2002 dodge ram 1500 won't start randomly with now warning. No dash lights, headlights or any electrical function with the key in any position. The battery is new, connected properly, and with bright connections securely fastened. Ground & hot leads are securely fastened to chassis/block and starter/alt. There is a faint ticking from behind the cluster in the dash, pulsing like a flashes but at a slower hertz/cycle than turn flashers. This happened twice before and both times the scenario played like this: car wouldn't start - no signs of any life - only faint tick behind cluster. Next, sometime later, maybe an hour, dash lights come on but nothing when the key is turned. No starter click, nothing. Next, maybe another hour, try the key again, starter will "hammer" when the key is turned. Not just the telltale single click with a key turn, but a hammering like an armature responding to a short. Next, an hour or so, try again, car starts but won't stay running at idle. You got to keep your foot in it and it acts and smells of gas a little like it's been flooded. Some time later again, runs fine. The cycle has happened twice at least and as of now, this last time, has not made it past the dead dash stage. I did notice the hot side battery terminal getting hot (temperature wise) during my attempts at starting it by turning the key. Mild ticking behind the dash the whole time. Oh and that stops when you turn the key, then resumes. I, personally, am pretty sure there's a short somewhere or a faulty ground, maybe in the fuse block (FCM?) That may be forcing some other path to ground. Any ideas on this one?