Thursday, August 16, 2007

FM Transmitters, Late Night Driving, & the Flaming Lips

I was actually on my own this past weekend as MTG was out of town visiting family. So seeing as I had nothing to do I drove around town for a while. I really wanted to see the Bourne Ultimatum, but eveyone I called already had plans or didn't want to. The bums. :-P This is my last Saturday night story.

So I proceeded to make a mix CD, full of happy stuff to dance about to. It took forever as I had to copy some music onto my PC. After about 2 hours I finally made a playlist and proceeded to burn the disk. I just had to hear the B-52's Roam on my car stereo. (Again thanks so much Beth, you're the bestest.) Having finished burning the CD (and foolishly not checking it) I took off to roam about in the car. I didn't put the disk in right away as I was fidgeting with my satellite in the car. Finally "after" I left home I put in the disk. The music sounded good, ahhh..the B-52's. The song started then "Pop!!"....okay...."Crackle!!!""".....the CD started skipping. What the hell??!! I tried the next song, it got stuck moving to the next track. Next track same thing. Then the dreaded "ERROR" message appeared on the stereo display. I took the CD out and put it in imagining it was just sitting wrong. No such luck. Dammit!!!

Seeing as I was robbed of my music bliss I was fumming. I threw the CD out in the trash while I stopped to fill up with petrol. Stupid PC ruined all my work. Now I actually had my mp3 player with me in my pocket. I copied the playlist to it also while burning the CD. (I think doing 2 intesive music things at the same time is what ruined the CD) Now I know what you're thinking. Why not just plug the mp3 player into the stereo. I would love to do that. But my car (factory) stereo doesn't have an auxilary input, its CD only and not even a tape drive. Double damn!!

Now I know I can buy a ultra nice new car stereo system. But the fact is the factory one is wonderful. Plus I can control the sound, track, radio, everything on the steering wheel. "ON THE STEERING WHEEL"! I don't even have to look at the thing. And it sounds wonderful too. I've got a six speaker and sub-woofer I installed myself going. It sounds awesome. If I swap out the stereo I loose the control on the steering wheel. (It should be noted that I can buy an after market harness that will enable certain new radios to be controlled by the steering wheel, though not to full functionality I would like) And really the factory one looks so much nicer than the ones for sale at the store. I don't need multicolour screen displays, removable faces, bluetooth tech....well...maybe bluetooth, screen saver, etc, stuff.

So I drove not being able to listen the the beloved "Roam" track I so deperately wanted to hear. Then I got an idea by looking at my satellite receiver. It transmits via FM. Hmmmm...wait Byron (a compadre of mine) had his Ipod hooked up to an FM transmitter, last time we drove to Austin. It was sounded......ok...maybe they have it at the store. So to Best Buy I went.

Looking around I found one. The price said $8.99!!! Oh how wonderful their cheap too!!! I quickly grabbed it as it was the last one there. I perused around the car stereo section looking at all the direct input receivers, and auxilarly hookups you can also do. Though not wanting to tear my dashboard open I opted for the transmitter. (Admittedly the direct connect would give superior sound to the transmitter but oh well.) So I picked up some batteries as the receiver required them and went to the register. I was thinking "Ya!! I'm gonna listen to my mp3's for only about $15 bucks all together." The child (yes I say CHILD, I think I'm at an age where I can say that now), the child working the register rang it up.

Child: "That'll be $31.87

Not thinking I'm taking out my bank card and getting ready to slide it through the kiosk when it hits me.

Me: $31.87!!! The sign said $8.99

Child: Oh yeah...someone else had brought one of these up here too, and told me the same thing. I forgot about it. (He said as he pulled the other one out from under the register) I just remembered as I scanned your transmitter.

Me: So instead of doing something about it and questioning the price too, you were just going to let me pay whatever rang up?

Child: (Stuttering) Well...uh...hang on, lemme get someone back there that can check.

We waiting, me standing there. Him flirting with his fellow gal pal register girl as it wasn't busy in the least.

Gal pals phone rang at her register.

Gap Pal: Sir do you want to go back there and show them were you found it.

Me: Okay...

So I went back and found the guy looking for the price. Lets call him Car radio guy (CRG)

CRG: Sir where did you find this? I can't find these anywhere.

Me: Over here, I say pointing to the lable that says $8.99. (The label didn't say anything other than $8.99, but had a barcode on it.)

CRG: Lemme check something.

He left and came back with a scanner and checked the barcode.

CRG: I'm sorry sir, but this is for something else. These shouldn't be here. I can see about knocking off a few bucks from the price but I can't sell you the transmitter for $8.99

Me: Nevermind I think for that price I'll buy a direct connect instead. (Which I did, why pay that much for a tranmitter that gets interference when a direct connect and have 100% quality sound)

CRG: Sorry sir. I don't even know where these came from. We usually strive to have everything in order. Especially since I'm over this area.

Me: No problem. (Ya putz!! I say inside my head)

I pick up the direct connect, it's $29.99. And on my way out I pick up The Flaming Lips - Yoshimi VS the Pink Robots. Which I've always loved but have never bought anything from the Flaming Lips. Which as of Saturday changed.

Long story short after the Best Buy debacle, I somehow ended up at a friends house watching The Hunt for Red October.

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