My van, which has a solid following and plently of nicknames had a near death experience last week, in the typical way things in my life tend to happen.

After getting the rear end replaced a few months ago (apparently not all that well), it decided to crap out on the Garden State Parkway on the way to New Hampshire, in one of New Jersey’s several armpits, Hackensack. It got just far enough before it seized up to get to a parking lot. Stuck between a rock and a hard place, it almost got scrapped, but is now getting fixed and given a second chance for the bargain price of $2700.