Who Screens These Calls Anyway?

Car Talk: Animals and Cars

1. Why animals?

This CD is really a public service.

Many people will encounter problems such as a horse eating their steering wheels or black widow spiders invading their cars. They may need to know how to fix their electric cattle trailer brakes - or what to do when their faithful pooch loses his lunch all over the front seat. And, they may be tempted to call Car Talk. Now, knowing listeners can rely on this CD, we will all sleep more easily.

I should add that Tom and Ray have informed us that should any of these people ever get on the air again, we will all be looking for jobs.

2. Do Tom and Ray have dogs, cats, horses, goats or iguanas?

Tom and Ray have always felt a special bond with animals. Of course, as mechanics, they share a step on the evolutionary ladder with many four-legged creatures, and, thus, many traits and anatomical features. But, beyond that, both have welcomed dogs and cats into their homes as members of their families, and are especially devoted to these creatures who - unlike their wives - actually still bother to pay attention to them once in a while.

3. What's your favorite call?

The saga of Richard and his goats. For starters, you have the juxtaposition of this mild-mannered guy asking about using electroshock therapy on his goats. Then, you have Tom and Ray deciding to dig deeper as only they canand hitting pay dirt with the sudden introduction of Doris. And, to top it all off, you have Tommy quoting Don Rickles. It was a perfect storm. Thankfully, Richard was a good sport about the whole thing, and the story had a happy ending.

My favorite non-call is the "Andy Letter," because nobody has ever expressed the entire Car Talk ethos quite so well.

4. Have you told Tom and Ray about this CD?

Yeah, we said, "Guys, we want to put together a CD of really embarrassing calls with questions that have little or nothing to do with cars, for which you have no good answers." They thought for a moment, and asked, "Do we have to do any work?" We said, "No." They said, "Go for it!"

5. Why should someone buy this CD instead of, say, Englebert Humperdinck's new holiday CD?

Well, if misery loves company, then there's no more appropriate way for the family to spend the holidays than listening to this together around the Yule log, Menorah, or Festivus pole.