December 28 roundup


  • “Fix It Yourself Garage” self-service auto repair shop hopes it’s beaten the liability curse

    I hope so, as it’s a good idea. But I suspect a waiver won’t protect them much if the worst happens.

  • The garage folks say they’re protected by waivers and a copious amount of insurance, but waivers aren’t foolproof and it could only take one lawsuit for their insurance company to ditch them or raise their premiums enough to put them out of business.

  • Re. the Browns letter;

    Reminds me of when my wife worked in house for a large bank. One of their estates was being handled by an attorney in Alabama, who received a fairly aggressive and non-professional letter from an attorney seeking a portion of the estate…the letter (paraphrasing) went something like this:

    Dear Sir:

    I received and enclose your letter dated _____. I knew you would be so proud to have the original to show your momma.

  • $20 an hour is a bit much. How much is the mechanics’ rate, $45 or so? And they usually guaranty you a price, no matter how long it actually takes them. Whereas at this place if it takes you twenty hours, you have to pay for twenty hours. As an avid DIYer, I can say that for something you have never done before, it will undoubtedly take you twice as long as a professional and you stand a good shot of breaking something. That doesn’t deter me from fixing something at home, but if my weekend project ran me a few hundred dollars, it might. If you need expensive tools, then maybe it makes sense but otherwise I think $20 an hour is a little high.

  • “How much is the mechanics’ rate, $45 or so?”

    Last century.

    Still, any business that allows a guy to spend $130 on differential fluid isn’t teaching well.

  • Here’s the letter the magazine Private Eye received from Goodman Derrick & Co, after printing allegations (for which they had evidence) that Mr Arkell had been on the take:

    We act for Mr Arkell who is Retail Credit Manager of Granada TV Rental Ltd. His attention has been drawn to an article appearing in the issue of Private Eye dated 9th April 1971 on page 4. The statements made about Mr Arkell are entirely untrue and clearly highly defamatory. We are therefore instructed to require from you immediately your proposals for dealing with the matter. Mr Arkell’s first concern is that there should be a full retraction at the earliest possible date in Private Eye and he will also want his costs paid. His attitude to damages will be governed by the nature of your reply.

    Here’s the Eye’s reply
    We acknowledge your letter of 29th April referring to Mr J. Arkell. We note that Mr Arkell’s attitude to damages will be governed by the nature of our reply and would therefore be grateful if you would inform us what his attitude to damages would be, were he to learn that the nature of our reply is as follows: fuck off.