Tag Archives: GM

So long, Rosie Radio…

OK, I don’t know about y’all, but, I was still mourning the loss of Oprah (I’ll talk more about that in another post), so, when I heard that another one of my old standby’s, Rosie O’Donnell, was ending her daily talk show on SiriusXM radio this afternoon, well, I just about broke down.

I mean, hello? Who is a self-respecting SAHD — Stay-at-home-Dad, for those of you unfamiliar with the parent code — supposed to turn to for much needed laughs, tears or whatever on a daily basis? Urgh, it’s almost enough to make me start watching Ellen again. Just kidding, I still hate that old scab.

But, back to someone I love. In case you hadn’t heard, Rosie is launching a new daily TV talk show on Oprah’s OWN network in the fall, so, she’s leaving for much greener pastures, but, that doesn’t mean I’m not gonna miss her.

I know Rosie Radio was only on SiriusXM for a year and a half, but, I listened to that show EVERY SINGLE DAY. Seriously, Rosie rocked. She was smart, funny, political, and best of all, Rosie and her cohorts could say whatever the hell they wanted because it was satellite radio. So, whoo-hoo, bring on the F-bombs, baby!

Anyway, SiriusXM is gonna be playing repeats of the show Monday thru Thursday and Rosie’s long-time Exec Producer Janette Barber is getting her own SiriusXM show on Fridays, so, that will help lesson the blow a bit. But, trust me, nothing will take the place of having Rosie and company chatting in your ear while you drive home from the park with a sleeping toddler. Ah, the memories…

Best of luck on your new gig, Rosie! We’ll miss you…

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Three-and-a-half weeks in a Chevy Malibu…

This past summer the brainiacs at GM announced a massive hybrid battery recall on their entire fleet of Saturn Green Line Hybrid vehicles and a few of their other branded hybrids as well. Now, that seems like an easy enough fix, right? Make some new batteries (22,500 to be exact) plop them into the hybrids in question and you’re good to go.

Well, GM being the bloated, gas-guzzling dinosaur-of-a-car company that they are, it was anything but easy. We put our names on a replacement battery waiting list at our old Saturn dealer back in August — we had to switch to a new GM-certified repair shop when our beloved Galpin Saturn closed — and just now had the issue repaired. Yep, I said, August, as in, four months ago!

Initially, the wait was fine, I mean, the car ran great and we didn’t have any problems to speak of, so, we were cool sitting on the waiting list at Galpin. But when the “check engine light” began to flash every time we started the car, we began to worry. And when the “service hybrid system” light came on and the entire hybrid system stopped working while driving to the mall one day, well, we knew it was time to take the Chenbot to the doctor.

What we didn’t know was that it would take three-and-a-half weeks to get our car back. The guy at the new dealership told me to remove: “everything of value out of the car”, so, I guess I shoulda known we were in for a long haul, but, almost a month without our car? Come on!

Sure, we had a rental car (the dreaded, oldie-magnet Malibu mentioned above) and it was totally paid for, but, seriously GM, how long does it take to whip up a new batch of 22,500 hybrid batteries?

The answer of course, is, FOREVER. According to what I’ve read online, we are actually one of the lucky ones as some people have been waiting even longer for a battery. And many drivers of older Saturn hybrids (the recall dates back to any 2007 models) don’t even get a rental car, so, they’re like, doubly screwed!

And the worse thing is that there has been virtually no news coverage of this latest GM blunder-fest anywhere…not even a local news blurb. I’m sure nobody cares about Saturns anymore, but, wow, where’s crazy old Ralph Nader when you really need him, man?

Anyway, we are finally back in our beautiful Vue and it seems to be running fine, but, before I go, I just wanted to run some numbers by you. Between the cost of our rental car ($950) and the replacement battery ($1050) GM paid out over $2000 last month, just for us. Multiply that figure by every car involved in the recall and GM will have spent a staggering $45 million dollars on this mess.

