Wednesday, October 7, 2015

Flat tires and failing light bulbs

It's hump-day, everyone!  And I know that I don't often post midweek, but had a couple of funny things to share that I think you'll enjoy.  Plus I'm kind of marooned where I am, so this is a good use of my time!

In the midst of my computer issues last weekend, I noticed that I had a light flickering in my office.  And it's not just any light.....it's the undermount fluorescent fixture on the underside of the hutch that sits on my credenza in my office.  When I first got that office furniture MANY years ago, I kind of chuckled about that light, but it didn't take long before I was using it every day.

Anyway, it began to flicker, as it last did four or five years ago.  I reached up under the lip, removed the cover and spun the bulb out of its fitting.  Last time this happened, I simply took the bulb to a home improvement store, found a match, and brought it home and put it in.  Easy.

But THIS time?  Not quite.

Went to a different home improvement store for starters.  No luck.  Went to an office supply store, no luck there, either.  During my travels on Monday, I stopped by a different home improvement store, and still no luck.  The electrical manager checked all of his inventory records and said that while I may have bought this bulb from them five or so years ago that they don't carry one that size.

As I returned to Lexington yesterday from a day trip, I stopped by a lighting and electrical supply distributor that also sells to the public.  Three people tried to find a bulb that would fit.  None were successful.  Finally, the warehouse manager asked me what the bulb came out of, and I replied that it was for office furniture.  "Oh!" he exclaimed, and said that it's not uncommon for such things to be proprietary so that the customer has to go back to the manufacturer for replacements.

So I came home, more irritated than ever, and got on my hands and knees to look up at this light fixture.  I found a five place part number for the bulb, Googled it, and lo and behold, the website of the maker of the light fixture was the first item the search returned.  Not the manufacturer of the furniture, but of the light fixture itself.  They stock the item, so I ordered two and gulped when asked to pay almost ten dollars of shipping for two light bulbs.  They should be here soon.

Now, the "where I am" part.  I'm at a tire dealership.  Listen to this:

Yesterday I arrived in Martin, Kentucky for my monthly meeting with some hospital and medical practice personnel.  While waiting for the meeting to begin I heard an announcement on the PA system:  "Will the owner of a grey Honda Pilot please dial zero for important information?"  As it turned out there was a window in my meeting room and I could see my car from there.  My car with a COMPLETELY FLAT RIGHT REAR TIRE.  I dialed zero and asked if the operator wanted to let me know about my flat tire.  She apologized and said that that was the reason for the announcement.

The hospital president overheard me talking with a couple of folks about where in Martin I could get a tire repaired and came out of her office and said, "We'll just have our maintenance guy take care of you."  I wasn't sure what that meant, but in a few minutes a fellow stopped by the meeting room and asked for my keys.  He returned with them about an hour later.  Turns out that he went to my car, jacked it up, removed the wheel, took it to the tire place to have it plugged, replaced it on the car and left things more or less as he found them, albeit with a repaired tire.

Since I had 78,000 on this set of tires, I decided that it wasn't worth further risk, so I'm getting new tires.  Today.  NOW.

But, honestly, isn't that a great story?

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