Don't Buy Tools You Will Only Use Once, Or, If It's Worth Doing, It's Worth Doing Yourself
Hudson Taylor, the famous missionary to China, said that. While most of the activities of my life don't fall in to the category "Great Work of God" I find myself often reflecting on how that sentiment plays out in my head.
Very often I'm presented with a problem. Usually it's a mechanical problem at home. I can't imagine how I'm going to find the time and discover the skills to conquer this problem. Sometimes I ruminate on how I'm totally unequipped to handle this problem for weeks and weeks. Then something inside me snaps. I suffer a mental break where the neurons in my brain that have sensibly convinced me that I don't have what it takes to solve this problem have been pulled so tight by my mental struggle that they just succumb to the pressure and let go.
Here's one of those problems.
Our washing machine is leaking. Not a lot, just enough to make a tiny little pool on the floor by the end of each cycle. After investigating, I found out that the rubber gasket that makes the seal between the drum and the door had a hole in it. So, after deciding that I didn't have the time or the skills to repair this large appliance, I ordered the gasket on Amazon and I got to work replacing it.
With the impossible phase over the difficult phase began. This whole procedure would have taken all of 20 minutes if I had decided to purchase the special tool that is used to attach the spring-loaded ring that secures the gasket to the drum. That tool is $88.90.
I saved $88.90 in exchange for about 3 extra hours of work. I like to pretend that I'm worth about $50 an hour, so I got ripped off there a bit.
Oh well, the gasket is replaced, the leak is repaired, the washing machine is running again, and most importantly, my wife is happy. So maybe tonight's endeavor wasn't a great work of God, but I feel pretty good about it.