Saturday, June 13, 2015

Knowledge, power, and the aging car

Source: girlfixyourowncar.com


I am never hot. When an 80F day presents itself, I tentatively don capri pants and a short sleeve shirt, but I still carry a sweater, just in case.

Last week was different.

A beautiful, sunny weather pattern had me pulling up my hair, rolling up my sleeves, and gasping for air. My 10-year-old Nissan Armada had suddenly transformed from a vehicle to a Japanese made tandoor oven, which I was quite sure was cooking me alive. The air-conditioning was broken.

There was a time in my life when I could easily throw money at this problem. And while I drove around Cleveland, sweating like a pig, I repeatedly thought about the truth in the phrase "money is power."

And so, to be honest, I was pissed. Because I was feeling powerless, and I was blaming it on lack of cash flow.

With no other choice, I dug in and vowed to fix this problem on my own. I became a YouTube junkie, as I culled through hundreds of videos on car A/C and how to fix it. I bombarded social media with questions about my car, and I finally took a trip to the auto parts store to put my new found knowledge to the test. There I found a young high school girl who knew more about cars than I do about varieties of vegetables. She listened carefully as I explained my problem and the questions that arose as I researched online. She accompanied me to my car and observed and critiqued my work as I turned on the car, checked to see if the AC Compressor was engaged, and looked for the necessary port to add Freeon.

Ten minutes later my air conditioner was blowing cold air. I'd fixed my problem with a little effort and $30. I was genuinely proud of myself. Money may be power. But that day, knowledge was power, and it was extremely satisfying.

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