Now, if they were just another lame, backwards-thinking car company with one foot in the grave, that would be one thing, but, GM, with its long, rich history of incompetence and mismanagement, received over $52 billion of tax-payer funded dollars in the recent bailout. That’s right, amigos, we paid $52 billion for GM’s mistakes, and, hot on the heels of that epic failure, they screw up again with this costly hybrid battery recall? Insanity!

So, hang in their fellow Saturn hybrid owners, your day (and battery) will come…you know, eventually. And as for you, GM, well, you can suck it. Big time! Seriously, I kinda hate you guys…

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End of the road for Saturn…

You’ve probably already heard the sad news by now, but despite a valiant effort by the Penske Automotive Group it looks like our beloved Saturn Motors has finally reached the end of the road. Is it weird that Christine and I were almost in tears when we heard the news? Maybe, but who cares. We loved and will continue to love every single Saturn we’ve ever leased or owned…

End of the road for Saturn Motors...

And as the very proud owners of a 2004 Saturn Ion named Mr. Sark and a 2009 Hybrid Vue we recently christened,  Chenbot, we can very safely say that Saturn was the coolest, most forward-thinking car company ever.

Long live the great and mighty spirit of Saturn Motors!

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The Horseless Carriage @ Galpin Motors

Been meaning to blog about this place since Christine and I started the blog, but, as you know, we’ve been kinda busy, so, time and time again, the first-rate grub at the Horseless Carriage has fallen by the wayside. Well, that all ends today!

The first restuarant ever to open inside a working car dealership, the Horseless Carriage has been serving up the best diner food in the San Fernando Valley to the patrons of the legendary Galpin Motors since 1966. Yep, the Carriage is actually three years older than I am…crazy!

Galpin #3

Galpin #1

Christine and I discovered this hidden gem of a restaurant when we bought our first Saturn back in 1996 and we have been coming here for breakfast and/or lunch every since. Located within walking distance from the cozy waiting room at the Saturn of the Valley service area, the Horseless Carriage has always been the one thing that makes long-ass trips to the land of Galpin for tune-ups or oil changes bearable.

And though just about everything on their vast menu is amazing, I gotta tell ya, I have ordered the exact same thing every time I go for the past thirteen years…the pork chops and eggs with buttermilk biscuits and country gravy. I know it sounds boring, but when you find something you love, you stick with it. And, man alive, do I loves me that breakfast!

I mean, seriously, have you ever seen finer grill marks on pork chops? Hell to the no! And that’s only part of the meal…I didn’t even take a picture of the tasty, but decidedly unphotogenic, biscuits and gravy! And best of all, that hearty heart attack on a plate sets you back a paltry $10.65. Top that Denny’s!

Galpin #4

Galpin #5

But that steal of a meal is only one of the many fantastic items on the menu. Christine usually orders the traditional Club Sandwich (which is great!) but the last time we went, she opted for the Horseless Carriage Triple Decker Club California-Style, pictured above.

Substituting pastrami for bacon and adding a heaping wedge of avocado, this sandwich was so good, I just might ditch my biscuits and gravy goodness and get one for myself next time. Seriously, that sandwich was heaven with a side of fries, amigos…fantastic!

And even though one of the waitresses there looks and often acts kinda scary-mean — you know who you are, blondie! — for the most part, the staff is made up of really sweet career waitresses who keep your coffee and water filled like nobody’s business. And, honestly, anyone who can put up with my fat ass reading the paper at one of their best booths for two hours while I wait for my car to be serviced is OK in my book.

Galpin #2

So, if you’re looking for a primo meal that will stick to your ribs while you browse the sprawling Galpin acrerage — they have seperate, swanky-ass showrooms for Fords, Saturns, Mazdas, Aston Martins, Volvos and Jaguars! — or get your car serviced, check out the fine food at the Horseless Carriage. You might be there a while, but you sure as shit won’t leave hungry!


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