June 2009
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Is your car safe – even at home ?

The blog author was the sole witness to a despicable crime this evening. The victim, in the below right photo was a long standing member of the Karupu Kaakka Kudumbam Gang (K3G).  His short devious dark life of crime was brutally ended by a rival gang member of  Nandri-illa Nais Nexus (NNNs)  – shown in an earlier file photo (left) from our archives.  

The victim was talking a leisurely post dinner walk in the garden when he was murdered in hot blood(it is still summer here remember!)  by the accused who was granted his nightly parole (from his chains for his nightly business) just a few minutes earlier. If you look closely the dead K3G is seen in the background on a high perch aiming at a poor defenseless automobile while his murderer relaxes on the foreground.

A black raven
Image via Wikipedia – RIP

Dog - Victim in background sulking.

Murder Accused relaxing - Primary Victim in background and another victim in background sulking under sheets.

Though one key gang member has been put to rest tonight the attacks  still continue and will continue on without end.  

I mention attacks on poor helpless Automobiles in their own homes.  
On a daily basis cars in India have to deal with attacks not just on the road while on the move but also at home when at rest from the following attackers: 
Kids – Cycle handle bars, bats,chalk, pens, stones, sticks etc find cars surfaces very irresistible and feel the need to produce artworks on shiny cars. Car grilles/number plates also are a good alternative to putting up stumps for playing cricket. Headlamps/tail lamps are the bails – you knock one of them out – you get a wicket !
Family Members – borrow the car and returning it all scratched up – without ever leaving the parking lot/compound !
Pets/Stray Animals/Reptiles/Rodents/Insects –  Cars are made of material found to be very comforting to these. They feel they have to be in constant touch with them, bite/pee/sit/shit on them, scratch them, get into them to prepare to meet their maker, give your reminders to ensure you to re-do the wiring system/buy new car covers/do periodic repaints/interior cleaning), clog up A/C vents to make sure you have to clean the whole system. I once have given a lift to a Frog on my Swift. It rode on my car’s A-pillar and kept peering in through the glass at me for around 2 km. It hopped off finally when a bus passed me and scared it ! (True Story – I swear)
Dog Vs Car Vs Rat

NNN Vs RR - 2008

Dog Vs Car Cover

NNN Vs RR - 2009

The photos to the left are the scars from gang fights between the Rebellious Ratberts and the NNNs in 2008. The car cover that was in the way of the fighting, suffered extensive injuries – but was given first aid and lived for a year with multiple hospital visits requiring stitches.
The other photo is from January 2009 when a repeat fight broke out between the RRRs and the NNNs. This time however the car cover had received grevious injuries and no amount of needle+thread first aid and DTR(duct tape repair) could save it.
Trees  – Coconut trees are the most dangerous – they can aim coconuts at cars even up to 20 feet away from them. Any tree that has falling fruit/twigs/branches has to have sign boards next to them warning about them and their violence against cars. Laws of nature/ gravity/ biology/ chemistry and physics are bent by trees to fling fruit/nuts/ branches/ birds at cars). If they cannot throw something then they will make sure they drip a decent sized amount of  tree sap on car parts that will be very obviously visible such as the center of the bonnet etc. (ensuring a repaint/polish is required).
Movable Objects – Gates, doors and anything that can swing, will and shall swing out and strike the closest car. Wind is not a requirement for this phenomenon. A mild sneeze will suffice. Actually a thought of sneezing will be enough.
Immovable Objects – Cars are fatally attracted towards immovable objects such as walls, pillars, posts etc at speeds so slow(tending towards zero) that just expensive paint scraping and body denting occurs. I theorize that Buildings have evolved from Trees especially coconut trees – since they also exhibit similar aim and strength of throws. The only difference is that buildings throw  pieces of concrete, bricks, tiles etc at poor unsuspecting automobiles. If they cannot throw items similar to what I mentioned they usually drip A/C water or other similar corrosive liquid on the car. Then they act like  they are just some building that can do no harm ! Balconies are the evolutionary equivalent of tree branches and are used by humans instead of birds as shooting ranges from which to practise their aim – at cars of course.
Neighbors– These people can be jealous, stupid, egotistical, insane, funny and mean all at the same time and go all out to make sure your vehicle has at least one scratch more than their 30 year old rust and rabies ridden excuses for automobiles. These are the ones that feed stray dogs/crows/beggars on your car bonnet/roof and also teach poor illiterate children to read and write on your car ! The sad part is your car is probably the cheapest vehicle money can buy – but still they could be jealous.
House Help:  People who look like they have brains in all other situations will always choose to remove them before they work near your car. Excuses such as “I didn’t know paint thinner would remove the entire coating of paint – I just thought I would remove the tree sap” become very common. Any equipment they use for cleaning the yard will invariably fly towards the car and gently remove a small layer of paint. Just a small amount enough to be visible.
Other cars/vehicles: They get amorous when they see a curvaceous beauty like a red Suzuki Swift and feel they need to get close to her and cuddle up and nuzzle against her with disastrous results. Common excuses mentioned by the drivers are things like – I forgot to put the handbrake on – we should be aware of the real reason.
Rust: Those staying near the coastline must experience new cars rusting withing weeks of purchase. No solution for them other than to keep buying new cars or to hold off on that replacement purchase till an all plastic car comes about. Invest in rust proof paint company futures. Those of you who refuse to drive your cars from time to time deserve to get a nice rust full car. At-least start it once in a while !
PS:   One of my earlier posts was 10 Reasons to leave your car at home . Even though it makes sense in some scenarios to leave your car at home, it is never advisable to leave your car at home without supervision for extended periods of time. Do check on your vehicle from time to time as it is constantly under attack.
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8 comments to Is your car safe – even at home ?

