2019 Jeep Compass 4x4 Limited

If you’ve paid any atten­tion to my sparse autowrit­ing since 2013, you might’ve noticed that I’ve found myself chron­i­cling my jour­ney to kill every last brand bias-born igno­rant assump­tion with­in my per­spec­tive for clarity’s sake. It required Juke NISMO and Xter­ra wheel­time for me to under­stand the strengths of my favorite ado­les­cent tar­get, Nis­san, and just one night out with the Cross­Cabri­o­let to see its short­com­ings. Eight years in prox­im­i­ty to CR-V own­er­ship in tan­dem with an active aca­d­e­m­ic effort to look at South Korea’s then-upcom­ing place in the indus­try empir­i­cal­ly let down the mys­ti­cal aura in which Hon­da once dwelled for me through­out my lat­er child­hood. Dri­ving the Eco­Boost Mus­tang in Port­land last year was a bru­tal­ly epiphanous smack in the face as I began to real­ize just how con­fused this country’s rela­tion­ship with his­toric brand iden­ti­ties (and how they should be rep­re­sent­ed in the present) has become. How can mar­ques like “Mus­tang” and “Jeep” pos­si­bly mean any­thing after both the engi­neer­ing and con­sumer expec­ta­tions have changed so dras­ti­cal­ly? For all the mar­ket­ing, PR, and edi­to­r­i­al tal­ent employed by the remain­ing car giants, one won­ders how many peo­ple on the car com­pa­ny meal tick­et live moment to excru­ci­at­ing moment in full-body mor­tal ter­ror.

I haven’t writ­ten a car review in years, but I thought I should take the oppor­tu­ni­ty to con­front what I hope to be my last tox­ic brand bias. To tell you the truth, I have absolute­ly no clue how or why the desire for objec­tive auto­mo­tive puri­ty remains with­in my soul, or why I’ve trea­sured it so. I must also con­fess that my com­pul­sion to spend much time on the sub­ject of this par­tic­u­lar prod­uct is less intense than the sort I gen­er­al­ly hope to car­ry along when embark­ing upon this sort of thing. Of course, I am always open to and want­i­ng for even the most brazen crit­i­cism, so you should always feel free to blame me per­son­al­ly. Oth­er­wise, please point the way to the last auto­mo­tive media monastery. Ulti­mate­ly, my life depends on my con­tin­ued belief in the jour­ney, regard­less of whether or not the des­ti­na­tion actu­al­ly exists.

Believe it or not, I once had an awful­ly agri­cul­tur­al dri­ving expe­ri­ence with a restored civil­ian Willy’s from the ear­ly 1950s, which couldn’t have con­trast­ed more against the past three weeks I’ve spent with the 2019 Jeep Com­pass, which has — per­haps above all else — an absolute­ly hor­ren­dous name. It’s a cheap joke, but I can’t imag­ine it ever falling flat: that cold, round, steel, entire­ly unas­sist­ed steer­ing wheel has been replaced with a heat­ed leather unit con­nect­ed to an electro­mechan­i­cal rack that leaves embar­rass­ing­ly lit­tle required effort from its oper­a­tor. I can’t be both­ered with a con­fir­ma­tion, but I sus­pect the lot of it was sourced from Fiat, which would make any old Jeep cus­tomer from the Grand Cherokee’s gold­en era fall imme­di­ate­ly ill — if you could actu­al­ly man­age to con­vince them you weren’t jok­ing, that is. This mod­el year appar­ent­ly starts at $21,095 (I say we try to find one of those,) but my “Limited”-specced exam­ple would man­age to set you back a mid-bog­gling $33,045 with its decent­ly-com­posed CarPlay-equipped info­tain­ment sys­tem wear­ing an appro­pri­ate­ly-obnox­ious hexag­o­nal­ly-themed user inter­face, heat­ed leather seats, steer­ing wheel, and door mir­rors, key­less entry, and a few more checked check­marks which aren’t par­tic­u­lar­ly rel­e­vant or inter­est­ing. Con­sid­er­ing, I must (per­haps unfair­ly) insert some con­clu­sive com­men­tary already: this vehi­cle is fuck­ing over­priced. Pre-research, I was briefly impressed by the rumor that my car was priced almost $8,000 less, which would almost make it a bar­gain, but — God be with them — there real­ly are Amer­i­cans out there spend­ing more than $30,000 on these every day.

