weeks in the hospital and a stint in intensive care probably had at least some disciplinary effect on that rotten kid.

And the moral of the story is, 'don't try to smoke baggies of leaves you find in 1987 Hondas that do not belong to you.'
2013-01-29 03:11:21 PM  
4 votes:
Stick shifts are better for all the other drivers on the road because you can't use a cell phone or eat a taco whilst driving.
/2 cents
2013-01-29 03:21:54 PM  
3 votes:

tricycleracer: NASAM: My son just got his permit and I've been looking for a car for him. My three stipulations: $5k or less, 4 cylinder, and manual. Can't find anything anywhere.

No old GTIs or Miatas in your part of the world?

Miatas are great little cars. I'm on my second one. I convinced a friend that a Miata is the best possible choice for his teenage daughter (with the addition of a roll-bar). It's not actually a fast car, though it is nimble. It only seats two! The intelligence of teenagers is inversly proportional to the quantity of teenagers, so when in a car you want to keep their number to a minimum. Used Miatas in good shape are readily available and reasonably priced. Finally, despite the limitations, getting her a Miata makes you "the coolest dad EVAH!" At least for the next hour or so. Teens are fickle and have a short memory.
2013-01-29 02:59:09 PM  
3 votes:
My new car is a stick for these reasons:

1. I like driving a stick because it makes me feel like a racecar driver, even if I do drive like a non-senile granny.

2. The car was a lot cheaper than the model with automatic.

3. A friend told me her friend was carjacked by three Urban Yoots. They pushed her out of the car, grabbed her purse and were so flustered by it being a standard that they not only left her car, but the kid who had her purse gave it back to her.
2013-01-29 02:55:38 PM  
3 votes:

MindStalker: In before Manual/Automatic argument!

There is no argument. Unless you're both a spastic and an idiot, manual is better.
2013-01-29 02:52:30 PM  
3 votes:
I wonder if I could get a car outfitted with a 3-speed column shifter.  I could leave the keys in it all the time with zero worry.
2013-01-29 02:16:47 PM  
3 votes:
model-t-restore.comView Full Size
2013-01-29 07:05:28 PM  
2 votes:
Electric emergency brake makes no sense to me

bmwblog.comView Full Size

In an emergency I want to pull directly on a cable attached to the brake calipers, not rely on the electrical system
2013-01-29 06:41:13 PM  
2 votes:
sphotos-b.xx.fbcdn.netView Full Size
2013-01-29 03:45:32 PM  
2 votes:

mongbiohazard: Now for all other times, or driving somewhere without much traffic, manual is definitely the way to go. Better mileage, more power, more connection with/control of the car... They're just annoying to drive in heavy traffic.

On those rare occasions when I have to deal with Chicago rush-hour traffic (which means any time from 6AM to 10PM) I've found the best way to cope with it is to keep a cushion of space in front and keep my steady speed as close to average traffic speed as possible. I don't worry about somebody pulling into the space in front of me, because I'm not going to get there faster by riding someone else's back bumper. Let the others speed up and jam on the brakes over and over. More often than not, I'll catch right up to the driver in front just as he's starting his next speed-up/slow-down cycle.

It saves me a lot of wear and tear on the car, and a lot less stress on me.
2013-01-29 03:07:46 PM  
2 votes:
I miss my manual. They're great in the snow.
2013-01-29 03:01:48 PM  
2 votes:
I have owned manual and automatic transmissions and the pleasures of driving one or the other depend solely on the vehicle in which contained.
2013-01-29 08:10:50 PM  
1 vote:

gunther_bumpass: amquelbettamin: Satan's Bunny Slippers: Ok, having come home from work and perusing the thread, I have a question.

I'm a woman, who grew up driving stick shifts on everything. I'm very comfortable with any manual transmission, in any configuration, from cars to trucks to larger trucks to tractor trailers. I raced the quarter/king of the hill in my own car that I rebuilt from burned out frame up (seriously, I bought a burned out hulk of a 67 camaro when I was 14 so I could have it road ready by the time I could legally drive). And I won about as much as I lost.

I drive an automatic now. I choose to. Why does this make me less of a capable driver?

Because you're a woman?

