A few days ago I was driving along and suddenly a dashboard warning light came on. It had a bright orange exclamation mark in it, so I figured it was pretty serious.
I pulled over and did what any sensible person would do: I called St. Bob. This, by the way, is much quicker and easier than opening the driver’s manual in the glove box, which is the size of a Bible.
St. Bob was not nearly as frantic as I was, however, and said he’d take a look at it that evening after he got home from work. First, he sat down in the driver’s seat and turned the car on.
There it was, the bright orange symbol of death. Or something similar to death. He looked up at me and said, “Now, what does that look like to you?”
Well, I happen to have been raised by a psychologist, and I have no problem with Rorschach-type tests like these, so I told him exactly what it looks like: The udder of a cow with an exclamation mark inside, possibly meaning “out of milk.”
“It’s a low tire,” he said. (Who decided on this graphic?) “One of your tires must be low on air.”
Seriously? Couldn't they just use a sign like this?
I walked around the car. The tires looked fine. Nevertheless, Bob took it to the tire shop the next day. The mechanics tested all four tires. All were fine (Aha—see? I did something right, coming to the same conclusion after a mere glance.)
“Let’s check the spare,” the mechanic said. ARE YOU KIDDING ME? And, sure enough, there is some sensor gizmo in the trunk that keeps tabs on the pressure in the spare tire, and then alerts me with a giant exclamation mark, about this impending catastrophe. My spare was low. Well, thank goodness they found the source of the crisis and averted a world overthrow.
How many nights have you lain in bed, wide awake, worrying about the air in your spare tire? I know I will certainly sleep better after this ordeal. And, by the way, next time a warning light comes on in my dashboard, I shall look askance at it and wonder just how serious this is. After all, this is how that whole “boy who cried wolf” thing started.
But let’s talk about a real emergency: Your Christmas list. You can find something for everyone right here—my books! All available in hard copies, some on Kindle as well. Shop to your heart’s content!