Picture a clear and sunny day, not a cloud in the sky. In the parking lot of Lakefield’s one and (unfortunately) only funeral home sits my “liquid yellow” MINI. It’s all by its lonesome, not disturbing a soul and clearly stationary between the painted lines that designate where a car is supposed to be parked. Inside I’m busy working on a memorial video for a recently deceased person, and I feel a hand rest on each of my shoulders. It’s my boss. He says… “I just hit your car”. OK, so first I think “fuck off you did not” and look at him hoping that this is some kind of sick joke. But I can tell by the look that he’s not kidding around. So what do you say when you “boss” hits your car? You can’t go off the deep end and rag out him can you? Well, I suppose I could have gone ballistic, but that would just make things really awkward wouldn’t it? I follow him outside, and sure enough, he’s backed the big old black Chevy Suburban body wagon out of the home’s garage, and while in reverse executed a wide curve down the drive and into the parking lot in some sort of “I’m a real man” maneuver and smashes into the ass end of my MINI shoving its entire backside a good foot to the left. That’s the same MINI that I had just made my first payment on. My pride and joy. My little yellow MINI Cooper S with dual exhaust, heated seats, onboard computer, built in GPS system and a sound system that puts the band right there in the back seat! Yes… THAT MINI.
So with the tail light smashed and pieces of it hanging there by a thread of what’s left of the rubber seal, the bumper crumpled in like a dried Apricot - only yellow, and the back panel looking as messed up as the mouth of an NHL player, I flick the light cover a bit and watch it swing back and forth on the rubber thread, and say “there… now it looks more real Scott… Something has to be moving to make an accident look more authentic”. I don’t know why I said that. Maybe it’s because whenever you see a crash on TV there’s always a wheel spinning on a turned over car, a turn indicator blinking, steam erupting from under a hood, or blood pooling onto the pavement from beneath the passenger side door. I just needed to see something “move”.
Surprisingly, that’s about as excited as I got, and aside from asking something like "how can you not see a bright yellow mini in an empty parking lot?" in a sort of joking manner (he was feeling like an idiot I gathered so I didn't want to get too rough), we went inside, and arranged to have the damage appraised and fixed, which was completed within a couple of weeks to the tune of $2300. That’s $2300 from HIS wallet of course, not mine.
The event of that terrible day remains emblazoned in my memory as if it happened, well… three years ago. Since then my faithful MINI and I have travelled hither and yon. We’ve been on the highways, and on the country roads. City life and country farms, we’ve done it all. We’ve plowed through snow and battled torrential rains, and we even went camping. Put those back seats down and you can fit a whole load of groceries, three 18L water jugs, and a six-pack of beer - no problem. The best cargo I ever had wasn’t cargo at all though. That would be the company of my Black Lab Punk’n Louise. She absolutely loved riding in the back of the MINI, and while I never knew what the two of us looked like travelling through town, I would bet that many a finger pointed at how cute the whole picture would have been. When you have a MINI, you have memories. A new one is made every time you go for a ride, and people aren’t afraid to talk with you about your car wherever you go.
All this being said, there’s another chapter in the series of I Love My MINI. It’s the latest story of how a bright yellow MINI parked on a village street can once again be victimized by a vehicle in reverse.
Stay tuned for “I love my MINI, Part 3" (you'll pee your pants!)