Well she walked right into that one, didn't she?

yeah, I really should have expected that one. This is FARK, after all. :)

Been driving legally for 36 years, about 38 years total. No tickets, 2 accidents. First accident I was rear ended while legally stopped at a stoplight, second I rolled my truck, that's how they found my brain tumor. Passing out at 65 mph does have consequences. :) I've driven through blizzards in the mountains of Colorado, tornadoes in Missouri, and just every day "other people are stupid" stuff. I'm okay with people saying I can't drive because I'm a woman.
2013-01-29 05:43:01 PM  
1 vote:

pounddawg: The automatic transmission was the first step in the downfall of western civilization

Close, but not quite. The downfall of western civilization began with the disappearance of the manual spark advance lever.

Could you imagine how free and easy the roads would be if you still needed brains and coordination to drive a car?
2013-01-29 05:16:01 PM  
1 vote:
ev1.pair.comView Full Size

Push button shift FTW :-p
2013-01-29 05:13:18 PM  
1 vote:

fozziewazzi: amundb: I am starting to get pissed at the people behind me at long lights who beep at me. I like to put the car into neutral and take my foot off the clutch while waiting. As soon as that light turns green, people do not understand the extra 0.00000554 second delay it takes me to put my car into first and start beeping at me right away. Sorry I ruined you day because I don't drive a crappy automatic.

Whenever I get to even the slightest incline at a red light I put the Jeep into neutral and let it drift backwards for a foot or so. It's amazing how quickly people behind me snap to attention and back off.

Gawds, I hate those people... and driving frequently in San Francisco means lots of hills that I have to get into gear on. At least people seem used to that problem there and don't tend to tailgate too badly, but the tourists are obvious since they get right on your bumper.

My BIGGEST issue, though, are the people that will lay on your horns because you DARE to wait at a crosswalk before making a right turn because there's a pedestrian crossing in front of you. I just don't know if those people expect me to run the walker over or what...

/end rant
//half of them are taxi drivers
2013-01-29 04:49:08 PM  
1 vote:
Some of the newer manuals (MINI Cooper) have hill hold. Works better than an auto on a hill. The only problem is when I swap to the older MINI and forget the hill hold isn't there.
2013-01-29 04:44:59 PM  
1 vote:
It's got 6 forward and 2 reverse

in70mm.comView Full Size
2013-01-29 04:36:46 PM  
1 vote:

vodka: Plus driving on ice/snow/hills gets annoying real fast with a manual.

Never understood the problem driving in snow. Second gear, enough gas to get the wheels just spinning, sidestep the clutch. Steering wheel pointed in the direction you want to go, keep adjusting the throttle to keep the rest of the car reasonably behind that. It doesn't necessarily need to be straight. Throw in some e-brake in FWD cars for more control setting up for turns. Oh, and NA Miata's with a proper set of 4 snow tires are awesome in snow up to 4-5 inches. Perfect balance. You haven't lived till you've made a parking lot look like a helicopter landed upside down in a top down Miata.
2013-01-29 04:24:02 PM  
1 vote:
robertmanni.comView Full Size

"What da third peddle fo?
2013-01-29 04:18:54 PM  
1 vote:
MindStalker: dahmers love zombie: I wonder if I could get a car outfitted with a 3-speed column shifter. I could leave the keys in it all the time with zero worry.

Until the local Nursing Home escape discovers it.

Or worse
encrypted-tbn1.gstatic.comView Full Size
2013-01-29 03:52:57 PM  
1 vote:
I've always thought of the stereotypical Farker as someone who:

* drives a manual,
* drinks only microbrews, and
* runs Linux.

/1 out of 3
//long way to go to win the Fark Triple Crown
2013-01-29 03:43:45 PM  
1 vote:

Frozboz: While our '08 manual transmission Civic is in the shop this week (cracked block, woohoo!) I rented a 2012 Fiat 500 to get to work. It has this weird shift-if-you-want-to-or-don't shift transmission. It also has a "sport" auto mode. It's like cars today try too hard, or something.


FYI, your repair should be free at a dealership. If not, call your shop right now and stop the work.

This happened to my gf a few weeks ago. It turns out that a ton of Civics from around then all have engine blocks that are cracking. Honda knows it, and is avoiding a PR disaster by offering a free replacement (basically like an extended warranty on your engine for affected cars).

