The wheel nuts came off. So did the flat tire. And then, of course, the spare tire went on and so did the wheel nuts again. Easy.
My neighbour did it.
He read in my blog how the matter was posing a challenge for me and offered ever-so-graciously to help, “Ya stupid git! How come you can’t take a tire off when you can build a house? Ya daft?
“Well, it seems a bit foolish but, like, I snapped my ratchet extension in the process and that kinda suggests the nuts have been put on too tight, don’t you think?”
“No such thing. Never met a nut I couldn’t loosen. Well, there’s you, I suppose. Come on, let’s do it.”
I grabbed my ratchet and a few sockets, some WD40 and the little car jack. “I’m ready!”
“What the hell are those things!? Toys? Zat a 3/8″ drive? Ya need 1/2″ drive and a longer handle, fer God’s sake, man! No wonder you didn’t get it. This is a real vehicle, we are talkin’. Not some damn bicycle repair!?”
He goes into his shop, gets a ratchet that could double as a baseball bat and one socket, a 3/4.
“Uhn, J, I don’t think it”s a 3/4″ nut. I worked a 5/8″ socket on the wheel nuts and it gripped up pretty tight. That was the socket that snapped my extension. It was definitely on!”
“Nope. It’s 3/4. I saw it once as you drove by. Last year. Over in Campbell River. It’s 3/4. I have no idea how in hell you got a 5/8″ on”.
And so, with me shakin’ my head and him as confident as ever, we went over to the other island.
J popped the 3/4 socket on, attached the official ratchet of the NBA and, with a deft hand, undid all the nuts as if they were bedded in butter. It was embarrassing.
“I have to tell em'”
“Blog readers. They need to know. And I gotta tell ’em. Damn. This will be embarrasing.”
“Don’t tell ’em. This can be on a need-to-know basis. I won’t tell. Well, I probably won’t tell them but only ’cause I don’t have a blog. I am afraid I can’t be trusted beyond that. I mean, c’mon……..!”
“Never mind. I’ll tell ém. Sheesh. Man can’t loosen his own nuts. Sounds bad. Real bad. Still, it’s in keeping with the basic theme, ya know? Screwing up twice before getting it done right. Life off the grid without money, skill or fully functioning brain? Maybe I can work this…..?”
“Dave, little girls can change flat tires. You can’t make this work in any way except to look like an imbecile. Honest. I read the blog now and then and, if I were you, I’d just leave this episode of incompetence off the record. Really. Your reputation is in enough trouble. Ya don’t need this. Mind you, I will have to tell all my friends so it will get out one way or the other”.
“One way or the other?! There is only one way and that is you!”
“Yeah. Probably. Well, they say confession is good for the soul. Hell on one’s image, tho. But you go for it. ‘Cause if you don’t, I may have to start a blog”.