Imagine this: I have been captivated by the zoo-like enclosure of my café job for the entire sunny duration of a 10-hour day. I finally clock off as the sunsets baby, on the avenue, and I start my car, and put on my favorite playlist as I venture homeward bound on a Saturday night that will ultimately be spent ‘in’. Essentially, this solo, 20 minute roadtrip is the most relaxing and fun part of my raging Saturday night, so I go all out. Mid-rap to Chris Brown’s ‘Look at me now’, I am broken from my ultimate gangsta experience, to a weird, fiery blink on my car dashboard. A quick review of the words “OVERHEATED ENGINE’ and confirmation by the temperature gauge which is also alight in the red zone, verifies that yep, everyone WILL be ‘looking at me now’ when the car blows up. Now I am no pessimist, but when it comes to cars, I definitely switch to an automated worst-case scenario builder. Thoughts like “the car is going to blow up, I’m going to have to go all commando and fly out the door in t-0.005 seconds, and the $20 cash in my wallet is going to burn along with my wardrobe which lives vicariously in my backseat. My life is basically over, and now I’m going to have to get Dad to take me to Uni, and pick me up from my friend’s house, even worse I might NEED TO START CATCHING PUBLIC TRANSPORT. This is it. This is the end.” Basically, I’m a huge dramatist, and in an effort to keep calm for the sake, of well, my sanity in this situation, I simply pulled over when it was safe to do so – profound right? With a surprising sense of ‘I got this’, I called the only person who could actually get me through this ordeal of potential explosive action: Papa Bear. Apparantly it was a pretty easy mechanical case to deal with, all I had to do was pop open the Pandora box-esque bonnet, and fill up the water container thing so that the engine could cool down with some delicious H2O. Simple. Bottom line my car is fine, but my dad wasn’t so fine about me not knowing how dehydrated my land vessel was. And in the reminiscence of my own in-built worst-case scenarios: which featured me with a Myki card in hand, aboard the Frankston line, neither was I. Me: How was I meant to know Dad? Shouldn’t it tell me when it’s thirsty? Dad: Umm, no. You are meant to check these things. When you wash your car once a week (dad pls), you should do a routine check of the oil (lol), the engine fluid (even more lol), and the water levels. Me: Do I look like a mechanic? I mean ok, maybe with overalls, but seriously, I don’t even know what have those things are! Dad: Well, you are going to learn girly. Because if you stuff up this car, guaranteed I won’t be helping you pay for it to be fixed. Me: *gulp*.
End of the story, I am now an Apprentice Mechanic.
Totally kidding, but I am definitely going to learn car basics, and I guess I’m pretty fortunate that I have someone willing to teach me. Following the onset of my premature career in Automotive repairs, I got to thinking about how much I don’t know, such as
- How to make the perfect sponge cake,
- How to surf,
- How to braid hair,
- How to drive a manual car,
- The rules of AFL.
And how knowledgeable the people around me are, and how willing they would be, to share their expertise in anything I’d be interested in learning about. So here’s a thought:
- Find something you know nothing about,
- Recognize that your Grandpa/Aunty/Second-cousin-twice-removed/sibling knows EVERYTHING there is to know about it, and,
- Let them share their wisdom with you. Share in the knowledge, bond over it, get a soy chai as you chat about it, and get bloody learning about something different.
Personally, I am up to my ears learning about the same consumer behaviors, social media tips and writing styles – I want to learn about tides, Buddhism and rugby league!
What you know is only a fraction of what you don’t know. Own it, and embrace being a learner.