I have a car. She and I usually get along quite well, but sometimes she needs a bit of extra attention. For example, she recently broke her shoe (flat tire), and I know how frustrating it can be when a heel breaks. You can’t really walk, and until it’s either fixed or you replace the shoes, you’re quite miserable.
I’m pretty sure that’s how my car felt as I tried to leave work the other day. She was incredibly sluggish. As in, it’s really cold and I refuse to get out of bed and deal with the day, sluggish. I got out and looked her up and down. That’s when I noticed it--the flat tire.
My first thought was to call my brother (who is a mechanic). My second thought was, “I’m a fully capable woman, and I can change my own darn tire!”
I’d never changed a tire before. I saw my mom put a spare on once… when I was 10.
Yeah, I got this!
Laugh if you must. I know I’m being overly dramatic about changing a tire. It’s really not that hard, and I know that now. Between my owner’s manual and using the Library’s Wi-Fi to watch an instructional YouTube video, I was able to successfully take off the flat, put on the spare, and then drive to my mechanic.
This is a true story! Photographic evidence!
I tell you this story because it got me thinking a lot about car repair, and how little I know. Changing a tire isn’t complicated, but some things are. Thankfully the library has a lot of great resources to help. One of my favorites (and totally accessible online) is Auto Repair Reference Center. I love it because you can select your car’s year, make and model, then get information about your car specifically. What information? Diagnostic and repair information, labor time guides and estimates, specifications and maintenance schedules, how-to guides (including how to change a tire), and so much more.
At the very least, when I go to my mechanic I can sort of sound like I know what I’m talking about.
I don’t know cars well, but Auto Repair Reference Center is really helping me learn more, and at least sound more knowledgeable. I won’t try fixing cars myself (a librarian can only do so much), but I can certainly help you find information on how to do it!