Tuesday, May 26, 2009

The Blowback of Impatience

I am an impatient person. When facing a problem, the use of brute force is always the first, usually my preferred, and sometimes the only solution that comes to mind. Wires tangled together? Yank on one until it's freed. Luggage won't close? Jump on it. Can't get a package open? Tear it with your teeth if necessary.

Unfortunately, brute force is rarely the most effective solution (though the most satisfying). More often than not, it causes more trouble that it's worth.

A few weeks ago, I was attempting to secure a bike rack on my car. I had trouble wriggling one of the hooks into the crevice between the trunk of my car and my rear brake light. A person with disciplined mind would have simply opened the trunk, arranged the hook properly, and then closed the trunk to secure the hook. I, on the other hand, tried to mash the hook in with my fingers. When that didn't work, I hit it with the palm of my hand. The hook did not move, and I hurt my hand. Frustrated with myself and the pain in my hand, I then kicked the hook with the bottom of my foot with full force.

I cracked my rear brake light casing. I also smashed the light bulb. The hook, of course, still didn't move.


  1. I don't know if I posted this story before, but it reminds me of the time that I closed the hatch of my '89 Acura Integra on both hands. In my haste, I had forgotten to let go of the hatch before shutting it closed. I stood there in shock, realizing that I could not open the hatch without my keys which were conveniently in my backpocket. I had no choice but to yank one of my hands out of the closed hatch, grab my keys, and open it to release the other hand. I had no finger sensation for a long time.

  2. Both hands? Ouch, ouch ouch!