Do as I say...
...not as I do is apparently the oath sworn by a police officer who faced suspension after allegedly slashing the tires of his estranged wife's car while he was on duty serving the citizenry of an Illinois city.
The officer was charged with criminal damage to property. According to a TV news report, a neighbor saw the officer allegedly slash the tires around 4 a.m. one recent morn. The local police department said it planned to file a complaint to suspend him without pay.
If convicted, he faces up to five years in prison. Imagine trying to explain to some grizzled cellmate who asks, ``Whatya in for?'' ``Uh...severe tire damage.''
Kickin' some ash
Leave it to our friends at Goodyear to make some hay...rather, some dust as they linked the firm's new Assurance tire with the recent rumblings of the Mount St. Helens volcanic crater in the Pacific Northwest.
The Akron-based tire maker sent out a press release saying that while the mountain smokes and quakes, engineers and scientists at Goodyear ``continue to develop unique products that make positive use of the byproducts of such lava flows.'' One of the key elements in the Assurance with TripleTred Technology is volcanic sand, used in the tire's ``ice zone'' to create a rough surface on the tread face, the tire maker said.
As the tire is used, the volcanic sand ``grit'' presents microscopic cavities that work as tiny traction edges for better grip on slick surfaces. ``The volcanic sand is added to the tire as a ground pumice material in the rubber,'' explained Michael Crawford, Goodyear's technical team leader for light tire materials.
Rest assured there's no truth to the rumor that members of Goodyear's PR staff have been sent to Mount St. Helens to collect lava samples for the eventual next-generation Assurance. The volcanic material used for the tire actually comes from southeastern Idaho, which we hear is really nice this time of year.
This 'n that
Feeling your age?-A Yiddish Proverb states: ``A man is not old until his regrets take the place of dreams.''
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Words of wisdom-Famous philosopher ``Unknown'' observed: ``A skeptic is a person who, when he sees the handwriting on the wall, claims it's a forgery.''
That's `Mr. Stud' to you
The Northwest Tire Dealers Association (NWTDA ) recently awarded its coveted ``Stud of the Year'' award to Bill Dodak, branch manager of Wheel City in Portland, Ore.
And no, all you guys and gals with dirty minds-it's not in recognition for Mr. Dodak's, shall we say, non-industry extracurricular escapades.
The third annual tongue-in-cheek award was started by Bruno Wessel, retired president of aluminum stud manufacturer Bruno Wessel Inc., to commend the NWTDA for its work in combating anti-studded tire legislation in Oregon and Washington. The award is a replica of a 3- or 4-inch stud mounted on a trophy base and is given to any NWTDA member who volunteers for the association.
Mr. Dodak won the award this year in recognition for his efforts in organizing the association's golf tournament. He will proudly display the award in his office for a year, then recommend a successor to be 2005's ``stud of the year.''
We presume ladies also are eligible for the award.
Fame may be fleeting-just ask some of those instant celebs from the ``Survivor'' TV series-but for a Texas tire store manager it was, uh, sweet? Naw, not really.
Just when you're ready to nod off and say the tire business is...yawn...borrr-ing, ask Mark Schumpelt, a Texas Tire Dealers Association (TTDA) board member and owner of Mark's American Car Care Center in Austin, Texas. Seems that a couple of young women recently showed up at his store asking for directions.
Turns out the duo was none other than gadflies Nicole Richie and Paris Hilton, who were taping an installment of their Fox TV show ``Simple Life.'' The segment that aired included the encounter at Mark's tire shop where assistant store manager Dan Vreeland, 41, was shown on camera pointing while the women, as they usually do on the show, looked perplexed.
The simple pair were trying to find their way to Spicewood, Texas. Dan explained to them how to get there in the simplest of terms and even gave them a map.
``They came in with a huge entourage and kept me busy for at least 20 minutes giving them directions while they kept filming,'' Dan told Marketplace. Then, just as he had expected, ``they edited it way down to make it seem like I was giving real complicated directions.''
What they finally showed on air ``made me look like a fool. But that's OK,'' he added. ``I knew they'd do that. I don't really care.''
In the end, the televised clip had one of the girls saying something like, ``I didn't understand a thing he said.''
Too bad for Mark, though. ``He was very perturbed,'' Dan said almost gleefully. It was Mark's one day off, so he wasn't even in the shop at the time.
As for Dan, he's been working for the dealership for nine years and said he has been a partner in the business since 1998.
So does he watch ``Simple Life''? ``Hell no,'' he said. ``I can't stomach it...it's not the kind of program I want my kids watching.''
Edited by Sigmund J. Mikolajczyk