  • Nice one. Mine stands on the road and so far no major incidents!

  • Ignore the URL in the comment above. Firefox picked it up from some list and I did not realize it until after I posted it.

  • In today’s TOI (Delhi edition), there’s a news on blast in car because of fitted LPG cylinder. Owner was trying to refill LPG with kitchen cylinder and the mishap occurred. So maybe one more edition to your list.

  • Sushil

    @Danesh – No major incidents for sure – but the small ones are there for sure. Keep track of the scratches – or is yours really a black car- scratched fully to white ? :-).
    @Adesh – Yikes – LPG cylinders exploding – did’nt think of it.

  • fas

    Good stuff Sushil. But cars aint any safer outside either. Sometimes its best not to worry much, because we really can’t do much, can we?

  • Sushil

    Cars are not safe on the move or at rest – you ask why worry ? But how can one not worry – when you are so passionate about your car :-). the only time I will not worry is if my car was just a heap of rust – but being me it will not get to that stage ever.

  • Very nice post Sushil 🙂 In fact, I do not face many of these issues as we live in a gated/apartment environment and the car is parked in the underground. But have a different set of problems altogether.

    – The basement leakage: Invariably all apartments have leaking car parks. The chemical used for seapage protection along with the cement water comes and stains the car tops. These stains will not go with rubbing compound or polishing and the end you have to repaint the affected quarters (One reason for NOT keeping it at home)

    – The saddists in action: Some of these people seem to have special affection towards new cars – especially the black ones – and if you park your car in streets near restaurants/malls etc, you can see a full length scratch created by a key or coin… I have been myself shocked several times seeing it on (others’) those beautiful black Civics and Cities.

    – Another thing I have faced in public parking lots is the way in which people mistreat the car parked next. Many of those junkies open their car door so fast and wide that it causes dents in your doors. Sometimes, you save your day by being wise enough and park next to similar cars (who have the same worries). E.g. Park an ikon next to an Accent/baleno/or a brother/sister ikon rather than parking next to an old Tata Safari or Cielo the owner of which is frustrated with life due to fuel expenses.

    – Some buggers also lean over the car bonnet and indulge in ‘serious’ discussions and even keep their boots on your car bumper as if it’s their asset. Recently I had my car sides scratched by such an idiot’s jeans buttons (on back pocket)

    Unfortunately, we are in India and the gap between rich and poor (or even upper and lower middleclass) is very wide. Moreover, it’s like anybody can spoil not only public property but also private. If you complain to the police, they might actually support the accused or the invariably ‘smaller vehicle’s driver (I still do not understand this rule)

  • Sushil

    Lot of great points Ajith. I have’nt lived in flats in India so these points never occured to me. I have been obsessed with how and where I park my car :-). I fequently find spots that have walls only to the left passenger side – so that at most only the right side drivers door gets dings :-). I park like that at the office usually since most people coming to work are the only ones in the car.

    The smaller vehicle Vs larger vehicle experience deserves a separate thread. Have had a bad bad experience once.

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