Yep. It happened. My car blew an engine.
Before you think ill of me, I *had* been taking it in regularly for oil changes and other normal maintenance. I'd already replaced a transmission, torque converter, tires, water pump, alternator, etc. -- and I've only owned the "Stormtrooper" (white '99 Ford Escort SE wagon where a previous owner chose to apply fairly dark window tint on most of the windows behind the driver...) a little over a year and a half.
The initial estimate was straightforward. Then they started opening things up. Add the extra for a long block (OK, so there is some offset, but a thousand dollars added to the bill). ANOTHER torque converter, because the last set of yay-hoos who had it apart put it back together with a coarse thread nut on a fine thread welded-in stud.
And I'm sitting here for a week already without my car, and that means a whole lot more in scattered-everywhere north Texas / DFW than it might on one of the coasts of the USA where there actually is something resembling a decent public transportation system. (I've got as much as six miles or so to the nearest bus stop,)
Enough venting for now...