So White Sox third baseman Juan Uribe apparently fancies himself a boat skipper, having recently bought a speedboat from a Chicago business for his personal use.
But what he apparently doesn't think of himself is a punctual navigator and his alleged failure to pick the boat up from the point of sale has sparked a tabloid outrage from the seller who says storing the boat is messing with his style.
On Aug. 20, Uribe bought the 23-foot powerboat from Gabino Arteaga, owner of Elston Express Auto Spa Inc., for $15,000. Uribe asked if he could store it at the car wash, 3060 N. Elston, for a couple of days. Arteaga agreed.
More than a month later, Uribe's boat is still there, taking up space that Arteaga says he needs for detailing cars. Arteaga, who claims to be neither a Cubs nor White Sox fan, said he's forced to park customers' cars on the street because the boat is in the way.
"This gentleman, because of who he is, feels he should be taking advantage of me," Arteaga said, staring at the gleaming black-and-white boat with cream-colored leather seats. "I'm just a regular person trying to make a living with a little business."
Compounding the problem is the fact that Arteaga is asking for $8,000 in storage fees before he releases the boat, which is where I side with Uribe. Frankly, $200 a day seems a bit high for boat storage. If that is indeed the going rate, I'm going to spend my lunch break assessing how many boats my back yard could store for the winter.
However, if Mr. Arteaga would like a little advice, I'd tell him he's going about this the wrong way. What he should do is call up Uribe, tell him he'll pitch him a ball low and in the dirt and Uribe will be there right away to swing at it. (Second and third ones, too.)
Or, with the way things are going for Uribe and Sox up in Minnesota, he could just wait until Monday.