My mechanic called while I was on the train to tell me that he replaced the starter motor and fixed the unrelated problem with the front end linkage, and I could have collected it today, but since I was already on the way north, I told him I'd come by Monday morning. Since he'd only recently done a front-end alignment on the van (and said he should have noticed this other problem at the time), he didn't charge me for a new alignment. It's still about $600 in repairs. He did, however, warn me that my tires are nearly expired and I need to replace them very soon. I'll have to hope they hold out until my next trip home, as I think we want to have them replaced up in Reno/Sparks rather than in the Bay Area. I'm not going to bother getting snow tires, however, because I don't have four-wheel drive. Whenever the conditions get bad enough to require chains over Donner Summit, they usually are "R-2" and only 4WD with snow tires are exempt. However, I will need to consider getting a somewhat softer, grippier tire given the number of trips I make over the mountains in the rain.
Walking back to my apartment on the way back from the VTA bus stop after riding the train back to Santa Clara, I popped into 7-Eleven for some small bits for dinner. To my surprise, I found new (2014 sell-by dates) cans of Dill Pickle Pringles, which other people told me over a year ago were discontinued. Obviously they must have made at least one more back of them.