If we can’t fix the car …

If we can’t fix the car maybe it’s time to get a new one, she said. We’ll go shopping this weekend.

So I ripped out the steering column and disconnected the ignition assembly. Wires dangled like entrails. Removed the ignition cylinder, took it inside, and dismantled it over paper towels on the dining room table. Hammered out set screws. Pulled off bolts. Found the wafers protruding from the cylinder and yanked them out with tweezers. Fished around the innards for greasy springs and removed them, too.

Reassembled the cylinder, shoved it back into the casing, jammed it all back into the steering column, snapped the plastic casing back in place. Happy it started. Wife happy.

Next day, the key was stuck in the ignition again. Whacked it with a hammer. Problem solved. Fixed for good now.