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What I Learned This Week – 3/19/17

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I am sure many of you were already aware of what I am about to tell you. But, this series of posts is called “What I Learned This Week”, not “What Everyone Else Already Knew.” So, ya.

I left work for my lunch break on Tuesday, something I don’t usually do. When I went to restart my car, it wouldn’t start. I’m a woman, so my only guess was my battery was dead, although it had started up just fine a half hour prior. And the dashboard lights were acting…unusual. They would all come on and sort of dance when I turned the key to try to start the car. Even where the “P” usually lights up to tell me it is in Park, it was cycling through and lighting up “R”, “N”, “D”, and “1” as well. It truly was the strangest thing.

I tried to jump it–nothing.

I have a cuter picture of it with a Christmas tree on top, but it would take me forever to find it.

I called in my husband, who while not a trained mechanic, totally understands engines and how to take them apart and put them back together. (I, on the other hand, believe they run on hamsters on wheels and fairy dust.) The crazy lights with the lack of success at jumping had him convinced it was an electrical problem.

During the next 24 hours, we proceeded to juggle the one remaining car and our two jobs and elementary school pick-up of M. I contemplated the hassle of having to pay a tow truck to tow my car the literally .3 miles my car died from the actual dealership. But as crappy as all that was, I have to admit the timing was actually fortunate because my husband was still home to assist me.

But while my husband was at work, I realized something…

In the old days when your battery died, it just died. Your headlights were weak, nothing would work. You could just jump it back to life and be on your way.

What I realized is that we don’t live in that time anymore. (Let me take this opportunity to reiterate that I don’t understand how a car engine totally works.) We live in a time where computers are ingrained into everything from our cars to our televisions to our electric toothbrushes. Computers are made by humans. Computers have unnecessary safety features. Computers fuck up.

I remembered that the second time my battery died in my beloved Aztek, I thought it had an electrical problem. Turned out that the battery got so low, that it tripped the anti-theft system. See what I mean about computers having unnecessary safety features?

So I hypothesized my battery had just gotten low enough that the car was like “Ya, we are done with this battery” without actually giving me a clear message that that was the case. Figuring that would be the least expensive option, I talked my husband into taking it to O’Reilly’s and getting it checked out. Sure enough, it was dead. After we spent some more time in a parking lot in a -10F degree windchill, it started right up.

The lesson this week kids is if your car is acting goofy and you have no idea how old your battery is, it may just be that you need a new battery. Your car is not your grandfather’s car. Unless, you know, it is. But if your family has children early, then chances are your grandfather’s car could be computerized as well. My family waits to have our offspring. My dad drove a Ford LTD from the 1970s. I am pretty sure it would have exhibited the standard blasé of a car with a dead battery. 🙂

From the broken mind of Jennifer Friess, the joining of hearts & souls…
NOW AVAILABLE! Troll Gurl and the Cursed Kingdom

What I Learned This Week – 12/1/13

Big Tree at The Toledo Zoo

Big Tree at The Toledo Zoo

I learned this week that my son has natural ice-skating abilities.  Well, to be more specific, at least he was not afraid to try it.  My son M had his 3rd birthday this week.  To celebrate, we went to the Toledo Zoo to see their Lights Before Christmas.  I had not been in years.  My husband and son had never been.  And this year the zoo was featuring ice skating as well.  My son had never been ice skating before.  I, for one, was very excited to go.

My husband and I took our ice skates and we rented some for M for only $3.  M could both stand and walk around on his skates off of the ice.  On the ice, he was able to stand by himself without falling.  When it came to the actual skating, he didn’t quite have the hang of it.  My husband had to hold onto him as they skated around.  But my son wasn’t scared of it, as he was with Santa Claus and Tow Mater.  He even asked to go back out when we took a break.

So sweet!

So sweet!

I could have stayed there all day.  But, alas, it was dark and cold and we all got hungry.  Maybe we will make it back again yet this year.

When we were headed home and I went to put my son in the car, I had to get him into his car seat while wearing his winter coat and snow pants, plus a few layers underneath.  I said, “I have to squeeze you in your seat like a sausage.  You are a sausage boy.”

He replied, “I not a sausage boy.  I a cake boy.”

I had made him a semi-elaborate cake earlier in the day.  I found the comment very funny.  I will post more on his birthday cake in a later post.

I also learned that the awesome version of “Carol of the Bells” that the zoo was using for their synchronized lights was by an artist named Callann Lane (a.k.a. Cali).  It is awesome and sort of electronic sounding.  I have liked the version by the TransSiberian Orchestra called “Christmas Eve Sarajevo” for a number of years.  But this year, I am digging on this version.

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