Flat Tire Philosophy

Yesterday was supposed to be a great day. After I taught two classes in the morning, I was released for a personal half-day. My plan was to get an overdue oil change, do some Christmas shopping and watch the USA World Cup game.

But after the oil change, my tire pressure light came on. At first I was just annoyed, but when I pulled up to the first store, I could hear air coming out of the stem nozzle. After the oil change place told me they couldn’t do anything about it, I rushed to a tire place. There, they told me they could have it done by 7PM. It was 11:30 AM.

I wish I could say I dealt with this well. Thoreau talked about not getting thrown off by “nutshells and mosquito wings” that fell on the metaphorical train tracks. If a train was derailed by such small objects, it wouldn’t be a very good method of transportation.

But this problem seemed much larger to me. It was derailing my plans for the day.

I had to Uber to the bar I was going to watch the game at. Like, this is really a big problem, that I have to spend more time eating chicken wings and watching soccer? It took me a while to calm down, and by the time the USA game began my head was pretty straight.

Still, when it was over I was faced with potentially another three hours without a car. When I went to the shop, it seemed like it was going to take forever and the thought of sitting in the showroom for hours drove me crazy. I even had an Uber coming to take me home, which would have caused chaos for my wife and I in the morning.

But the associate there talked me into cancelling the Uber. My car was ready by the time my ride would have arrived. And the whole thing cost 19 bucks.

My philosophy was tested yesterday, and I failed that test. But another part of my philosophy is to learn from these incidents, and to try not to repeat the same behavior. I guess I’ll have to wait and see if I’m better next time.

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