This fact trickled out on the previous site, but is not well known. I didn’t drive until my thirties. It’s true. Lazy, scared of driving, focused on other things. Who knows? As my wedding grew closer I thought it’s embarrassing to be married and expected to be the patriarch of a family, without a license. I finally obtained one mere weeks beforehand. We had our first car less than a year later, and are now on our second one. As the experience and driving a vehicle came to me later in life, all related topics and lessons also came to me later. I wish I was driving in my 20’s just for the freedom. To have means to go more places. Of course, I was terrible with money back then and probably would have created some awful situation for myself at that time. Failing some sort of maintenance, payment, getting a ticket. If there was a way to screw it up back then, I would have found it.
Getting my license at an older age led to me looking for ways to keep costs down. The gas tank is filled up on the cheaper Sundays and at the place where we have the discount card. Free air machines, I’ll keep my quarter – thank you. On the previous vehicle this also led me to use YouTube for basic car repair. I can tighten up a wiper. Headlights are easily accessible. All of the lights, really. There’s an Auto Zone close enough to the house I wouldn’t even need to grab my coat before heading out. So when one headlight went out on the current vehicle, I felt confident. I’ll buy a new bulb for a couple bucks, replace it in five minutes, and save between $50-$75 if nearby garage estimates are to be believed.
Hey, did you know every car is different? For example, just because one vehicle has easily accessible lighting does not mean every car does. I did not expect to be under a car unscrewing supports so I can reach up inside the wheel well to change the headlight from below. Nor did I expect both headlights to cut out as I’m driving home with one bulb. Back, return, the two bulb pack please. Now my night got twice as long.
Thanks to some how to YouTube videos, I replaced both. A little less than an hour for a novice to do both sides. There is nothing in my comic reading life that says I know cars. Not a damn thing. But, it’s my car. It’s my family. I’m extending it to it’s my house. However, I have also always told myself I’m smart enough to figure out anything. If the dumbest person I know can do X then so can I. Whether that’s anything from car repair to writing code to being a good father. If that person can do it, then I damn sure can.
As it turns out, it felt good. Stressful in the moment. I messed up, didn’t do something the right way, added more time, dropped stuff. In the end though, I turned on those lights and knew I had myself to thank. Plus I saved money. I felt emboldened. There’s a big crack in the front bumper from who knows what when the car was parked one day. I already priced a replacement online and I think I could get under there to fix it. If I felt confident enough to get them on tightly using only my strength, I would put winter tires on. Let me check out that weak spot in the floor boards while I’m at it. Who wants to buy me stuff from Sears?! Or, a similar and still in business option?
To watch terrible garage lighting video of my accomplishment, check the embed clips below.