To be hon­est, I’m grow­ing very tired of dri­ving Fiat Chrysler Auto­mo­biles that come from the fac­to­ry com­plete­ly let down by their dri­ve­trains. It’s been over five years since new auto­mat­ic-equipped Dodge Darts so thor­ough­ly dis­ap­point­ed even the least-dis­cern­ing own­ers with its dri­ving behav­ior thanks to the transmission’s hor­ren­dous­ly-fudged map­ping. The Com­pass’ 9-speed ZF gear­boxf looks great on paper — for some thir­ty years, the Friedrichshafen name has been the badge of the industry’s most dynam­i­cal­ly capa­ble avail­able pair­ings with any giv­en lux­u­ry pow­er plant — but the real­i­ty of Jeep’s exe­cu­tion is despi­ca­bly dis­cour­ag­ing. No, it’s not as entire­ly-com­pris­ing as the Dart’s, but it’s cer­tain­ly bad enough to war­rant rec­om­mend­ing check­ing out the “4x4 Man­u­al” trim if you insist on Com­pass own­er­ship, which should at least enable more hands-on dri­vers to make the best of the model’s inescapably inad­e­quate 180 horse­pow­er 2.4 Liter four. It’s not hope­less, by any means, but its ~3,500 lb. bur­den requires a sig­nif­i­cant amount of work in nor­mal dri­ving from who­ev­er is mak­ing gearchange deci­sions — whether they ulti­mate­ly be human or mis­pro­grammed com­put­er. Stay­ing with traf­fic on a typ­i­cal Unit­ed States high­way will require them often — attack­ing fair­ly mod­er­ate inclines in such a set­ting at a cruise con­trolled 76mph had my exam­ple down­shift­ing three whole gears to tack­le in a man­ner notice­able enough to breach the uncon­scious thresh­old of even the least mechan­i­cal­ly-empa­thet­ic oper­a­tor.

More than most oth­er cat­e­gories, the Com­pass’ place among the new­born “Com­pact Sport Util­i­ty” seg­ment should be exam­ined with thor­ough cri­tique. When I brought it up with a good friend of mine (whom I shall men­tion again very short­ly,) he intro­duced me to the term “Mall Crawler,” which I’ve des­per­ate­ly need­ed to describe a spe­cif­ic com­part­ment of local car cul­ture for sev­er­al years now.

Jeep, Nis­san, and Sub­aru have entered into this no man’s land of bud­get-friend­ly crossovers that strad­dle the unclaimed dimen­sion­al­i­ty between sub­com­pact and com­pact crossovers with the Jeep Com­pass, Nis­san Rogue Sport, and Sub­aru Crosstrek. Bonus: All three are new to the mar­ket this year.

