Julia's brakes failed, and she had heard that driving with the parking brake on can cause the brakes to give out. Is that what happened to her? See Car Talk's answer and post your own guess, here.
Craig Fitzgerald has built an entire career writing about cars that nobody likes. Ready to send your 1983 Pontiac Parisienne to the crusher? Call Craig, because he'd drive it every day. Tired of getting laughed at for riding a Vespa? Craig'll ride that Italian hairdryer across the country.