austin_dern (austin_dern) wrote,

Can't we give ourselves one more chance?

One bit of incidents with my uncle. He's a fine person, you understand, and a great deal of fun, but he's also quick to pick the Correct Course of Action To Take and will follow his course with the sort of determination associated with extinction-level asteroid events. This is frustrating if you'd really like to eat at a different place than he would, but if you've got no plans it's a great way to tour at warp speed.

More background: I've been driving my dad's car, and you may have noticed a recurring theme the past month of car catastrophes like a shredded tire and a slip off the jack on my mom's car, and on top of that my dad's car had an alternator burn out and the brakes need replacement. And, for that matter, my uncle's car has been alternating between showing the ``service engine soon'' light and the ``door open'' light, when neither condition was true.

While I was on the way to fill up on gas, the ``tire pressure'' light on dad's car went on. The first treatment is to press the ``tire pressure button'' on the dashboard for about 30 seconds, which often makes the warning go away. I mentioned the problem to him, and he decided to Fix It. But the light went off with the button press and stayed off. He checked the tires, confirming they were all tire-shaped, and confirmed I knew the theory of tire-changing. (I've never successfully completed every last step in changing a tire.) So, at the McDonald's to which we went for a last restroom visit before our respective long drives, he went up to one of four young-adult males sitting at four consecutive tables and asked the rightmost one what he knew of tire pressure warning lights. The guy, showing remarkable poise, said the warning light could mean tire pressure was off, or that the sensor was faulty, so really, check the owner's manual and see what it makes of the symbols. My uncle asked if my parents' insurance covers roadside assistance (I don't think it does, but I claimed it did), and he made me promise that if the tire needed to be fixed I'd call. I don't think he was so happy all week as when he was giving me contingency plans.

The light, having gone off when I held down the button, stayed off the rest of the drive.

Trivia: In 1821 geologist William ``Strata'' Smith began offering a series of nine lectures for one guinea (21 shillings) for men, 15 shillings for women. Source: The Map That Changed The World, Simon Winchester.

Currently Reading: The Later Middle Ages, 1272 - 1485, George Holmes. Worth seeing how England turns out after the work put into it so far, eh?


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