Sunday, October 18, 2009

I am Captain Patience - 10-19-09

My kids call me Captain Patience. I believed this sarcastic nom de guerre of my perceived lack of tolerance was highly exaggerated. It is their contention that during their formative years, I was impatient with them while helping with their homework and other fatherly teachings. They contend that when I had determined that they should have mastered a lesson or task that instead of explaining in more detail that I would elevate the volume, intonation, and inflection of my voice. Josh gives an example of this as:

“what is 2 times 5?”
“2 times 5!!”
“‘WHAT THE HELL IS 2 TIMES 5!!!!”
“ WHAT IS #@*^*$@! 2 TIMES *!^*#$@ 5!!!!!!”

While my teaching methods may be controversial, all three of my kids excelled in school. But they did not often ask me to help with their homework.
Recently, an event happened that made me grateful that none of them were present to witness. It also caused me to consider that their designation of me as Captain Patience may be somewhat deserved.

There was a cassette tape stuck in the player in my SUV. It had been there for a number of years, as I had several years ago abandoned use of the cassette in favor of the CD and later the IPOD. The tape was probably melted into the deck from nine years of South Carolina heat and humidity. It would not eject and I totally forgot it was in there. Until..................

I went to crank the SUV one morning and the battery was dead. I jump-started it, and while driving around to charge the battery I noticed that the deck was attempting to eject the tape. The little motor was running continuously. Somehow, in the middle of the night, the deck had unilaterally decided to expel the tape. As the tape had become one with the deck, this attempt was unsuccessful but the deck refused to admit defeat and went into lock-down mode, thereby depleting my battery. This simply was unacceptable. Using a pair of needle nose pliers, I attempted to remove the tape from the player. This was no easy task as the tape had become one with the deck. I had to totally destroy the tape and remove it in pieces. To my chagrin, removal of the tape did not cause the mechanism to stop mechanizing.

This is the point at which my alter-ego, Captain Patience, took over. Using the same needle-nose pliers and large screwdriver, I destroyed the cassette deck. Did I mention it was a Bose system? I ripped out the circuit board and every moving part I could find. I totally gutted the entire system. Much of this handiwork was done at 60 miles per hour. Skooter moved to the back seat as he did not want to get hit by any schrapnel. I lost my radio presets, the digital display, and the clock, but to my amazement the radio continued to play and the ejection motor continued to function. (see clip below) It was possessed, but so was I.
video
By probing blindly and violently with the screwdriver, I finally killed it but I now have a gaping hole in my dashboard and I am limited to the radio station that it was set to. I have evidently lost the ability to tune. But it was totally worth it.

A friend, who is electronics savvy, later offered, “you should have just pulled and reinserted the fuse and it would have stopped and probably reset and not restarted.” He should not have said that to a superhero armed with a screwdriver and a pair of needle-nose.

14 comments:

Dr. David W. Powers said...

That is so funny! I would have loved being able to sit by and watch that, and I'm sure a youtube video of it would get a million hits. What happens when pliers attack...

Shyam said...

:D

Forgetfulone said...

Way to go Captain Patience! Sounds a little like me.

Starr Kelso said...

Whale: Scooter...one sharp co-pilot!

Anonymous said...

Haha! Carson comes by it honestly and I certainly have inherited your ability in helping with homework. Mine is more like

'What sound does this letter make?
No, what sooound does this letter make? The sound, of the letter, what is it? Okay, forget it, we'll try again in the morning.'
Love ya Carly

Dawn said...

Crack me up! Your post hit home, because I am not the most patient mother in the world.

Anna said...

This shouldn't be funny, but it is.

orionsbow said...

Are you aware, my post electronic apocalypse creating friend, that most casette decks, like all DVD players, have a very small hole below the opening where you can insert a straightened out paper clip to trip the release spring that will, usually, smartly eject any stuck tape? Yeah, they do. Too bad. But hey, that was a damned fine mess you made! I love to see a simple victory over possessed electronics through use of standard hand tools. My favorite way!

Calico Crazy said...

If I had even a penny for every time I've destroyed a simple piece of machinery in an attempt to make it work, well let's just say I wouldn't be looking for a job right now.

Calico Contemplations

linda may said...

I am laughing s hard at this Rick. love it, Captain patience.

Anonymous said...

Holy Cow.....This is a riot!!!! You neglected to mention the body language that often accompanied Captain Patience as he would attempt to "help" someone. Quite a floor show.

By the way....the eyeball pic, well, it's just creepy. eeeeeuuuuuwww !!!clo

myrtle beached whale said...

The photo was actually posted for Halloween but I like it so much I think it will remain.

Lori Poyer said...

Oh, this is funny!!!! I wish I had been able to be a fly on the ceiling at this one!!

myrtle beached whale said...

I wish it was fiction or at least an exaggeration. It is neither.