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#0821: No Poorly Done Deed Goes Unpunished

Original Air Date: 05.25.2008

   Best Moment

Description: 
This week on Car Talk, good intentions go awry for Drew in New Jersey. He decided to surprise his girlfriend Sarah by washing her car, and--oops!-- left a very large and messy scratch. She's kinda ticked off, and her mood probably won't improve when she realizes his restitution will require her wallet. Meanwhile, out in Colorado, another family is in need of Magliozzi Mediation. This time, it's Tyler and his dad, who can't agree on what kind of car crash causes the most damage. We think they might want to lighten up just a little, but Tom and Ray nonetheless take a step back to their year(s) of Physics 101 to try to help. Also, a mysterious backfire makes one woman think her husband may be trying to knock her off, a skier wonders why he's become a member of the Brake Pad of the Month Club, and what do you do when a mechanic tells you your carburetor needs work... when you don't have a carburetor? All this and more, on this week's Car Talk.

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This Week's Puzzler

Most cars have one, some have two, none have three and some have four. What is it? Find out!

Last Week's Puzzler

How do you plant four plants... and keep them all equidistant? Find out!

Show Open Topic

Could Infiniti's Plasma Cluster Filtration be the solution Tommy's been looking for all these years?

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Boy, did you blow it!

by larryj

our response about the two cars approaching at 60 mph each was dead wrong. Try this: you're going 60 mph and can crash into a concrete wall or another (stationary) car. Which would you choose? If this doesn't lead you to the correct answer to the oriignal question, I'll explain further, but you have found a way to violate the law of conservation of energy - a very useful ability in this day of high prices for fuel.

Favorite Moment: I tried to call in to save you some long-term embarassment, but the line was busy - I figured a couple dozen other chemists (and a few physicists and maybe an engineer or two) were trying to get through to you. Hope I did with this message.

one way they could be right

by okin15

If it weren't for the stipulation that it is an "immovable" wall, then crashing into a wall which gives a little would make the 60 mph crash less bad. Since in real life, it's likely that the wall would give some, it feels less dangerous.

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