I have test anxiety about getting my car inspected. I think it’s all those years as a principal’s kid and the fear of failure. I have the same fears when I get a Pap test or a mammogram. But the State of Texas requires that the CAR gets inspected and doesn’t much give a care if I get inspected.
Texas is one of only 17 states that require a safety inspection. Most states quit requiring safety inspections after NHTSA failed to show that the inspections saved lives. Don’t expect Texas to stop the inspections any time soon. They are big business for the state and car repair shops. It costs about $40 million for the state to run and brings in $170 million annually.
Yesterday I turned up at Carmody’s Auto Care with my car, my keys, and an inspection sticker that expired in April. I thought about getting the oil changed, too, but I didn’t want to reward my car in case it couldn’t pass the test.
I’m not a very good car parent. I’m pretty sure that if people could be reincarnated as inanimate objects, Jeffrey Dahmer or Adolph Hitler might have to come back to serve an earthly punishment as my vehicle. Really. It’s that bad.
Bob checked the oil on my car before a recent trip. “It’s kind of dirty, honey. When did you change it last?”
“Ummmm. I think it was about 8,000 miles ago, more or less.”
He was so shocked that I’m glad I didn’t fess up to the 13,000 miles that I’m pretty sure it was.
I waited for a few hours before checking back at Carmody’s. They are only a couple of businesses down from my office so I walked over, glancing with one eye at my windshield.
I immediately regretted the decision to skip the oil change.