Getting Your Swerve On

As I write, the snow is falling again in the Denver area -- and beyond depressing the hell out of me (when did the Mile High City swap climate cycles with Buffalo, New York?), this latest round of flurries is only deepening a personal dilemma that seems unlikely to be resolved anytime soon.

Within the past week or so, my car has gone out of alignment; Westword's conservative critics won't be surprised to discover that it's pulling to the left. Don't know how it happened, but since driving in these parts is currently a lot like exploring the surface of the moon (and I don't own a lunar rover), there are plenty of possible culprits: massive potholes, buried curbs, ruts as deep as the Mariana Trench, etc. Under normal circumstances, I'd simply pay to have this problem repaired. But since the streets remain a hazard that even Consumer Reports could never have dreamed up -- and with more snow on the way -- the odds are good that I'd simply knock the car out of alignment again the next day, the next week, or whatever.

For now, then, I'm trying to deal with my leftward slant even as I'm praying for a warming trend as freakish as the recent wave of snowstorms has been. With luck, I might be driving straight and true by July. In the meantime, commuters, stay to my right. You'll be safer that way. -- Michael Roberts

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