Yes, those who are seri­ous­ly con­sid­er­ing a pick from this seg­ment should con­sid­er this MotorTrend com­par­i­son of the Com­pass, Rogue Sport, and Crosstrek and Car & Dri­ver’s review of the 2018 mod­el year to be required read­ing. I haven’t dri­ven either of the oth­er two com­pet­ing prod­ucts, though — for what it’s worth — my sis­ter and broth­er-in-law bought the lat­ter in 2017 and have noth­ing but good things to say, which con­firms Chris­t­ian Seabaugh’s first place endorse­ment of Subaru’s entry. To him, the “Trailhawk”-trimmed Com­pass “feels like an old-school body-on-frame SUV,” which is a con­sid­er­able com­pli­ment, and I’d at least par­tial­ly con­cur in the Limited’s case. It’s impor­tant to con­sid­er that my Com­pass was proud­ly equipped with what Jeep calls “4WD,” which is a procla­ma­tion I per­son­al­ly hadn’t seen brand­ed on any non-pick­up auto­mo­tive prod­ucts in a long time. (Then again, I’m almost pos­i­tive I saw such a badge on the back of a fourth-gen­er­a­tion CR-V the oth­er day, which seems aus­pi­cious, at best.) When I took the oppor­tu­ni­ty to pilot the con­fus­ing­ly-pseudo­plush Com­pass about a hand­ful of for­lorn coun­ty grav­el roads, it was much more com­pe­tent than I expect­ed. In fact, I’m not sure I could name a mod­ern, road-going vehi­cle from my own expe­ri­ence — includ­ing a vast assort­ment of pick­ups — which was any less per­turbed by loose lime­stone. After man­u­al­ly depress­ing the “4wd Lock” con­trol, it was sim­ply unstick­able in the most pre­car­i­ous cor­ner entries my local routes could muster, even when “ford­ing” a foot or two-deep crick.

I have made a lot of pub­lic assump­tions about Jeep Peo­ple, but I’m grate­ful to have had the oppor­tu­ni­ty to get to know a real one — my good friend Jack­son, a soft­ware engi­neer who’s owned a 1995 “YJ” Wran­gler, the Fiat 500L-based Rene­gade and now a 2014 Wran­gler — the last “real” Jeep. His exten­sive wis­dom is much appre­ci­at­ed and heav­i­ly-con­densed in the microin­t­er­view below. To explore fur­ther, tit­il­lat­ing top­ics like the “Jeep Funk,” I high­ly encour­age the curi­ous read­er to con­sult him per­son­al­ly. His per­spec­tive on the com­pa­ny and its patri­ot­ic his­to­ry is cer­tain­ly more sub­stan­tial than my own.

What does the Jeep brand mean to you in 2018?
It is a lega­cy, her­itage brand that car­ries with it the Amer­i­can fight­ing spir­it can-do atti­tude. It’s a state­ment of pride to dri­ve one of these vehi­cles. This is what I love about Jeep: they’re always the last ones to com­ply with any auto­mo­tive reg­u­la­tion. They were the last to imple­ment seat­belts. Airbags! My 1995 YJ didn’t have airbags! When you dri­ve a Jeep, you’re dri­ving a piece of his­to­ry… a piece of Amer­i­can His­to­ry! You’re dri­ving Amer­i­cana.

Which of your three Jeeps do/did you have the most intense feel­ings for?
The YJ. It was the full embod­i­ment of what Jeep is: 5-speed man­u­al, 4-cylin­der — a 2.4L or some­thing like that. Fat tires that over­loaded the engine. It wasn’t a vehi­cle to tra­verse the coun­try in. If I want­ed to take it off-road, I could. It was real­ly great in snow as well.

Should the Com­pass exist?
No.

It takes courage to attach one­self so pas­sion­ate­ly to any brand and true nobil­i­ty to retain a crit­i­cal per­spec­tive upon it. I promise this par­tic­u­lar attach­ment is much less nation­al­is­tic than it may sound in the con­text (Nazis don’t dri­ve Jeeps — they’re lit­er­al­ly still putting around in Kubel­wa­gens.) Jack­son is the polar oppo­site of the Jeep Bro stereo­type I’ve abused through­out my com­men­tat­ing years. He’s a sin­cere, self-made young man who believes in the core util­i­tar­i­an phi­los­o­phy of the Jeep brand, and — per­haps most impor­tant­ly — he’s very self-aware of his rela­tion­ship with its cult cul­ture, but I fear the loy­al­ty and emo­tion­al invest­ment of gen­uine Jeep Men like him shall only be at greater and greater risk as the industry’s glob­al­iza­tion con­tin­ues to accel­er­ate. From my per­spec­tive, the more rel­e­vant ques­tion going for­ward is whether or not the rest of us should mourn, and I’d bet it’ll con­tin­ue to deliv­er more informed dis­course in the com­ing years.

