If you do an Internet search for"AAA" you will find organizations like the American Accounting Association, AAAMath for people who need basic math skill refreshers, an arbitration and mediation service, AAA Clip Art, the American Anthropological Association, The American Ambulance Association and a whole lot of stuff in which you wouldn't be interested. You will also find the American Automobile Association. They are easy to find unless you need them.

After several incidents involving, or in these cases, not involving the AAA, I've come to the conclusion that their motto should be: "We'll be there to help you if it's convenient for us."

Incident #1.  I was hauling a horse trailer up to the Byers Peak trailhead near -- well it's not actually near anything except Byers Peak. It is in Colorado. Half way up the road to the trailhead my truck dumped all of it's transmission fluid and I was stranded. My friend Pam was following me pulling another horse trailer. She took her horse trailer and horses back to the ranch and returned to get my horse and trailer, but that didn't solve my truck problem.

What do you do when your vehicle breaks down? You call AAA.  I called and explained the situation. They informed me that since I was not on a county maintained road, they would not come out. I explained that it was a federal road -- which was slightly misleading, but it was a U.S. Forest Service road. They weren't persuaded. Then I came up with plan B.  I told AAA I would have my truck pushed or towed down to the county road so that they would be able to help me. The county road was only about two miles away and Pam could tow me that far.

Nope! No way, said triple A. Since I didn't break down on a county maintained road they wouldn't help me. "&$#@%"  I ended up calling a towing service in Kremmling, CO. A guy who looked like Rip Van Winkle arrived in a 1962 Chevrolet tow truck and towed my 1999 Dodge truck about 20 miles to the dealership.

Incident #2:  My friend Sharon was at the local watering hole in Grand County, Colorado. The bar is half way between Kremmling and Granby Colorado on US 40. She locked her keys in her car and had to call AAA.  They said, "Sorry but we have no one in that area who can help you."  There were, however, plenty of drunks in the bar who were more than willing to lend their expertise, and Sharon was soon in her car and back on the road.

What AAA doesn't tell you is that their service is similar to cell phone service. If you happen to be in their service area, you are in luck. If not, tough!

Now I have a new truck. If I break down my extended warranty pays for towing -- and if they don't cover it all, my insurance company does. If I lock my keys in my truck, my extended warranty also pays for someone to come and open my truck. And if I run out of gas...  I've never in my life run out of gas. That's why they put gas gages on vehicles. And I have a spare tire and am quite able to fix a flat. If you don't know how change a tire, then you probably shouldn't be driving.

AAA -- bite me!

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