I know the comic is sometimes late by several hours in some cases, or doesn’t end up getting posted until the next day in others, but this time I have a really, really good excuse (or really, really bad excuse, depending on the way you look at it): Many of you JEFbot readers may remember the “BOTmobile” – my Honda Civic Hatchback as seen in this strip – well, while driving home from work Monday night, my car’s temperature gauge suddenly went from “normal” to “screamingly hot” within what seemed like just a few seconds, and I was barely able to drift my vehicle off of busy Sunset Boulevard and onto a neighboring side street before coming to a dead stop, steam billowing out of my hood. After waiting for the car to cool off, I checked the radiator and engine to make sure they had the correct amount of fluids, which they did, but the car wouldn’t even begin to turn over, and I ended up having to gather all my things and walk home from Beverly Hills to West Hollywood (just a couple of miles, but it felt like more carrying a 17″ laptop and all my folders and paperwork from the office.) Needless to say, that kind of put a damper on getting home in time to finish drawing Tuesday’s strip, as it was pretty late by the time I was able to stumble through my door that night.

The next morning, I took the day off from work, got the car towed to my mechanic and then walked back the few miles to my apartment (I’ve gotten a lot of exercise in the past couple days) to anxiously wait for the diagnosis. When it came, it wasn’t good. Basically, something inside the engine had busted (duh) which resulted in a blown head gasket. Also, coolant from the radiator had somehow gotten inside the engine which was causing it to heat up almost instantly, as soon as the mechanic would start it. It seemed the only way to fix the car would be for the engine to be rebuilt, which would cost more than my poor BOTmobile was actually worth. In brief: the rest of the day was spent hoofing it back and forth from the auto shop getting all the stuff out of my car, making calls to figure out what I was going to do with the vehicle, finally getting the car donated and towed off, then researching online what kind of new car I could afford and where to get it.

As stressful as all this was, the experience could have been much worse. If my car had broken down at work (35 miles away), or a few minutes earlier as I was going over Coldwater Canyon instead of in Beverly Hills (recommended, if you’re going to be stuck), it could’ve been a nightmare. I’ve also been anticipating getting a new car over the past year or so (my car currently has over 300,000 miles on it), so I wasn’t completely unprepared. While I would’ve preferred to wait until later in the year to buy something new, I’m happy I was forced to do this now, rather than on the way, say, to a comic convention with all my JEFbot stuff in the car.

Anyway, just wanted to let you guys know why the strip isn’t up. I’ll keep you updated on the BOTmobile saga as it plays out, and if all goes well, I’ll be able to work on the strip today and get it posted later tonight. Thanks for your patience.