Periscope Depth

everybody, move your feet and feel united

Winter has taken a bitter toll on my car. Well, winter plus neglect.

Stopping at Target one morning before work, I noticed that my front license plate hung from my front bumper by one thin bolt. I bought the cereal that I came in for and, not finding a bolt in the hardware aisle that I thought would work, some duct tape. That duct tape held my license plate on the front bumper for another four weeks.

Two weeks ago I hit a pothole on Mt. Auburn St with such jarring violence that I was amazed the tire hadn’t exploded. It hadn’t, but the wheel cover had flown off. It’s probably gracing some homeless person’s basket of treasures in Harvard Square today.

So: duct-taped license plate. Rusting, exposed hubcap.

I went to the Autozone near my office to get replacement parts on Tuesday. I gave some serious thought to the “diamond”-encrusted rims, sparkling merrily under the fluorescent lights. Sure, they only retailed for $39.99, but the value in irony alone would be through the roof! However, I could not in good conscience put fake diamond rims on one wheel of my car without also putting fake diamond bolts in my license plate frame, fake diamond buttons on the door locks, and a fake diamond cap on the tire pressure valve. And I’m not made of (fake) money.

Saturday afternoon I brought out many, many more tools than I needed and fixed my car. The license plate just needed a screwdriver to drive in the new bolt. The wheel cover didn’t even need tools. Once I puzzled out the instructions, I literally fit it over the hubcap and tapped it into place until it snapped on. Car maintenance – the hallmark of manhood! Just don’t ask me to change my own oil.

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Saturday evening I made good on my unintentional promise to see MOSAIC. MOSAIC crams a series of two- and three-minute sketches into a half-hour slot, ranging from high-concept mindfreaks to observational silliness and the occasional moment of sober honesty. Rachel V. and Lynne D. were in it, at their heartfelt hilarious best. I think their current roster of sketches are about two rehearsals and a bigger crowd away from being the most unorthodox thing going on at ImprovBoston. As it is, they were still a good time.

You should go see it. It’s not all somber commentary on growing old and airline security and vanishing privacy. Sometimes, it’s four people on stage, dancing to Junior Senior with pictures of kittens.

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