Take it with a grain of salt when you read a ranting review online. There are always two sides to a story, but today I am here to tell you that from my experience, Smith Muffler in Covington is terrible.
Over the summer I found out my Volkswagen Jetta would need a new axle and brakes. I took it to Smith Muffler. They had it done quickly and very affordably. I was happy.
Until I got on the highway. The car sounded like it was about to explode at anything over 50 miles per hour. I took the car back to Smith. They spent several days looking at it trying to find the problem. Again and again I suggested it had to be the axle. No, that can’t be it, they insisted. Eventually they washed their hands of it and wished me luck in fixing it.
I took the car to Auto4N on Montgomery, where they specialize in Volkswagens. Within 24 hours they had discovered that the list of possible causes Smith Muffler suggested were all wrong, and that the problem was, in fact, the axle Smith installed. For whatever reason, it just didn’t fit right.
To Smith Muffler’s credit, they refunded the cost of the axle. I was happy.
So a week ago I needed a new thermostat. I decided to go to Smith Muffler because they were courteous, economical, and not really responsible for an axle that was supposed to fit but didn’t. It seemed like a good faith gesture on my part.
Five days later, an alert went off that I was somehow almost empty on engine coolant–it’s supposed to last forever. The owner’s manual says this is a major issue and should be serviced by Volkswagen immediately. I called Auto4N, where several Volkswagen mechanics work. They are 200 yards from a dealer. Seemed like the safest and fastest way to get a major issue fixed.
Guess where they found a coolant leak?
Yes, the thermostat.
I had Auto4N fix the thermostat and called Smith Muffler to let them know. I thought it only fair that they refund the labor, and again to their credit, they did. But not before scolding me over the phone for not bringing my car to them instead of Auto4N. I explained that I went to Auto4N because I didn’t realize the coolant issue could be connected to the thermostat replacement, and that the owner’s manual said this needed genuine Volkswagen service (it’s my opinion that a VW specialty shop right down the road from a dealer is the next best thing).
When I went to Smith Muffler to get the refund, again I was scolded and questioned for not going to them first. I was told that after Auto4N’s diagnosis, I should have driven the car (with almost no coolant) back down to them. I was accused of not giving them common business courtesy. And, in front of customers, I was told I shouldn’t be getting upset over the fact that they were openly insulting me. In their words, “we see hundreds of customers every day. It’s clear we can’t satisfy you.”
I gave Smith Muffler a second chance after the axle fiasco. If they stand by their work as they claim, they should be doing it right the first time. If they aren’t comfortable or competent dealing with Volkswagens, that’s perfectly fair. But they should save everyone the hassle and say so. Above all, they shouldn’t act like I am somehow an asshole for wanting my car fixed. I don’t go around looking for opportunities to waste my time and money on shoddy repairs so I can demand a refund. I have never been so angry over getting a refund. It sucks when you think you’re doing a small local business a favor by going back to them after a bad experience, only to have another bad experience and then be treated like shit for it. It’s a shame.
The title here is, of course, a bit tongue in cheek. It does, however, point to an ironic typo that appeared in an Enquirer story about the Campbell County smoking ban ban (or, you know, “repeal,” as it’s appropriately termed) that got posted early this morning. Take a look:
So, yeah. I’ve made it well known that I’m a former smoker, so a lot of the time I can be on the fence about these sorts of things. Smoking is, ultimately, a personal choice. If you’re willing to kill yourself in order to look cool (can we admit that smoking looks SUPER FREAKING COOL?), then by all means, have at it.
The flipside here, of course, is the argument as to whether tobacco smoke injures people other than the smoker him or herself. To my understanding, science seems to suggest that it does. ONE POINT SMOKING BAN.
Once we get past the lame, superficial “It’s a personal choice” and “Well, it smells bad” arguments, the brass-tacks-actual-data seems to all side with the smoking ban here. Except for one–and it’s actually a pretty shitty argument.
