A Deadly Adventure Worth 20 Bucks.

Iris’ view every single day... I’m a bit jealous...
Iris’ view every single day... I’m a bit jealous...
Photo: Me

Ok, maybe not deadly, but going out in public in Florida on the 4th of July isn’t exactly ideal.

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I woke up this morning to a knock on my bedroom door. My roommate asked if I had a toilet plunger, which I didn’t. Of all the things not to have when you need them the most, a plunger may be the worst.

Well, my roommate has work so he couldn’t go out and get one, so he paid me 20 bucks to do it. All I had to do was go to the Walmart grocery store, which is full of people all the time and who’s staff visibly do not give a —— and buy one...

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20 bucks is 20 bucks, so I went. Besides, it was a good excuse to make sure my car wasn’t sitting in that parking spot for too long.

Interior Crocodile Aligator.
Interior Crocodile Aligator.
Photo: Me
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Now, because I’m a sentimental sucker, I’ve decorated the inside of my car with various things, each and every one with some sort of meaning behind it, that make the inside of the car feel more like my happy place. If any of you do the same I’d love to see it, but I thought it’d be fun to show you all the little things I’ve hung onto.

White Squishy
White Squishy
Photo: Me
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Yellow Squishy
Yellow Squishy
Photo: Me

Both of my parents work in healthcare, specifically in trying to reform it (bless their souls), and these little squishy guys were the free handouts they’d get from the booths at this big healthcare convention they’d go to called HIMSS. I’d be with my grandmother for a week or so and when they got back it was always fun to get one of these. I think the white one was from my dad and the yellow one from my mom, so it’s nice that both of them are embodied into the cabin.

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But neither of these squishies came the way they look, oh no. These are modified squishies.

The Monsters Inc. pin was given to me by my best friend/worst enemy. I didn’t want to wear it, so I stuck it into the foam. The button nose on the yellow one ended up in my car one way or another. I never wear anything with buttons, so how it got there is a mystery. All I know is I found it while cleaning the car and had some gorilla glue. The rest is history.

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Oh Brother...
Oh Brother...
Photo: Me

I never got into the Peanuts comics (although the movies, both old and new, are awesome), me and my dad are more Calvin and Hobbes people. But I got this while I was working at a summer camp (which was an amazing job). The pool there had a lost and found and the 1st graders I was with would go there in case they forgot their goggles and needed a pair, or were looking for a toy. I found this little guy in there, and there weren’t any company policies saying staff couldn’t take from the lost and found... so I took it.

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This was one of the first decorations to end up in the car, and I’m fairly certain it’s what caused the snowball effect that led to my charismatically cluttered cabin.

Buzz.
Buzz.
Photo: Me
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This little guy was gifted to me by my grandmother (mom’s mom), who calls herself “The Queen of the Bees” or “GrandBee” for short. She’s quite a character, and she’s also the one who’d babysit me while my parents were gone on those long healthcare trips (it all ties together). She has a whole collection of memorobeelia, but this little guy is my piece of the pie.

The Bob Marley Rock.
The Bob Marley Rock.
Photo: Me
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This rock isn’t super sentimental, but it’s a lovely reminder to be happy (even though that’s real hard in these trying times. A girl (who I had a massive crush on) had a birthday party and painted a bunch of rocks for the guests (the equivalent of goodie bags but for us mature teenagers who like rocks). It was yellow and lovely and gave my good vibes every time I saw it, and it still does.

Something Rotten...
Something Rotten...
Photo: Me
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Speaking of yellow, this is a lemon... or maybe I should say it WAS a lemon. Around thanksgiving of last year I got super sick. Throwing up and all that jazz. And since this was the first time I’d been sick away from home and my parent, who were in a whole different state, I had to go to the store sick and pick up everything I needed for soup, then make the soup myself. (That was not a fun trip, and I came very close to vomiting in my car).

The ingredients were things like ginger and chicken broth and kale and a bunch of other healthy stuff, along with this lemon. Well, when I got home and unloaded my stuff I noticed a distinct lack of lemon. I knew I bought it, I scanned it myself, but it was nowhere to be found. I was too sick to spend time worrying about it, so I just made the soup without lemons... and it was really good.

