Thursday, July 8, 2010

Presumption and Ignorance

My lifelong friends
(by R.P.Edwards)

Ignorance and presumption
Acquainted well, are we
From childhood’s first reasonings
To the graying years…of me
And I ponder all the treasures lost
From wayward paths of choice
And pray what’s left
Is now bereft
Of that old, familiar…voice

And I wonder, as I’m slowly accelerating on a somewhat lengthy on-ramp that will mesh me into a near freeway speed state highway; I wonder, as I tilt to one side and remove my back-pocket wallet and deftly extract a flosser (you know, one of those plastic dental floss holder things) from the supposed-to-be money slot and, accelerating, I put my focus into the rear-view mirror and pluck the hard-to-get remnants of my just polished off homemade sausage, egg, English-muffin from between a couple not-so-white teeth (don’t want to gross out the guys at the used tire place), I wonder; does the new anti-texting law in Illinois apply to such multi-taskers as I?  Probably not.  But there may be a “distracted driver” provision on the books.  So be it.  “Patooey!”

I noticed the vibration a while back.  Not much at first…but definitely there.  Well, it didn’t improve with age and, since I usually occupied a front seat (passenger side [mama likes to drive]), it seemed to me that the right front was the area of concern.  Now, since I had my own ride, I didn’t give it much regard but, with the ongoing news from the mrs--and the occasional firsthand experience of the “symptoms”--I finally got to the point where I had to (sigh) “do” something.

Okay, what to rule out.  Tires…last time I looked they were fine.  Maybe a front end problem?  Possible, we had some not-so-stellar maintenance done a while back; maybe something’s bent or broken?  How about some loose lug nuts (actually had a tire come violently disconnected due to this oversight).  So, given a window of opportunity (trapped in a parking lot while my wife had a half hour “appointment”) I started at the front right to see if there was any give to the rubber riders and, naturally, I began where I “presumed” the trouble was.  Nothing.  Then, I worked my way counterclockwise.  When I get to the back left…it looked a little weird.  Sort of bulging.  I checked the PSI.  It was right on.  I then reached in and over to give it a good tug and--a gotcha moment later--the skin-piercing steel belt said a hardy “hello!”  Yes, the tire was literally shredding to pieces.  So, understandably, the rest of my “waiting” time was consumed with taking off the offender and putting on the cute, temporary donut. 

Lesson learned.  Presumption, once again, steers me the wrong direction.  Ignorance (my car knowledge is limited) conspired with the former and, but for the grace of God, mama would have been on the side of the road…and none too happy.  Yes, in my problem solving I should have started where the rubber meets the road but…I “knew” better.  And, since I can’t leave without a connecting corollary, allow me me to make this observation: concerning the plethora of problems that currently assail the United States, we Americans continue to "presume" that our relationship with our Creator is just hunky-dory, so we, naturally, skip that foundational step.  Perhaps, my fellow citizens, before the ultimate blow-out, we should reconsider...and pray.

Comments welcome.


jeftex said...

You hit the nail right on the head with this one.

R.P. Edwards said...

Yes Jeff, P & I are ever with us. Sadly, my hope that age would naturally add wisdom...nope. And, as far as the nation is concerned, hopefully these "hard" times will help us to "do" something. Like collectively fall to our knees.

All the best, and thanks for the comment.