Monday, May 24, 2010

Charge it up

For the last several years Sean’s driven a company car. It’s his favorite perk of his job and makes the crazy hours and dealing with stupid stuff * the complexities of his work more bearable. He used to get a new car every three months; he holds on to them longer now, like maybe a full six months. I’ve often said our kids have no concept of how most people deal with vehicles – that they buy them and drive them until the wheels fall off. That conversation usually takes place after one of them says, “Dad, when are you getting a new car? You’ve had this one for two whole months?”

Well, Michael’s Fiero is helping to dispel their misconceived car notions. And fast.

The car, still Michael’s pride and joy, has a little trouble starting. But only sometimes. The first thought was the battery was dead.  Good news: Michael knows how to jump a car now!  Bad news: the car wouldn't crank after he tried to restart is.  So Michael took the whole battery down to Auto Zone; they charged it up and tested it and said it was working fine.

The second thought was something was draining the battery, because with the fresh charge the car would start right up, but after sitting overnight the car wouldn’t crank. So Michael would start it by popping the clutch, a maneuver he accomplished because he got Amy to push him down the street until it shuttered and sputtered and eventually started.

Michael and Sean spent hours out there checking lights and wires and connections, trying to find the drain. It was quality father/son time, and I was thankful for that. But I wanted that car fixed. And you know why, dear friends? Because Michael has had his license for 31 days. In those 31 days I have become accustomed to giving him a list and sending him on his way to pick up things I’d forgotten. Maybe a prescription that needed to be refilled. Maybe a few ingredients I’d overlooked. Maybe a diet Coke from McDonald’s... I NEED that car to work because I am loving not running as many errands.

Necessity is the mother of invention, and I needed a fix for that car. And I came up with it. “How about you just disconnect the battery when you get out of the car?” And guess what? It worked! It's a temporary fix, but I came up the answer to the car problem.

Score one for the communication major.

It’s amazing the solutions I can come up with when my supply of fountain diet Coke is threatened.


*This is a wifely comment and does not necessarily reflect the views of said employee. Quite honestly, it doesn't totally reflect the wife's view; if it did it would say, "dealing with the union and certain new employees who drive him crazy." **

** Wonder how long before I get a phone call from said employee...