Goodbye, CR-V

After 9 or so years and over 100,000 miles, I have totaled my mother’s 2010 Hon­da CR-V — the car I drove cross-coun­try for the first time at sig­nif­i­cant dis­tance (St. Louis to Wash­ing­ton, D.C. in essen­tial­ly one sit­ting,) and once com­pli­ment­ed for being the best pos­si­ble aes­thet­ic com­pro­mise of its near-uni­ver­sal­ly and aggra­vat­ing­ly-com­pro­mised breed. It was my her first 1st own­er expe­ri­ence, which is frankly a bit of a shame. If I’m com­plete­ly hon­est, my late stepfather’s deci­sion to out­fit this utter­ly util­i­tar­i­an vehi­cle with enough kit to break the $30,000 with­in a seg­ment that has always clung to the 20s as one of its tru­ly com­mu­ni­ca­ble advan­tages feels less-than-ide­al in ret­ro­spect, but what can I say, real­ly? It was not exact­ly a proud thing, but it did trans­port a lot of young fam­i­lies and shel­ter us as we’ve nav­i­gat­ed more bliz­zard-like con­di­tions than should be the norm for what is, essen­tial­ly, an expen­sive, extend­ed Civic.

As per some par­tic­u­lars of my upbring­ing, I tend to get almost alarm­ing­ly attached to vehi­cles, but it’s hard to say I’m sad to see the CR-V go from all but the most sen­ti­men­tal sens­es. Objec­tive­ly, it’s sim­ply not as high-val­ue or as com­pe­tent a vehi­cle as it and its con­tem­po­raries are still made out to be by auto­mo­tive media, pop cul­ture, or the pre­sump­tions in the aver­age consumer’s dis­course. Though it was nev­er intend­ed to be lux­u­ri­ous, the result­ing auto­mo­bile end­ed up cost­ing real lux­u­ry mon­ey.

The Event

It’s odd to have been dri­ving so long with­out inci­dent (pret­ty soon I’m gonna be able to say “I’ve been dri­ving for twen­ty years, bitch!) and then sud­den­ly find one­self at fault for the acci­dent which claimed the life of the sin­gle most sub­lime, defin­ing object in his exis­tence. This inci­dent, though, was entire­ly the fault of the oth­er dri­ver. My best friend and I were North­bound, cross­ing the inter­sec­tion of Sta­di­um Boule­vard and Rock Quar­ry Road at pre­cise­ly the point where it becomes Col­lege Avenue, where we were t-boned direct­ly on the CR-V’s driver’s side rear wheel by a mid-2000s Maz­da 6 that decid­ed to run the red light. It’s hard to guess the speed of impact, but the driver’s side side airbags deployed (as you’ll see from the attached pho­to­graph,) and the CR-V was spun near­ly 270 degrees around the axis of the front wheels. Nei­ther of us nor the 6’s dri­ver was injured, but both of our vehi­cles are sure­ly totaled.

This image should be much less com­i­cal than it is.

Third-Generation CR-V Ownership

Two or three years ago, I record­ed some (not par­tic­u­lar­ly con­clu­sive or infor­ma­tive) thoughts with my iPhone as I drove the old engorged Civic to the gro­cery store, when ends abrupt­ly after I said “I think one time I did try to go fast.” Like most sur­viv­ing crossover name­plates, though, the nar­ra­tive began with a gen­uine­ly good idea: Hon­darize and mod­ern­ize the Suzu­ki Side­kick tem­plate on top of the Civic’s plat­form and charge just a bit more for it — and like the rest, too, the con­cept has soured tremen­dous­ly as both crossovers and the com­pact sedans upon which they’re based have grown and fat­tened under their ever-increas­ing bur­den of safe­ty and con­ve­nience fea­tures. (I say “bur­den” and not “expec­ta­tion,” specif­i­cal­ly because I know a grand total of zero informed peo­ple who are at all thrilled about increas­ing gross weights across every indus­try seg­ment.)

