My car's clock skips ahead four hours...

Dear Car Talk

Dear Car Talk | Jan 01, 1990

Dear Tom and Ray:

I inherited my mother's 1979 Olds Cutlass. I have driven it from British Columbia, Canada to the Gulf of Mexico, down the Baja and back, ....generally trashing it! It has survived very well, except for one thing; the dashboard clock every so often gains four hours. Being digital, it's very easy to adjust. My question is: What does the car do during these four hours?

RAY: Your car is going to the same place we go during those one-minute breaks in our radio show...the Parallel Universe.

TOM: It's the same place that the contractors who are working on your house go right after they tear everything apart and leave 3,000 bricks on your front walk. They go over to the Parallel Universe and drink coffee for two or three weeks. Then they come back, work for a day, and disappear again.

RAY: If you want to confirm this, make yourself a thermos of coffee and a couple of sandwiches and sit behind the wheel of your car all night. Suddenly, you'll be transported into a world where you'll find things you were sure were lost; countless single socks, pieces of paper with important phone numbers, zillions of laundry tickets, your Aunt Sophie's cat "Arnold."

TOM: Actually, considering the age of the car, Andy, your best bet is to slap one of those $2 stick-on clocks over the existing clock. The car won't be nearly as cosmic, but you won't be four hours early for those dentist appointments either.

RAY: But while your in the parallel universe, if you see two guys named Vinnie with workbelts on, tell them to come back and move the bricks they left in front of my house.

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