06 September 2008

Of Labor

as in, to work hard, not to give birth

As a little girl, I often watched my dad work on cars.  I learned early what the difference was between a clamp and needle-nose pliers, what a socket was, how to turn a wrench and a screwdriver.  That knowledge has served me well over the years, as I can manage small home improvement tasks around the house, and minor car repairs, too.  

I bought a headlight and taillight for my bicycle, because it is getting to be sort of dark in the mornings.  The lights shall become a necessary evil as the year moves on, and, I'd like to continue to ride the bike for as long as I can, until it gets really bloody cold.  The packet claimed that  installation of both items needed no tools.  

They lied.

I was excited about installing them, so I ripped open the package as soon I got home.  I read the instructions, and moved my bike to a spot where it could be worked on.  

Tyvarr, inte, I figured out almost immediately.  (Sorry, not, in Swedish)  I needed assistance to get the batteries into the headlight, and the tail-light, you needed a screwdriver to open it to put the damn things in.  Once I managed that, when I tried to put the tail-light on the bike, I discovered it wouldn't fit with the existing reflector that sits under and behind the seat.  Fair 'nough.  I could handle taking the seat off and removing the reflector.  I'd watched someone else adjust a bike seat once, and they'd accidentally pulled the seat all the way off, so I knew it came out, and once it was, the reflector would be a cinch to take off.

DH has an impressive collection of tools (although I do have my own, too, but they're kept inside, and his are in the garage, where the bike was) and because he is as OCD as I am, they're well organized and properly labeled.  I had no trouble locating a 13 mm ratchet, which I used to loosen the nut holding the seat in place.  

I took the seat off, got off the reflector, and managed to place the tail-light.  It was a pain in the ass, and required standing at odd angles.  By the time I was finished, my legs ached, my hands were dirty, and I felt an amazing sense of accomplishment.  

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