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Fast forward to around Christmas and I’m loading up a suitcase into my car at 5am. I’m flying up to MD from FL to spend Christmas with my parents, and I’m super excited (I love my family and I love to fly. Win win) when lo and behold this lemon resurfaces. It’s still a bit squishy, but definitely not edible. I could’ve just thrown it away, but again, I’m sentimental.

So, if you ever wondered what happens to a lemon if it’s left in a car in the Florida heat, it turns into a stale, superlight, dried out rock. It doesn’t smell or attract bugs either, not a single drop of juice is left in the thing.

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A golf ball.
A golf ball.
Photo: Me

Right beside the lemon is this golf ball, which is one of the only non-yellow decorations in the car (everything else is yellow or white because it matches the beige seating and contrasts nicely with the black accents).

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Me and my best friends went mini golfing years ago, maybe my sophomore year of highschool. The place was fenced off so that people couldn’t climb into the area, which made the place feel a bit like a prison but oh well. We were about halfway through our game and standing near the fence. I’m up to swing when a glass bottle flies up and over the fence, shattering at my feet. I didn’t see it until it landed, and nearly had a heart attack.

Had I been a couple inches closer to the hole, I would’ve been in a hospital that day. My friend with anger management issues tried to climb the fence and go after the guy. My best pal helped me calm down (I was seriously shaken), and the other two, more responsible pals went to management.

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Oddly enough, the bottle was a starbucks bottle... a beer bottle would’ve made sense...

This cost me an arm and a leg...
This cost me an arm and a leg...
Photo: Me
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This is one of my favorite additions to the car. When I’m not thinking about cars, playing video games, or writing short stories, I like filmmaking. It’s what I originally went to college to do, though I ended up switching to a creative writing degree (a bold move).

Anyways, this arm is from a short film I made about a ghost in his home, which was co-directed by the buddy of mine who gave me the Monsters Inc. pin (full circle). It used to be apart of a full body skeleton, but as filming went on he fell apart limb by limb. I ended up keeping the left arm and the head, my buddy kept the rest.

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If you’d like to watch the short film I’ll leave this here. It’s a novice attempt at being professional, but it has it’s moments.

The story I tell first time passengers is that I got the arm from the last person who tried to change the radio station... it’s usually followed by an awkward silence... and then I tell them the real story...

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Still... don’t mess with my music.

Something Seriously Special
Something Seriously Special
Photo: Me
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The final, oldest, and most sentimental artifact in the car are these fuzzy dice. I got them from my other grandmother (dad’s mom) when I was about 11 years old. She had no idea how old I actually was and assumed that I could drive a car when, in fact, I could not. Her letter even said to put these in my car for good luck, which I told her I would’ve done... if I had a car.

Instead, I put them on my bike handlebar, and hung onto them for years until I finally got my first car (this car).

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By this point, she was in her last days, and had a pretty severe case of dementia. I was one of the first family members to leave her memory, which was sad because Sonia was apparently one of the witties members of my sarcastic family. I rarely got to see that wit in action, and the few things I remember are fuzzy now.

She passed away just over a year ago, but I still got a piece of her soul in these dice. This was the very first thing to go in the car, and it went in immediately after I bought it.

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Me, ready to charge into battle, with my mask made of duct tape, a pillow case, and some rubber bands (it fits my face insanely well though... and if the shoe fits... or... if the mask fits...)
Me, ready to charge into battle, with my mask made of duct tape, a pillow case, and some rubber bands (it fits my face insanely well though... and if the shoe fits... or... if the mask fits...)
Photo: Me

So there you go. That’s the full interior tour of my TSX Wagon. It actually has a small, sentimental dent in it too, kind of like Tow Mater from Cars, but that’s a story for another day.

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In the meantime, I’ll be checking my vitals regularly, making sure I don’t have Covid. I’m driving back to MD for a week on the 25th, I wouldn’t want to miss that trip because I’m sick.

Take care folks.

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