Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Making do

With a list to check off and items to disperse, I left home with plenty of time to attend to the dash brake light warning me that the slow leak from the master cylinder had reached that point where the reservoir float wasn’ting. I had to get gas anyway.

I wasn’t prepared to see antifreeze outside of the radiator. Looked like it might have been a cap issue, but I wasn’t willing to make that call, this the third radiator for my rig in less years. I called my mechanic, the gentleman from whom I happened to have bought the rig.

—Bring it by. We’ll take a look.

—It’ll have to be quick. I’m on my way to Portland.

It wasn’t quick, and I began to put on hold a list and stash items behind the seats. Yet, thoroughness is better than breaking down thirty miles from coming or going, and as a bonus I was told a story worth retelling.

But first, I told one of mine during the examination and diagnosis, brake related, driving from the far northwest side of Chicago to the near west side without brakes, a considerable distance of side streets, coasting and timing lights. I stressed the distance more than the strategy, the big picture easier some twenty-five years later, and therefore knew the telling suffered.

Still, my mechanic’s memory was stirred, which I recognize happens; when one story is told, another’s can be sparked.

The journey started somewhere in the high desert in Eastern Oregon, yet the adventure began midway between Burns and Bend, some three hours from home for him and his admittedly heavy foot. His gas pump ceased or seized (couldn’t help myself but won’t bother to draw out the finer distinctions). What to do?

He emptied his washer fluid, siphoned gas to fill that reservoir, rigged his washer fluid line to his carburetor, and using the little washer fluid button on his steering column, fed gas to the engine, stopping to ‘fill ‘er up’ every twelve miles or so, through the remaining desert, into and over the Cascades, and on home, much of the last part downhill. Total time: seven hours.

It was determined that my radiator cap was faulty, and after a short search on the back shelves, a new one was found, even though he had no idea where it had come from. No charge. I thanked him and said my goo…

I believe he has plugged a leaky radiator with black pepper as well, but I’ll have to get back to you on that one for I cut that tale short. And, as I learned when I first met the man, the second story surely would have led to another.

I am conscious that in the past I have detailed a fair amount of my health status, and even though much of it was duly deleted after a period of time, for those who have endured it and retained it, more of the same may get tedious, as, I assure you, it has been for me. Yes, thumper still kicks a bit, even after shot and thrown into the game bag; but not to mix metaphors, the wing is still clipped from tossing a piece of firewood, though not as bad as once thought, and has in fact shown some improvement via a series of treatments. This last determination was made today by a professional with whom I am extremely impressed.

As he treated and we talked, I learned that he too is a blogger. The subject arose from the type of treatment I received, so unusual that I thought I might mention it here, and said so.

—So, you write about things that happen in a day, like a diary?

—Yes, pretty much. And you?

—I haven’t put anything on my blog for a few months, but I post articles I have published.


That’s my initial reaction, something engrained or in the code, that impulse to peeny wag or know when one has been out-wagged. Except for this guy knows his shit and explains what he knows in terms one can readily understand. Hell yes, I want him published! He’s treating my shoulder. Same goes for my mechanic.

So, the treatment:

As he explained it to me, after the lower priced spread didn’t work to the degree he had hoped, namely a steroid ‘pulsed’ into the skin “like a soaker hose” (see?) via a DC current over a fifteen minute time period, I now am wearing something ‘spendy’ (‘pricey’ in every other part of the U.S.). It is a double pad that has its own little embedded battery that will power a 24-hour dispersal of meds. He spoke of it in hushed tones and related personal experience with the treatment for his own damaged shoulder.

—Oh yeah? What happened to your shoulder?

—I used to be a firefighter and part of a burning building fell on me.

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