Sunday, April 17, 2022

Spare change

 I have so much that I'm behind in writing about, but also so much to do that I'm finding it difficult to find the time I would like to write here. Other muses are calling, but I don't want this one to lose its importance.

For now I'll share a brief story that I wrote up for the Hancock Hummer (the family newsletter that I do, and which has for years and years been published the first weekend in April and the first weekend in October, but which I have put aside until now, and everyone has been so wonderfully patient; it's like the family elders all took an oath not to harass me about it (in the past I've gotten emails the first Sunday of the month if I hadn't sent it out the Saturday)). Perhaps they did. One of my mom's cousins has been organizing monthly cousin meetings via Zoom. 

Anyway...this is what I wrote in about Andrew:

Andrew continues to teach at Georgia State University (in Atlanta). He taught both of his classes in-person this semester, which has been an adjustment after teaching from home for more than a year. Before the pandemic he would park at the station and ride the metro downtown but because of the pandemic he’s been driving all the way downtown when he needs to go to campus. He teaches an evening class on Thursday, so doesn’t get home until rather late. This week, however, he was particularly late getting home because he got a flat tire!

He limped his way to a gas station by the Martin Luther King Jr. National Historical Park (about five minutes away from the parking garage near his office building) and tried to fill up his tire, to no avail. He’d run over a screw somewhere. So he opened his trunk and pulled out the spare tire so he could switch it out (something he’d never done before). 

A homeless man—gnawing on a bucket of fried chicken—stopped by to chat, ridiculed Andrew for not knowing how to fix his car, revealed that he was a veteran and could change that tire in no time, and then he did! Andrew paid him $30 (nearly all the money he had in his wallet) and made it home just before midnight. 

Then he spent his Friday morning getting his tire repaired for real (can't run around on a spare tire forever). He was so lucky to have run into a kind, helpful the middle of downtown very late at night!


  1. IMO, he wasn't all that kind if he ridiculed Andrew, but I'm glad he was nice enough to put aside his chicken and help.

  2. I agree with Susanne on the ridiculing point. Though at least they offered to help! When I had a flat a few years ago some woman walking by ridiculed me for not knowing how to change the flat and then just went on her way. Not that I've never learned - I've been taught how a couple times, but always in groups with no hands on experience. And then never having to use the knowledge it becomes something I don't retain. The car I had a flat in, the makers seemed to realize someone may be in such a situation and had put instructions for changing the tire in the spare tire storage, which I was reading when the woman decided the best way to help was belittling me.