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Last Sunday I attempted to go to work early which...

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Dear Tom and Ray:



Last Sunday, I attempted to go to work early, which was my first mistake. My beautiful 1989 Honda Accord was parked in the driveway. The driver's window had been left open about three inches because it's broken, and that's as far up as I can roll it. I put my key in the lock, only to discover that it was already unlocked. I looked in the car and saw a pile of something in the back seat, which was odd, as I'd cleaned the car the night before and had left nothing inside. I was a bit taken aback to see a tattooed arm in the midst of what appeared to be a pile of laundry. Upon further observation, I was able to make out the sleeping figure of a man, curled up in a most uncomfortable-looking position. I silently backed away from the car, went inside and called 911. The police removed the drunk and his belongings, and I cleaned up the vomit he left as a gift. But now I really want to fix the window. It seems to have fallen off its guides or whatever. I'd like to fix it myself if possible. What do you think? -- Beth

RAY: Well, first of all, Beth, I want to thank you for giving my brother a place to sleep the other night.

TOM: That wasn't me, Beth. I promise. I don't have a tattoo. And I prefer Lincoln Town Cars.

RAY: I think you're right that the window -- the window through which your intruder gained access -- has come off its track.

TOM: There's a window "regulator" inside the door that transmits the cranking motion of your hand to the up-and-down movement of the window.

RAY: Can you fix it yourself? I would say no. It involves taking the door apart, which you could probably do. But since you don't know how the regulator is supposed to work, it's going to be very hard for you to know what's wrong or what needs to be replaced once you get in there.

TOM: The good news is that any gas-station mechanic over the age of 30 has probably seen a hundred of these and can figure out what's wrong pretty quickly. And depending on what needs to be replaced, you're probably looking at a cost between $50 and $150.

RAY: That's a small price to pay to keep the likes of my brother out of your back seat.
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