They Burned My Car

A memorial to my car…struck down by an arsonist in the prime of its life on 17 September 1996, at the tender age of six.

On Tuesday afternoon, I went out to my car, hoping to drive to Safeway for a reckless grocery spending spree. Unfortunately, my car wasn’t there. Being the jaded city dweller I am, I didn’t think much of it. “Guess I hit that five parking ticket limit”, I thought, as I walked to the police station a block away to pay my way out of the tow yard once again. Only this time, the Department of Parking and Traffic was not involved…

“Sir, your car was towed on an arson hold.”

“Oh great! Someone stole my car and started a fire?”

“No sir, that’s not exactly what ‘arson hold’ means…”

The next day, when I went to Pier 70 to identify the body, I was shocked. The car which brought me to Planet SOMA, among other places, resembled a charcoal briquette. I was not really prepared for the immense destruction. It was pretty ugly. I was really shocked most by the fact that what used to be the spare tire was sitting in what used to be the front seat. I was also pretty amazed that what used to be everything else inside the car wasn’t much of anything anymore. Looks like it was a pretty dang nasty fire. At first I thought a street person might have decided the car looked comfy enough for a cigarette and a good night’s sleep. Now I’m not too sure.

Maybe someone was pissed off by the ACT UP sticker. Maybe some some crazed tourist was retaliating against my “Mystery Spot” sticker. Maybe the commercial radio “powers that be” were not amused by the college radio ads. Could it have been a rabid environmentalist? Or perhaps a psychotic suit monster from Merrill Lynch or Charles Schwab upset that I turned down his request to do the impossible (immediately) one day at work? What do you think?

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