September 23, 2018

Russia Nesting Squalls…by Will Durst

Whoever said that a week in politics can be a lifetime, was living so far in the past, they probably have a drawer full of sock garters. Today, in the Land of Trump that time frame has been compressed to an hour. And considering the stormy week we just survived, every one of us ought to have grey hair, be eligible to collect three or four social security checks and have all our earthly possessions catalogued in a living will. Instead of luxuriating in the rave reviews following his speech to Congress that the 45th President recited in his newly…

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Remember When People Used to Say…

(1) “I’ll tell you one thing, if things keep going the way they are, it’s going to be impossible to buy a week’s groceries for $20.00.” (2) “Have you seen the new cars coming out next year? It won’t be long when $5,000 will only buy a used one.” (3) “If cigarettes keep going up in price, I’m going to quit. A quarter a pack is ridiculous.” (4) “Did you hear the post office might charge a dime to mail a letter?” (5) “If they raise the minimum wage to $1, nobody will be able to hire help.” (6) “When…

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Automotive Breakdown . . . by Denny Mandeville

Cliff hanger ended! I actually have a couple of customers ask to be kept advised when my wife made her mind up and bought the car. The BEST car, I might add. According to her, it is a Lincoln MK Z. She had been making phone calls to me all Friday afternoon (February 13th) making me a bit suspicious as to what, exactly, was going on, but she was a bit evasive. By 6 o’clock the questions were more direct, and getting more expensive- but it was her money. Yeah, yeah, I know- what’s hers is hers, and what’s mine…

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Automotive Breakdown . . . by Denny Mandeville

Expert – a person who knows more than the average person about something. To be more exact, using Noah’s definition; an expert is one who has special knowledge or skill in a subject or area. Another definition of expert is a person who is paid a sum of money to support your view, or claim, usually in court. An expert may be a person wearing a bow tie, carrying a briefcase and 50 miles from home. My personal favorite- an expert is a has-been-under-pressure. Nor should we forget every group’s resident expert. Theoretically, I am an expert in auto repair…

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Automotive Breakdown . . . by Denny Mandeville

ATTENTION PEOPLE! There is NO “MACHINE” that can be hooked up, connected to, or plugged into your car and tell “what is wrong with it”. Sorry, but NO ONE has been able to design, manufacture, or (more importantly) economically market such a device. This idea seemed to have come about in the late 1980s when OBD I (On-board Diagnostics, version 1) was introduced and the car dealers spent marketing money in an attempt to tout the new emissions laws and put them in favorable light, aided and abetted by the Feds. Unfortunately, while it was an important step in the…

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Automotive Breakdown . . . by Denny Mandeville,

The other day, a few acquaintances and friends of a certain hair color (or, technically, lack of color, and, sometimes lack of hair as well) were playing one-up-man-ship in past car stories. You know the game; do-you-remember, and how close to the truth can you play without being caught in an outright fib. I won, when I topped them with the in-car record player. Yeah – there actually was such a device. Just as CD’s replaced cassettes, and cassettes had replaced 8-Track, the granddaddy of them all was the in-car record player. Check it out- Chrysler had it as an…

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Automotive Breakdown . . . by Denny Mandeville

Q. Can the wrong viscosity oil cause the Check Engine light to come on? A. Yes it can. Always follow the manufacturer’s viscosity recommendations in your owner’s manual or the markings located on the oil fill cap. Modern engines are designed to use lower viscosity oil, usually in the 5W-20, 5W-30, even 0W-20 ratings. Many, if not most, modern engines use variable valve timing (VVT), a system of changing the position of a camshaft for better emissions and more power. The camshaft position is changed by oil pressure in a special piston called a cam phaser. The wrong oil and…

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Automotive Breakdown . . . by Denny Mandeville

As long as we are on the “do you remember” kick- and may be on it for awhile as I relive the more  carefree days of high school and the “California Dreamin’” days. Early 1960s high school in rural New York were the days of hot cars, wanna be hot cars, and the family sedan driven like it was a hot car. Cars you could buy from the dealer, or cars built by the owners. This was also in the days when the Feds and state governments were by-passing the little towns with the better built highways. Of course, to…

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Automotive Beakdown by Denny Mandeville

The other day a few auto centered terms came up that would only be understood by those of a certain age- those common terms that have just quietly slipped away. Fender Skirts, and the ultimate skirt; the Cruiser Skirt. You may know of, or had, fender skirts, but the real test is “Cruiser Skirt”. Give up, or don’t know?  They were an extra long skirt that went to the rear bumper giving the area behind the rear tire that lowered, ‘slip-stream’ look. They went along with glass packs and fox tails hung from the rear mount antenna for the AM…

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Marry Your Sister’s Ex?