The biggest disagreement I’ve seen with smoking bans has invariably been that “This will hurt our bar business.” It gets bandied about by these pro-smoking crews pretty liberally. Where is the data proving this? Nobody’s ever provided ANYTHING showing this, to my knowledge. This means that I could be wrong–and I’m willing to accept that. So, it’s time to issue a challenge, I guess. Ready?
IF ANYONE CAN SHOW ME RELIABLE DATA THAT SMOKING BANS HAVE ACTUALLY INJURED ANY BAR’S ABILITY TO MAKE MONEY, I WILL SUPPORT SMOKING BAN BANS, AND WILL SUBSEQUENTLY START SMOKING AGAIN.
But I can tell you this: as a resident of Campbell County, I will NOT be voting for Brian Painter, Ken Rechtin, Pete Garrett, or Steve Pendery because of their association with the Campbell County Tea Party. It’s possible that we’ll come down with the plague if they’re re-elected. Nice progress, jerks.
The Cincinnati Gardens is an old building. Not as old as, say, Fenway Park, or the taquitos spinning on the heat rollers at Speedway, but still, pretty old. Especially by today’s standards, where teams threaten to leave unless they get new homes every 10 years.
And that’s really worked out well for Cincinnati.
Gone are the big name concerts like The Beatles and Michael Jackson. And the big name teams don’t play there anymore, but the Gardens still plays host to a lot of fun courtesy of the Commandos and Rollergirls. I just wish the place didn’t smell so…old.
I know we’re crossing the river here, and that some folks aren’t too keen on what goes down on the other side, but the Campbell County smoking ban has been an interesting half-saga to watch. In the beginning, it appeared that they had chosen to follow suit with many other surrounding areas with the decision to make its businesses smoke-free. It’s something that’s a reasonably big step for such a major area in Kentucky, where tobacco is sort of a major thing, if you didn’t know.
…Until, of course, lots and lots of opponents to the ban showed up at a county meeting and presumably coughed so loud that county commissioners just said, “Screw it. Ban’s banned. The end.”
The last few years haven’t been kind to the retail industry. That includes Newport on the Levee.
“Hot Topic” is the latest store giving up on the Levee. Not that outfitters for angry teens are the best barometer of success, but it’s depressing when your only shopping options are now Barnes & Noble and a store that sells pirate clothes.
And maybe the Levee is just going through a natural transition from “stores, restaurants, movies and an aquarium” to “bachelorette party headquarters, movies and an aquarium.” I guess that’s going to happen when you have to pay to park for the same stores you can find at any exit along 275.
Apparently, people around the Newport-ish area who are sick of driving fifteen minutes to a Target are getting their wish: a Target store is opening at the beginning of March next to the Newport Kroger. I AM GOING TO DRIVE BY IT A WHOLE LOT.
Maybe I’ll BUY THE ESS OUT OF SOME SHEETS, OR SOME CURTAINS. You know they have SCREEN PRINTED TEE-SHIRTS AND A LIMITED GROCERY SELECTION, TOO?
You can even find ELECTRONICS, BICYCLES, AND THOSE CONDOMS YOUR HIGH SCHOOL GIRLFRIEND LIKED.
Okay. I can feign enthusiasm for consumerism for only so long.
The Nutcracker opened at Cincinnati Ballet this week. Yesterday, to be exact. The Nutcracker, of course, marks the actual beginning to the Christmas holiday, unlike the music you’ve been hearing inside Walgreen’s stores city-wide since November 1. Puke.
The Cincinnati Ballet is seriously great. It’s something you should go to see at least once a year. IT’S CALLED CULTURING YOURSELF WITH FINE ART. Do it.
Good date night: your lady will like you a little bit extra.
Dancers are pretty. Get me?
Maybe you can’t afford it? I bet you can find a ticket somehow. It probably won’t require befriending a rich benefactor and doing his bidding for some time in order to get yourself a seat at the ballet.
If you’re an uncultured rube, you might not want to go. Which makes you more of an uncultured rube, which means that you’re ripping open an uncultured rube echo chamber. Whoa.