I am in my car, backing out of the garage. My mom is in the passenger seat, yelling at me, warning of some arcane danger, and the entire atmosphere in the car is so cramped that I start to put the top down. Unfortunately, the top-down-putting mechanism destroys most of the front left of the car.

You're probably thinking this is just the sort of irony and Freudian imagery typical of the dreams of a sociopathic recluse, but it is actually a pretty unambiguous metaphor for the following situation:

I am tied up in Poe's acclaimed pit and pendulum, wondering exactly how the restraint is fashioned that escape might be possible at all. It seems to me that simple manacles would make be an efficient and effective solution, but apparently Poe did not concur.