My gf got hers done at a local dealership, no charge, no questions asked.

Just making sure you know.

Incidentally, she also got a Fiat rental. Man, what a POS car that was.
2013-01-29 03:30:40 PM  
1 vote:
6-speed here.

/special ordered
//worth the wait
2013-01-29 03:27:07 PM  
1 vote:

Holocaust Agnostic: Manual transmission is superior to automatic
Typewriters are superior to computers
A pair of sticks is superior to a lighter
A compass and map are superior to GPS
Leaches and swamproot are superior to medicine.
Stupidity is superior to accurate analogy.

2013-01-29 03:25:10 PM  
1 vote:

tricycleracer: NASAM: My son just got his permit and I've been looking for a car for him. My three stipulations: $5k or less, 4 cylinder, and manual. Can't find anything anywhere.

No old GTIs or Miatas in your part of the world?

No,no.no those will encourage spirited driving by someone who has more testosterone than common sense. For new drives I'm fond of the boxy Volvos, wagon if you can find it. Build like a bunker, zero to sixty you can clock with a calendar and so ugly their friends won't be in it to distract them.
2013-01-29 03:21:13 PM  
1 vote:
I love my stick shift but they're going to be for hobbyists only in 20 years. A good modern dual clutch automatic can shift so fast you barely noticed that it happened so all the old problems about shifting at the wrong times, being in the wrong gear, lousy mileage from power loss through the slushbox, etc. will be gone. The manual is still lighter, cheaper, and mechanically simpler but that's it. A good automatic will out accelerate the same car with a manual now, they just shift so much faster than a driver is capable of.
2013-01-29 03:18:29 PM  
1 vote:
I insisted on teaching both my daughters how to drive a manual transmission. Now the oldest hates driving anything else, and the youngest never wants to touch another one again.

/don't know what went wrong with the youngest.
//I blame her mother.
///I guess they can carjack whomever they want now.
2013-01-29 03:17:53 PM  
1 vote:
6 speed manual transmission, biatches.
2013-01-29 03:16:18 PM  
1 vote:
i totalled my car when i was 16 and only had a permit. it was a stick. i wasnt hurt but the body dmg was more than the value of the car ($2k car with 60% cost to repair = 'totaled' designation according to my insurance in 1988). my mom freaked out and got an automatic. it was her car and we shared it til my senior year when i got my own (another automatic). that's fine. 10 years later I had my brother re-teach me the manual shift and bought one because it was ridiculously low-priced ($12k car for $8.5k--not a flood car or rental). i've never looked back since. i now own a manual truck and LOVE it. i will 99% probably never own an automatic again. i actually prefer my right hand staying occupied because I dont drive distracted--rarely eat in the car, dont take phone calls, etc. it's a lot of fun to drive, imo, and i pay way more attention on the road.
2013-01-29 03:09:49 PM  
1 vote:
Also, this is the opposite of the carjacking scene from The Philadelphia Experiment:

"Where the hell is the clutch?"
"It's an automatic!"
"What the hell is an automatic?"
2013-01-29 03:03:35 PM  
1 vote:
Apparently, you're not a golfer.

smhttp.14409.nexcesscdn.netView Full Size
2013-01-29 03:02:20 PM  
1 vote:
My wife and I should get discounts on our insurance for having manual transmissions!
2013-01-29 03:02:13 PM  
1 vote:

Wellon Dowd: MindStalker: In before Manual/Automatic argument!

There is no argument. Unless you're both a spastic and an idiot, manual is better.

Not in DC traffic it isn't. I own both, and for driving to and from work - and downtown during the day - automatic is hands down the way to go. Unfortunately my automatic gets about 15 mpg tops (supercharged V6 Buick Regal) and my manual gets around 26 mpg (4 cyl. Honda Accord), so I pretty much have to drive my manual around for work and it sucks.

Now for all other times, or driving somewhere without much traffic, manual is definitely the way to go. Better mileage, more power, more connection with/control of the car... They're just annoying to drive in heavy traffic.
2013-01-29 02:45:56 PM  
1 vote:

tricycleracer: [www.model-t-restore.com image 850x557]

Years ago I looked at picking up a restored Ford truck from 1915 or thereabouts and it took me 25 minutes just to get comfortable enough with it to drive it 1/2 mile.
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