Archive for January, 2009

Introducing the Lesbo Rider

January 29, 2009

Perhaps the most rugged vehicle ever produced, this 1995 Subaru Legacy, endorsed by the great tennis player Martina Navratilova herself, has made the journey from Minnesota to Costa Rica.Since I make frequent reference to this Iron Horse in my posts, and because I just discovered how to insert photos into these posts, here it is:

cimg1923

You’ll notice the lack of a license plate under the front grill. This pig is approaching 170,000 miles, of which some 55,000 have been a full-on piss-pounding on Costa Rica’s euphemistically labelled roads. It’s got some problems. The suspension is totally shot. Lots of knobs and dials inside don’t work. No interior or dash lights work. The door locks are all fucked up because somebody jammed a screwdriver into all of them. Sometimes the power steering doesn’t work. The a/c conked out. It’s dented like a crazy man’s tin cup.

But, oh, does it ride smooth. It’s got this huge ass to keep the bumps away from the pilot:

A Fat-Ass Bitch

A Fat-Ass Bitch

Mechanically, it’s sound. I mean, this thing purrs around town. It’s got balls. And it’s fucked up enough to never be the nicest car anywhere I go, which ostensibly should attract thieves elsewhere, but this has not happened. At least I don’t care when it gets dinged up. Which is good, becuase this happens frequently.

Drive to the beach? No problem. Banging along a rocky mountain road? Piece of cake. Slaloming through the clusterfuck of mid-day traffic in San Jose? Bring it on. There’s nowhere I can’t go in the Lesbo Rider.

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License Plate to Steal

January 28, 2009

If anyone sees the Costa Rican license plate 691256, please let me know. It’s mine.

It disappeared while I was out for a bike ride. The Lesbo Rider was parked in front of a friend’s house, in a nice neighborhood in Heredia.

But nice neighborhood doesn’t mean safe neighborhood. In fact, there are none. This particular friend hides his computer, speakers and other valuable items every time he leaves the house, because there is an entrance that is only protected by a 12-foot wall topped with razor wire, and locked windows and doors.

I was wondering aloud what a person could want with a lone license plate, and my tico friends immediately offered suggestions: a pirate taxi will use them for tooling around town; a crook to throw off the authorities; just about anybody who wants to get around the license plate restrictions for driving downtown.

The remedy is simple. I have to go to the Consejo de Seguridad Vial and make a statement. They then have to give me a paper that says that my plate wasn’t removed by the traffic police. This transaction, I estimate, will take around 4-6 hours of waiting in lines to the rhythm of thudding stamps pounding ink into triplicate papers. Then, I take my report to the National Registry. This should be another half day of waiting in line. If all goes well, I can come back in a few weeks for my new plate.

In the meantime, I’ll keep my eyes peeled for the LB’s old nametag.

The Internets Are Mine

January 27, 2009

I now have high-speed internets in my house. Yes, from the coffee-stained comfort of my mountain shack, mere steps from my heated fart-sack, I can now pound inane and poorly formulated thoughts and post them for all of cyber humanity to see. It’s been a long time coming. The technician asked me how long I had been waiting, and I said three years. He nodded silently for a moment and said, “ah yes, that sounds right.” Ten minutes later, he was gone, and I was online.

And oh! what a change it is! I feel that I have suddenly been thrust into the modern world, with instanst access to Jizz In My Pants, curry recipes and the Hank Aaron’s lifetime statistics. I can hardly decide what to do first, so I keep a dozen windows open on my browser.

A corollary benefit is leaving the house less. The Lesbo Rider collects pine needles as I cook up every last scrap in my house. I can’t leave. What if someone Skypes me? I can only sit back and watch my bank account swell as gas, beer and restaurants become expenses of the past. Maybe i can watch it grow in real time, online. It’s like counting your gold pieces, except that I’m swimming in a pool filled with bits of information, happily drowning in my internets-induced bliss.

I shall now drink deeply of the internets’ infinite knowledge. Bottom’s up!

Vegetables

January 23, 2009

Traffic was backed up on Avenida 10 in downtown San Jose because there was a man pulling a cart loaded with ears of corn and celery. Cars had to wait behind him before darting into the other lane in order to proceed at more than 1 mile an hour. This kind of thing happens all the time, and I kind of like it. It’s like the government saying, Hey, these guys need to work too. It also makes for a great excuse. Today I was late because I was behind a truck overloaded with sticks, creeping down the mountain, and then the vegetable man. I say this and everyone just nods and says, Driving in Costa Rica sure is an adventure, isn’t it?

Cops and Taxi Drivers

January 22, 2009

An article published in the San Jose daily La Nacion chronicles an altercation between some hoods, taxi drivers and the police in my hometown of Heredia. Apparently, a car full of dudes robbed a taxi driver, who alerted via radio his fellow cabbies. The police actually stopped the suspects’ car, which is a surprise, and then the fun began:

Five subjects got out of the car, the police officer said, but at that moment a taxi arrived with two people, one of which tried to start a brawl because one of the individuals had thrown a stone at him.

When he realized that the taxi drivers had called their colleagues on the radio, the city police officer told the suspects to leave the area, to avoid trouble.

Folled by the taxi, the suspects drove around the block in their car. However, when they ran a stop sign, they crashed with another Heredia police car, which was doing a routine patrol.

The patrol car tipped over and the red car crashed into a corner house.

Then, dozens of taxi drivers arrived and the lynching began.

The Heredia police officer tried to avoid the beating, but he had to leave because the taxi drivers were hitting incessantly. Next to their car, two guys were mercilessly beaten as their faces stained with blood.

An 18-year-old subject was thrown into the street and attacked with multiple kicks to the head and the rest of his body.

A fourth suspect tried to stay in the car, but the taxi drivers climbed onto the hood and broke the windshield to pull him out.

Nowhere in this article, or others on the subject, does it mention police reinforcements coming in, any person taken into custody or other actual police work involved. These are the people in control of law and order in Costa Rica. Maybe they should give all the taxi drivers guns and badges instead.