I don’t know just when it happened, but I one day realized I never check the tire pressures any more. I used to check them at least every week or so. Carried a pressure gage right in the car. It was important. My dad always said so. Of course, that was in the dark ages of automobile history when trips were measured in the number of flats you had.

Then I realized I hardly ever – no, I NEVER check the oil either. I had to laugh: I remember when guys got together they always got around to talking about gas milage and how many quarts you used between 1000 mile changes.

I mean I’m a machine type of guy. I know machinery. I know what it is, how it came to be and what to do when I find some. I love fiddling with machinery. All I can figure is that the tires hold their air better these days and as far as oil is concerned, I don’t even carry an extra can anymore. Are cars that much better? Do they not need me like they used to?

The car culture is a wonder of the modern world. At least in my neighborhood. I think it is funded and promoted by the Auto Parts Enterprise Stores of America . (A.P.E.S. of America) I think their ultimate goal is “An Auto Parts Store on Every Corner”.

I miss going into those places filled with things you need if you love your car and country. It seems that every time I visited my local auto parts store, there was a customer at the counter covered with dirt, grease and sweat purchasing a muffler, an engine block, a drive shaft and a set of new socket wrenches. Usually all I wanted was four spark plugs, a point set and condenser, and a new feeler gage. If you don’t know what those things are, it won’t help to explain as there are no modern automobiles that know what they are either, except for the spark plugs and most of the time you can’t even see them anymore.

Every once in a while I look beneath the hood of my VW diesel and look for something I can do. I can check the oil but it’s always the same: full. I could check the battery. Same thing: full. I can go find my old tire gage and check the tire pressures. Same thing: full. After a while, I begin to feel – well not unneeded, but more like tolerated.

My heart skipped a beat the other day during a rain shower when my wipers began leaving streaks! Oh no! This means a trip to the auto part store near me soon. And I know how to install them too. I am already feeling more manly. That’s a big deal at my age.

1 Comment

  1. David Henderson

    I’ve got a left-handed febeltroid spanner I will loan you.

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