Monday, October 23, 2006


Signs Are Only For the Literate

When I was a kid, my dad told me the following story about the machine shop at the engineering firm where he worked. They moved some of their large custom equipment around with a forklift, using a special adapter that dad designed. It worked as intended, until one day one of the knuckledraggers hooked a cable to it sideways to try to move some heavy object sitting near the forklift (or something like that--I forget the details.) The adapter snapped clean in half, but since that was not the way it was meant to be used, the company didn't spend money redesigning it. They built another one exactly the same, except that dad had a sign put on it saying "under no circumstances side-load this tool". But, he said with a rueful smile, that was only for people who can read.

I just spent ten minutes setting my tire pressures properly, ironically because some other knuckledraggers (it's a term of endearment, I promise!) CAN read. Everytime I take my car for an oil change, they read the plate inside the door and set the tire pressures to what it says. The only problem is that I replaced the stock tires awhile ago with ones that happen to take much higher pressures. It says so right on the tire--max press 51 psi. But like clockwork, it always comes back from the dealer at 36fr/34rr, and then I have to pump them up to 48fr/46rr. I know they think they're doing me a free service, but I guess I'm going to have to start specifically asking them not to. Sigh.

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