This CR-V was my mother’s first and only crossover fol­low­ing a three-car line of one or two-own­er-used, well-equipped V6 Accords in her garage — the lat­er two from the era when Honda’s mid-sized sedan became a sur­pris­ing­ly dynam­ic dri­ving machine as advances in dri­ve­train per­for­mance inter­cept­ed a point in the devel­op­men­tal time­line just before gross weights spiked up toward their cur­rent safe­ty and elec­tron­ic equip­ment-bloat­ed fig­ures. (In oth­er words: in the sweet spot when engines were grow­ing more pow­er­ful but just before the Accord and its peers got fuck­ing fat.) In 2010, the CR-V was almost attrac­tive look­ing as specced by my step­fa­ther: the com­bi­na­tion of the roof rack, bon­net bra, and EX-trim 5-spoke alloys man­aged to resolve most of the dis­crep­an­cies in the shapes I’ve seen from oth­er exam­ples, but it also drove its price above the $30,000 mark. To be fair to Hon­da, this deci­sion could almost be con­sid­ered a sortof breach of func­tion con­sid­er­ing the CR-V’s orig­i­nal ultra-mass-pro­duced, util­i­tar­i­an pur­pose.

Interior

Nei­ther the leather nor the nav/infotainment sys­tem has aged very well, but it should be said that the lat­ter is still 100% func­tion­al in 2018: it inter­faces well with my iPhone 8 Plus with only the occa­sion­al “this device is not sup­port­ed” hic­cup (eas­i­ly resolv­able by sim­ply re-boot­ing the con­nec­tion, in my expe­ri­ence.) I’m not sure how aston­ished I should be by the fact that the GPS still offers reli­able routes 99% of the time, albeit through a user inter­face design that seems to grow more and more dat­ed by the pass­ing few sec­onds one may have to wait for it to cal­cu­late. Accom­mo­da­tion remains about as uncom­fort­able as it was on day 1: thanks to its hard leather and the super-upright seat­ing posi­tion com­mon to crossovers, I must con­tin­ue to insist that oper­at­ing this car is a whol­ly unnat­ur­al expe­ri­ence, but its inte­ri­or sur­faces shall always place well in a con­test of robust­ness and longevi­ty, as they cer­tain­ly should.

Drivetrain

Per­haps the great­est let­down of this mod­el year (2010) is its lega­cy four-speed auto­mat­ic trans­mis­sion, and I assume the next year’s inclu­sion of a brand-new five-speed unit dras­ti­cal­ly improved its dri­ving expe­ri­ence. The spe­cif­ic regret one feels when such a devel­op­ment arrives a year after buy­ing any new car is one my step­fa­ther still didn’t deserve, yet he was not spared. How­ev­er, if you, the read­er, can­not be dis­suad­ed from buy­ing a CR-V of this gen­er­a­tion for what­ev­er god­damned rea­son, know that you must choose an exam­ple from 2011-onward if you want to retain your san­i­ty. No, ye olde four-speed wasn’t quite as bad as the trans­mis­sion that vir­tu­al­ly ruined Dodge’s new Dart sin­gle­hand­ed­ly, but it cer­tain­ly shows its age even for the most inat­ten­tive or mer­ci­less dri­ver. With­out it, I would vouch for the 2.4L four-cylinder’s per­for­mance as ade­quate, but its con­tri­bu­tion was and for­ev­er shall be let down by the aging transmission’s devel­op­ing Alzheimer’s. Sim­ply put: they are an unac­cept­ably mis­matched team.

Though I shall for­ev­er argue that part-time all-wheel-dri­ve is almost nev­er actu­al­ly jus­ti­fied in nor­mal use — and yet inad­e­quate for any “extreme” use, for that mat­ter — Honda’s hydraulic “Super-Han­dling All-Wheel-Dri­ve” did indeed aid our CR-V’s way in a hand­ful of cir­cum­stances through­out my mother’s own­er­ship, though nei­ther of our mem­o­ries of these are robust enough to cite specifics. The sin­gle no-bull­shit bliz­zard we expe­ri­enced was the same type I man­aged to nav­i­gate years lat­er in a sub-com­pact Chevro­let (the small­er of the Son­ic or the Spark — I can nev­er tell them apart) to reach MagFest 2016, if per­haps less intense. I would spec­u­late that the sys­tem increas­es mechan­i­cal drag — and there­fore fuel con­sump­tion — to a degree that couldn’t pos­si­bly jus­ti­fy what lit­tle aid it has offered in our use, at least.

