Just what I needed...
I had a "near accident" on the way home from work today. I was going down Moreland Ave when the car in the left lane decided to quickly "merge" into the right lane. Problem was, I was in the space that he was trying to merge in to. I swerved to the right to avoid being hit-- but in that process, I ran over a curb. The other guy didn't hit me, but the curb caused a lot of damage to my tires-- I had two blowouts and two bent rims on the passenger side. I pulled into the Exxon station and contemplated what to do. I was about to call Midtown Tire and request a tow truck. But suddenly a guy came by and told me that there was a tire shop right behind the Exxon station.
I drove my car into the lot-- not really driving, more like stumbling in on 2 good tires and two flat tires with bent rims. The proprietor of the shop came right out to the car and went to work. There was no exchange of greetings; no diagnosis; no estimates. He jacked my car up and removed the tires and went to work. Within a few minutes, he had the rear rim bent back into shape and patched the tire. The front tire was a bigger problem. he spent about two hours trying to bend the rim back into shape. He would've spent the rest of the night trying to fix the rim, but as I watched him bang at it with a big hammer (trying to force the rim to conform to the tire) I decided it would probably be best to just put the spare (donut) tire on. I wouldn't have felt safe driving on his rigged version of a tire anyway.
The "tire shop" was the most ghetto place I've ever conducted business. The waiting room was a lawn chair in the parking lot. There was a magazine in the chair-- a high fashion, high priced clothing catalog geared towards black men. I thumbed through it and found a couple of things that I liked-- shoes, belts, sweaters. However, the prices were through the roof-- who would pay $298 for a belt???
Anyway-- I digress! After repairing the rear rim, patching the rear tire, spending 2 hours trying to repair the front rim and installing the spare tire, Grease Monkey Joe came to me with his price of $35. I was amazed! I gave him a $50 bill and told him to keep the change. I probably should've given him more for his efforts. I still don't feel safe driving in my car with the rigged up rim job, and the donut tire that I'm not sure he tightened all the way, so I'll have to go over to Midtown Tire tomorrow at some point and try to get 2 new rims and tires. I know it'll be several hundred dollars (not including the two new hubcaps I'll have to buy) to repair the damage. Great timing, huh? A couple of weeks before Christmas and I'll be spending my money on car repairs. But, on the bright side-- I didn't have a wreck, no one was injured. But... it sucks!