Surprise of surprises... car won't be ready today. My car will be ready when I return from San Francisco, and he has agreed to meet me Saturday morning to pick it up. Yes, I know deep down that my car is probably sitting in the shop right now untouched as it has been for a week. But he'll never admit to that, and going over there to cause a scene will just stress me out and leave me having to take it somewhere else and start the whole process over again.
As I said, there's a reason people liken taking their car to the body shop to "getting fucked". And in that light, I've realized it will go in a whole lot easier if I just stop fighting it. There's no room for versatility in the art of car repair. "Just remember to breathe."