Help­ing my moth­er look for a new car has been espe­cial­ly edu­ca­tion­al regard­ing exact­ly how good of a machine one can buy for $30,000. Though either of us have yet to dri­ve one, I think a two or three-year-old sin­gle-own­er Vol­vo S60 Estate would be the opti­mal choice for her, but like many Amer­i­cans, she seems unable to escape long-eclipsed cona­tions of the “Wag­on” vari­ety. I wish that I had the posi­tion, knowl­edge, and through-and-through con­vic­tion it would require to con­front this mas­sive­ly expen­sive under­stand­ing among the buy­ing pub­lic, but at the moment, I con­tin­ue to come up short. If you’re still with me, I must say only this: crossovers are a scam, and you should put the minis­cule effort required to recheck the fig­ures behind the assump­tions you’re using to jus­ti­fy pur­chas­ing one. If and only if you accept that what­ev­er gain in car­go space, foot room, and over­all inte­ri­or vol­ume come at an extreme­ly high pre­mi­um in almost every sin­gle case and are still insis­tent on mak­ing the leap… Well, it’s your mon­ey.

Volvo and The Sun

Only in Port­land would you see a P1800ES wag­on at the gro­cery store in this sort of shape.

Also, here’s a few sun­set shots at dif­fer­ent expo­sures with my iPhone 8 Plus.

To Watch “Beloved Le Mans 24 Hour Endurance Race,” Whiny Bitch Turns to JavaOS

The 2018 24 Hours of LeMans is an hour away from its halfway mark and it looks like I will fail once again in my year­ly attempt to artic­u­late why it’s such an intense, one-of-a-kind expe­ri­ence, but I’ve includ­ed my progress in this go so far just below.


For 5 con­sec­u­tive Junes, I’ve made a point to stay up one whole week­end in order to fol­low “The Super­bowl of Motor­sport” — a few quaint men hurl­ing them­selves around a dou­ble-dig­it, flap­per-era French rib­bon in machines built specif­i­cal­ly to tor­ture them­selves with record-break­ing effi­cien­cy — to “wit­ness the pin­na­cle of engi­neer­ing, dri­ving, and ath­let­ic excel­lence.” In 2016, I even both­ered a young Extra­tone with this entire­ly off-beat event, which Tim, Kaleb and I unsuc­cess­ful­ly attempt­ed to stream on YouTube. Every year, I spend some of the day try­ing to artic­u­late why exact­ly this one race is so mag­i­cal. At 6 this morn­ing, this year’s 86th annu­al Cir­cuit des 24 Heures du Mans began with a green flag wav­ing more than 5100 miles away. Imme­di­ate­ly after­wards, Andre Lot­ter­er was too late to brake, crash­ing into Ben Han­ley and com­i­cal­ly releas­ing the entire nose of his LMP car. The release of a year’s worth of antic­i­pa­tion and prepa­ra­tion often makes the first few hours of the race feel like a mad dash.

You can­not spend one sec­ond look­ing back,” com­ment­ed a Radi­oLe­Mans host after just half a minute had passed. (I still can’t keep up with their names even after all these years, but they are step one of LeMans watch­ing.) By 6:11, the his­toric and infa­mous­ly-dan­ger­ous Cir­cuit de la Sarthe was declared wet. Since 2015, I’ve cheered on a par­tic­u­lar Brazil­ian veg­an called Fer­nan­do Rees through two tours with Aston Mar­tin Rac­ing – my favorite team – and one with Corvette, last year, but nei­ther he nor his team are present this time.