Dear Frankly, I am involved with my sister’s ex. We are in love and have recently moved in together. I am hoping our relationship be accepted by our families. I am worried about hurting my sister’s feelings. We found out that it is legal to marry each other here. He has asked and I want to. I guess what I’ve been looking for is someone’s blessing. My sister left the marriage and I cannot help that things worked out this way. Is there any way I can overcome our family issues? Confused Carla Dear Confused, When would it not be…

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Automotive Breakdown… by Denny Mandeville, Owner/Canyon Automotive, Sedona

People often ask about our “GREEN SHOP” certification and what does it mean?  Green Shop is a program sponsored by both the Automotive Service Association Arizona and the Arizona Department of Environmental Quality to promote the best business practices for controlling, and reducing, the waste stream. In this case waste stream is not a running water type stream, but the flow of waste material that can wind up in the water through landfills and run off. A business alters the way it normally handles its waste and energy needs to be “green”, and by reducing our waste stream, reducing other…

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Bisexual Boyfriend

Dear Frankly, My boyfriend, who I have been dating for three years, has just told me that he is bisexual. He said that he has never told anyone else and has hidden it from me until now. I cried for a week. I have many self-esteem problems already. He also said that if he were in my shoes, he would probably end the relationship. However, he’s glad I haven’t ended it and promises to be true. I am so confused with no one to talk to. What should I do? Confounded Connie Dear Confounded, Well, if that doesn’t beat all….

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A Deceiving Friendship

Dear Frankly, I was in a relationship that ended a month ago. The cause was her cheating, lying and deceiving me for a long time. I had no idea and it all came as a shock to me. Through all the pain I have suffered, I have really tried to be her friend and understand why she hurt me. But even now it has been me trying to keep contact with her and keep a “friendship” alive. I feel like maybe I’m doing this so that I don’t feel like I wasted over a year with her. Please help. Caring…

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Automotive Breakdown by Denny Mandeville

If anyone has visited my shop these past few months they have seen the red 1962 Thunderbird convertible that has resided therein as I have been performing a series of repairs to this car. I have been disturbed to find out I remember far more about this car than I ought to, considering how many years it has been since I actually owned, or worked on, 1960’s cars. As I was doing an initial interview, with the customer, he noted the chrome acorn nuts on the visible head bolts, asking whether this was factory, or add-on? I made the comment…

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Online Lying

Dear Frankly, I need some advice. I answered an online personal ad, but lied about a few things–like my age, education, hobbies, weight, job and income level. Now I am supposed to meet this woman for a drink at a local watering hole. We will each be carrying a white rose for identification. This gal sounded so interesting and her profile and pictures looked so good, I just had to meet her. I’m afraid she is going to be disappointed and run out before she gets a chance to find the real me. Misleading Marv Dear Misleading, I’m not sure…

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Spilled Milk

Dear Frankly, I have really gotten myself into a quandary. About a year ago I went to a bar with some girlfriends. I danced with a guy and had a great time. I started going back to the bar by myself to see if he was there. He was. After a couple of weeks he and I started doing more than just dancing. Months later, we agreed to put our relationship on ice. How do I get over an affair I should not have had in the first place? He and I are both married. I run into him all…

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Automotive Breakdown

“What does that little light mean?” or similar questions are fielded each day by repair shops all over the nation. It stems from a combination of two things; some engineer’s idea of a cute pictograph and/or the least read book in the world- the owner’s manual. Last year Insurance.com commissioned a survey of 2000 drivers 18 years old and older asking the drivers to identify ten instrument panel warning lights. Here is a sample of the list with the percentage of incorrect guesses because the driver did not understand what was trying to be conveyed: Tire Pressure Monitoring (TPM)-49% Brake…

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The Making of a Woman’s Dream

Dear Frankly, I am a slightly built, light skinned, baby faced, balding teacher and not exactly a classic “woman’s dream.” I get along with women and have many women friends. They appreciate my humor, intelligence and understanding nature, yet it is rare when one of them shows an “attraction” towards me. For the past two years, I have been dateless and celibate. I’m beginning to experience desperation. Is it possible for a man my age (48) to find a relationship with a woman 20 years younger? Desperate Dave Dear Desperate, Learn to dance? Dress hip? A teacher’s salary? My fourth…

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Back To the Future, Part I

Back to the Future, part whatever.  Do you remember back to the 50s and/or 60s, reading about the future of the automobile, especially in Popular Mechanics? According to the predictions the driver’s only function would be to get the family car from the driveway to the main street, then sensors imbedded in the highway would take over allowing the driver to shave, take a shower, play cards with the passengers, or whatever else the driver fancied requiring no attention to the actual driving (not that that is much different from today). The car, and road, of the future would keep…

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Automotive Breakdown… by Denny Mandeville, Owner/Canyon Automotive, Sedona

“Maintenance Free”, another way of saying “pay me now, or pay me later”. Maintenance free is also another term for deferred replacement, and as many of us have found out, later is often more expensive and inconvenient. In the effort to make automobile ownership more attractive the manufacturers are trying to sell convenience by reducing the amount of time a new car owner is going to be separated from the car- at least through the warranty period. By using such methods as the “change oil” light in the driver information screen, the manufacturers are removing the owner from the responsibility…

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