Everyone needs a fleet of flying monkeys to rip the stuffing out of the annoying people in their lives
— Laura

I have an intense fear of inflating tires. I wrote before that I take my car to a full-service garage for all air checks and air fills. I don’t know the fancy Latin crazy science name for this fear and I’m not going to look it up. I just call it Shrapnelandtirelodgedinmyfacephobia. Anyway, I have a nice garden cart I got right after I bought this place that I used all spring for working in my garden and planting shit in my yard. I have not used it lately because it got hotter than hell and I basically said “Fuck it, yard, you’re on your own” for the last few months. But we had a cool spell come through last week and I decided I’d pull some weeds and prune some palm fronds and when I went to go get my cart to haul the shit away I was horrified to see that both tires on my cart were flat! First thing I thought was “How am I loading this big ass cart in my car to take it to the garage without looking like a complete fool?” Then I thought, “Since when did I care if I looked like a complete fool?” and I started to put my cart in my car. It didn’t fit. Shit. Then I thought ”I’ll take the tires off this bitch and just take them in!”  So I set out hunting tools to do that when I spotted something in the corner of my garage. When I got closer I saw it was an air compressor. See, the previous owners left all kinds of shit I never even got around to discovering. Anyhow, I eyed it for a few minutes and then went about looking for garden cart tire removal tools. I couldn’t find any. My eyes went back to the air compressor. “Hmm, if these little tires exploded they probably wouldn’t kill me,” I thought. ”But they will render me unconscious,” my crazy shrapnelandtirelodgedinmyfacephobia whispered. Then I envisioned the aftermath, me all laid out on the garage floor and my neighbors being all:

To hell with it. I’m a grown-ass woman. I can fill a garden cart’s tires! I’m going for it. I plugged the compressor into the wall and it made that weird humming air compressor sound. Then I took the cap off of the stem thingies, put on a pair of welder’s gloves I found in the other corner of garage to save my hands from the explosion, placed the compressor thingie on the stem thingy, turned my head, closed my eyes, prayed to Baby Jesus and pressed the lever thingie. It filled! I repeated the same on the other tire, prayer and all, and VOILÀ!

Like a motherfuckin’ pro, y’all!

Oh, but I’m still taking my car in for tire pressure checks and inflation. Those babies can kill you. Baby steps.


30 Responses to You have nothing to fear but fear itself, and steel-belted radial shrapnel.

  1. patti says:

    I wish I could find a random air compressor magically in my garage – I’d totally go buy a nail gun.

    • Laura says:

      I think there’s a nail gun too. They left everything, and I mean EVERYTHING. Remember I had that estate sale? It was just the house stuff.

  2. Sean says:

    Not an unreasonable fear.

  3. Jess says:

    When I was a kid, I’d never put air in a tire, but if my brothers could, then I could, too.

    I think the service station attendant knew what would happen. Why? because he laughed his ass off, when I blew the tire up and it knocked me backward. It took a few seconds for me to realize what happened and my ears rang for two days.

  4. Jena says:

    Weird, I have the same phobia. You are braver than I am. But then everyone is.

  5. Suzanne says:

    When OSHA sees fit to write safety regulations about a topic, you best believe that someone/a small army of people died in the line of duty. (See: https://www.osha.gov/pls/oshaweb/owadisp.show_document?p_table=STANDARDS&p_id=9825)

    (Oh, it is tire-inflating day in the autoshop? I will be in my office a half-mile from here. See ya’)

  6. Sidney says:

    That is one of my favorite scenes from Friday!

  7. Samantha says:

    I love that garden cart. I mean, with inflated tires. lol

  8. bored says:

    The important thing to know here is did you get all the weeding done?

  9. Jennifer says:

    LOL! I make my hubby blow up the tires! I think I have that phobia too!

  10. Nicole says:

    Hey, baby steps are good enough. No need to go crazy overboard. :)

  11. SB Smith says:

    This is a healthy fear. I know of an employee (in his 20′s and Texting at the time incident happened !) in a privately owned auto shop that also sold and mounted tires. He was Killed inflating a tire to “pop” it onto the rim. It was a large truck tire but that’s irrelevant. I don’t have to do it very often but I don’t like just airing up my own tires a few lbs. if one or two of them are low.
    J. told me on the road one time not to be driving alongside the 18 wheelers, but to pass or get further behind them…”You don’t want to be anywhere near them if one of their tires Blows.”
    True Dat !

  12. SB Smith says:

    Oh yeah…A couple of years ago I caught J. trying to put 80 PSI into one of his F250 truck tires !….ASShole BROKE my portable little compressor (that I keep in my car) in the process !
    I finally went and looked at the label inside his driver door and the MOUNTING pressure was only 60 PSI !
    He finally admitted 80 was wrong.
    I just went to Lowe’s and bought myself a new one. It stays LOCKED in my car.
    So….NO – It isn’t always a good idea to have “the man” do the tire shit.
    Thank You, I will do My Own…..or take my car somewhere to have it done.


  13. Liz says:

    I have a fear of putting gas in my car. I make my Hubby do it for me. Wait, that’s not fear. . . it’s lazy. Nevermind.

  14. Alison says:

    Great, now I’ll probably think of you every time I inflate my tires. Ha! Who am I kidding? I never check my tire pressure, pfffft.

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