Com­mit­ted­ly keep­ing up with a motor­sport event designed more for man­u­fac­tur­ers and stark tra­di­tion than its fans – the luck­i­est of whom nap in track­side tents amid the rain and com­bus­tive son­ic hell on the oth­er side of the plan­et – which has served as the pin­na­cle emo­tion­al, phys­i­cal, and tech­ni­cal tri­al (yes, in that order) through­out the entire his­to­ry of auto rac­ing does not sound like a pos­i­tive expe­ri­ence, but emo­tion­al­ly, I’ve become deeply inter­twined with LeMans and formed a rela­tion­ship with it like no oth­er has approached or even approx­i­mat­ed with any oth­er sport­ing event. I wish I knew enough about the his­to­ry and tech­ni­cal­i­ties of endurance motor­sport to write about it pro­fes­sion­al­ly because the sto­ries it gen­er­ates are always engag­ing, no mat­ter what. Jack­ie Chan and Patrick Dempsey are LeMans’ most rec­og­niz­able patrons to the gen­er­al pub­lic.


My beloved Le Mans 24 Hour Endurance Race has start­ed. I can not close my eyes until Toyota’s vic­to­ry moment. Shar­ing impres­sion of LM to all over the world#LeMans24 pic.twitter.com/m8mattD1By

— ぽめぽめ51 (@51chanman1) June 16, 2018

(SAME.)

It’s long since been rea­son­able for me to pre­tend I’m able to com­plete­ly sep­a­rate auto­mo­tive top­ics from Extra­tone, so I final­ly gave in and cre­at­ed a Honk chan­nel in our Dis­cord. Please feel free to stop by and/or invite your friends with the link extratone.com/honkdiscord.

Spectre Open

The break­ingtrend­ing news about my dear­est lit­tle Libel is prob­a­bly quite bad. It turns out, my charg­er cable trip­ping inci­dent a few weeks ago was a tru­ly-destruc­tive one. I not only destroyed the X360’s DC port but the port’s brack­et as well. Would you believe me if I told you I actu­al­ly found cof­fee stains on the bot­tom of its cool­ing fan? I expe­dit­ed a new port and strug­gled to install it today — though I orig­i­nal­ly got its charg­ing indi­ca­tion LED to light up pos­i­tive­ly, the fid­dling that was required, fol­low­ing appears to have dam­aged either the new part or the machine, itself — I can no longer elic­it any response from it what­so­ev­er. I have a feel­ing some sol­der­ing would do the trick, but every day with­out a com­put­er of my own to use presents a prob­lem if I’m to accom­plish any Extra­tone-relat­ed work at all.

Please give me a break: the last time I had to dis­as­sem­ble a com­put­er to this extent, Dual-Core CPUs were just becom­ing afford­able. The prop­er avenue for the cable is also less than an after­thought, yad­da yad­da, etc. etc. (“The Open Web” refers only to my right to com­plain to absolute­ly no one but The Good Gourd.)

Spectre DC Port

Google Ana­lyt­ics is act­ing a fool (it turns out, all I need­ed to do to get us back up in search results for “Extra­tone” was com­plete­ly break my account,) but I’ll be damned if authen­ti­cat­ing The Extranet with Bing wasn’t the quick­est web-admin­is­tra­tive task I’ve ever done. Less than 60 sec­onds to ver­i­fy and approve com­pre­hen­sive sitemaps — no fuck­ing lie. Despite our huge down­time at the begin­ning of the year, both it and Duck­Duck­Go were quick to rec­og­nize us as the top rel­e­vant result for “Extra­tone,” leav­ing only Google to Square The Fuck Up. Grant­ed, you’re appar­ent­ly more like­ly to be sent our way if you’re look­ing for “opg,” “om6,” “u3u,” or “ruu.” If that’s how you’ve end­ed up here, wel­come and con­grat­u­la­tions! This is, indeed, the place you’ve sought.

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Editor’s Note: Please dis­re­gard the JavaOS data — that’s all me.