I’ve had a severe lack of posts on this tour. For this, I am truely sorry. My silence has been caused by a great deal of fun followed immediately and unexpectedly by a clusterfuck of vehicle blues, constant problem solving, long distance trouble shooting, stress and disappointment.
This trip should have ended a week ago. Instead, I am just now boarding a train from Chicago to Michigan City. Leaving Henry and my wife in St Louis still.
Here’s what happened:
As Milly posted a while back, our new van broke down last Monday night on our way back into St Louis. We dropped $500 into new brakes right before we left for this tour. However, the mechanic was unable to replace one of the calipers. He assured us this should not be much of a problem and we would be fine. Turns out, that caliper started to drag and proceeded to heat up a rod to the point where it melted our front right rim and caught the hub cap on fire. As soon as we realized this, we tried to pull over and found that the breaks no longer worked. All we could do was coast to a stop on the highway and hope the fire wouldn’t spread.
Thankfully, we came to a stop with no one hurt and our gear intact. Called AAA only to find that I had run out of free calls until August. Milly and I were about to start cold calling tow companys (at 1am) when a cop pulled up and offered to call us a tow via dispatch. Its so refreshing to find an officer actually out to serve and protect. Dude even showed us some cool pics on his smart phone, offered to give some of us a ride and delivered this line “Now, I know y’all got weed on ya somewhere. Just do me a favor and leave it in the van or something.” Solid gold.
Found out the next morning that the shop would need $1700 and a few days to fix our van. Samantha then called insurance who informed us that we were covered and that we could return home while they dealt with the problem. Everything seemed easy until the shop told us we couldn’t get anything out of the van until the insurance company finished their inspection and took control of the van.
We were told that would take 24-48 hours from Tuesday. Since then, we’ve had nothing but delays and complications. The insurance company has still not made their desicion. They say it will be done tomorrow but I just don’t know anymore. Our gear has been sitting in the van for a full week now. I can only hope nothing has been damaged in the heat.
Tabbia, Falex, Ray and Benji rented a car on Tuesday so they could all get back to work on time. Milly took the bus on Friday so he could still make it to PIX Fest. Samantha took a bus down to St Louis on Thursday so that Henry and I could rent a mini van to haul the gear home. I am currently returning empty handed because I need to make the second phase of a medical study in Kalamazoo.
If all goes well, insurance will declare the van totalled tomorrow, let Samantha and Henry take the gear home, and pay us back the value of the van (whatever that is…).
This whole ordeal caused us miss our last tour date in Champaign and a show on the 21st in Kalamazoo with The New Diet. Worst of all, we were just getting to the climactic ending of Total Recall when the van broke down. Major bummer!
Henry, Josh and I have decided to put off any future tours until we can save up for a more reliable means of transportation. This means we will no longer be joining Batcave on thier July tour. I am also looking into converting a van to run on veggie oil. We plan to return to the road more prepared and better than ever!
If anyone would like to contribute to our goal, we’ll be launching a big sale on alreadydeadtapes.com in attempts to speed up our recovery. FUCK KICKSTARTER
Thank you everyone for your constant support. Special thanks to Joe Hess, Josh Jekkins and Marty Reuters for housing us, driving us around and being generally awesome in our time of need.
Here’s some pics: