vast legions of loyal disinterested readers know I’ve got an antique tractor (or two). They also know I am trying to use them as if they weren’t museum pieces but rather working machinery. They also know (or have inferred) that I am apparently a shitty mechanic (or at least my tractor thinks so). They also know that I have “rebuild an engine” on my bucket list. I phrased it as follows (link):
If you are a man you should rebuild an engine at least once before you die.
The tractor kindly volunteered for the procedure by dying. No problem right? Wrong. It turned into a mess. After several (dozen) missteps the “tractor issue” boiled down to one of two possibilities:
“Insanity is doing the same thing over and over again but expecting different results.” A line in Sudden Death (1983) by American writer Rita Mae Brown (possibly paraphrased from a Narcotics Anonymous text).
“Never give in–never, never, never, never, in nothing great or small, large or petty, never give in except to convictions of honour and good sense. Never yield to force; never yield to the apparently overwhelming might of the enemy.” Winston Churchill, 1941
I have trouble with this dichotomy. I’d like to go with Churchill’s wisdom because it’s simple and direct. Also Churchill was a bad ass son of a bitch who kept his nation together against the Nazis. Meanwhile I’ve never read anything by Rita Mae Brown. When in doubt bet with the guy stood firm against what must have seemed like the implosion of all of Western Civilization.
Then again I’m an Adaptive Curmudgeon and the Nazis had nothing to do with my dead tractor. All around me modern Americans seem bent on living like indolent morons; including making bad life decisions over and over. Are they brave in their persistence? Or are they monkeys with cell phones who aren’t learning to avoid bad things? If the tractor was a mess at some point does going back out to the garage with a wrench over and over become stupid? Nobody wants to be While E. Coyote placing another on-line order to ACME?
Well, with my last post, I’ve let the cat out of the bag. The tractor did have an end game. (Or at least an interruption in the onslaught of suck.) By what should have been a simple fix turned into a saga of misery, failure, false hope, and mechanical self immolation. It was a Greek tragedy with wrenches. It behooves me to share my experiences so you can laugh your ass off.
First I’m linking to past posts. I had to look at them (while drinking) to re-experience the scope of screw up that I’ve just waded through.
Sherlock Holmes And The Ailing Tractor: Part I
Sherlock Holmes And The Ailing Tractor: Part II
Sherlock Holmes And The Ailing Tractor: Part III
Sherlock Holmes And The Ailing Tractor: Part IV
Sherlock Holmes And The Ailing Tractor: Part V (apparently at this point I gave up on Sherlock Holmes and became Urkel)
Ailing Tractor: Part VI
Ailing Tractor: Part VII
Ailing Tractor: Part VIII
Now I’ll draw a deep breath and write out the last part. …Nah…I’ll leave that another few days. It’s sunny out and I’ve got free wood to split. Christmas is a time of forgiveness. Gimme’ a day or two.
I have rebuilt many car engines but I drew the line at something you had to split in half to rebuild.
I think I’ve been in this situation myself, at least that’s what my doctors say. Please excuse the crayon, they won’t let me have sharp things.
Bated breath, over here…
Unfortunately all hell broke loose on the non-tractor front. Sorry for the inadvertent teaser.
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