a division of labour

I try not to have any gaping holes in my How to Life database, but there is one area in which I am particularly weak: car stuff.

I don’t know anything about the inner workings of cars. I can make car go, I can get car juice, I know how to check fluids and what to do if they’re low. Beyond that is a vast foggy grey area of I dunno, and although I am somewhat ashamed to admit it, I don’t really WANT to know. I’m not a car person. I’m okay with that. I cannot be everywhere at once, people. I’m in dire need of assistance. (rise up!)

The Minibator was long overdue for service, and Ed decided some months ago that as the car is mine, I am responsible for maintenance and upkeep. This is fair. I get it. On the other hand, this toads the wet sprocket and I am petulantly stomping my foot (which hurts because my bones are all fucked down there): I don’t WANT to be responsible for my car. I’m dumb at car. They’re going to charge me for blinker fluid and a replacement 710 cover and an emergency flux capacitor dilation.

I KNOW that I should woman the fuck up and learn about this stuff so I’m not ignorant about the health and well-being of my car. It’s pathetic and downright insulting to play into the “stupid woman doesn’t know cars” stereotype and want someone else to deal with it on my behalf: willful ignorance is hideous on everyone, no matter the topic. I am not doing myself any favours by not knowing the difference between the air filter and damper valves. Suck it up, buttercup, and earn that “self-rescuing princess” shirt.

Except .. at what age are you finally allowed to say “you know what? I don’t have enough spoons to deal with this”? When can you acknowledge your privilege and let someone else deal with it for you? I know this isn’t an option everyone has, but I do have it – is it so bad to use it?

My counterargument is thus: while I am not a car person, Ed very much is. I recognize that the Mini is mine and I should concern myself with the upkeep, but I also know that there are a thousand other things that I deal with so Ed doesn’t have to: managing the household budget, ensuring all debts are paid (Lannister style), arranging all travel (even for trips I’m not going on), deciding our weekly menu, most of the cooking, laundry, gift-giving, our social calendar, and more. Given all that I manage in our lives on a daily basis, I would like to be able to hand all vehicle maintenance off to Ed and let HIM deal with it. He speaks their language. He has a way better idea of what is an actual concern vs what just sounds super alarming to someone who doesn’t know any better, and if a particular suggested service is really an upsell tactic vs a needed procedure to keep me from careening into fluffy baby ducks if I corner too fast.

The raging feminist in me wants to take my car by the horns (cars have horns, right?) and own the fuck out of it, but the realist in me knows that I have no time for or interest in car .. stuff. In exchange for making our lives run smoothly and be captured for data mining via the cloud-enabled products sprinkled throughout our house, I ask that he be in charge of cat poop and car poop. This seems fair to me, and outside my own qualms about the “you go girl” quotient of my request, I’d be a lot happier about the overall idea of car knowing I was just a particularly adorable onlooker (and as an added bonus, it won’t take 6 months of bugging me to get the oil change scheduled already).

Rising up is good. Rising up and delegating to someone else has to at least count for partial credit, right?

In other news, five years ago today I was in the hospital discovering that my heart was a lazy fucking slacker only working at 20% capacity. I’m much better now, I think! What do get your heart for a 5-year anniversary of still working? Is it chocolate? Please say it’s chocolate.

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$9.00 per day!

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