Thursday, September 26, 2013

Taking Stock

It was just after 4:00 a.m. this morning when I got out of bed. I wanted to get a jump on the day. The first matter on the agenda (after pointedly having wound all four mechanical clocks in the house) was to drive my new car to Stittsville. There I would put it through the touch-less car wash for which I have a season’s pass entitling me to 90 days of washes, once a day. Of equal if not more importance than the exterior maintenance of the vehicle was the driving of the machine to “teach”it my personal driving habits. Two days ago the mechanic completely erased the car’s computer transmission memory. While he didn’t say the tactic was hocus-pocus, neither was he adamant that it would correct the winding-down sound which to date has annoyingly punctuated each gear shift. After listening intently to the sound of the engine during my early morning jaunt today, it is fair to say that although the “condition” has not entirely evaporated, it is certainly within the realm of acceptable tolerance (which admittedly has been lately heightened by my constant preoccupation). I am additionally motivated in this result because there are so many other features of this particular automobile which I relish. Having bought another new car exactly like it no less than ten months ago, I can say with some authority that that this number is a fine specimen of the brand. Not surprisingly no two vehicles perform identically, and I know from experience that when one finally gets a good one, it is wise to attach to it. My recent obsession with this car is due in no small measure to having suffered the cost of trading the first new one three months ago because of recurring transmission problems, only to discover that the replacement vehicle was plagued by yet another distortion. It appears that we are now are the end of that line of trouble. Like any new love affair, new cars come with high expectations, and one forgets that they, like lovers, ultimately have their problems. One must adapt to the idiosyncrasies of the candidate.

Sunday, September 8, 2013

Nobody's Listening and Nobody Cares

As predisposed as each of us may unsurprisingly be to view our own personal dilemmas in life as worthy of notice by others, the unvarnished truth is that when it comes to public empathy, nobody’s listening and nobody cares. While this may be taken as an unfeeling comment upon the popularly retailed big-heartedness of society, it is more likely than not a cold reality.  To think otherwise is an illusion. Nonetheless I expect your instinctive reaction upon hearing such blunt remark is to come streaming to the campaign for all that is philanthropic in mankind.  You may however be bound to leave such high-minded benevolence at the door of paid social workers rather than upon the pouting lips of well-wishers.  How often have you passed with averted eyes the overwrought features of a co-worker?  When did you take seriously the tormented outburst of a friend that he cannot go on any longer? When last did you contemplate what it means that charity begins at home?  And even if you did for a moment flirt with these perplexities, what in the end were you truly going to do?  Isn’t it all so much easier to let such puzzlements trickle down the street like so much slop in the gutter?