Everything is fixable.Posted: August 28, 2012
Inventory of my toolbox:
3. Assorted screwdrivers
4. Wire hangers/baling wire
5. Duct tape
As you can probably safely assume from the tools I use and own, I am not a handy guy to have around the house. I don’t really have those skills. My theory has always been, “If I can’t fix it with what I know how to use, it can’t be fixed.”
My wife has a great attitude about many things; so great, in fact, I am jealous of her ability to handle situations that would normally push me pretty far towards snapping. She is frequently saying, “Everything is fixable.” The ability to take a chaotic situation and just put it aside, because in the long run it is not that important, is inspiring to me. Too bad my handyman skills didn’t see things like that.
– From the blog “Rebooting This Crazy Life“
I watched “Love The Beast,” a documentary about (actor) Eric Bana and the love of his first car.
(Bana and friends) went through many restorations in 25 years. The final restoration is to get the car ready for a race on closed streets with mixed terrain. He ends up crashing the car. The rest of the doc is Bana wondering if he should fix the car again.
It makes me think of broken dreams and paths not taken. Abandoning yourself because times get too hard. Something, anything you spend 25 years with is hard to let go. It showed me that everything is fixable. Mechanical, spiritual, physical, or otherwise.
Don’t walk away; don’t give up on something that means so much. If something is broken in your life, fix it. I only wish everything was as easy to fix as a car.
– From the blog “Kate Chaplin“
My first writing-only job was as a marketing writer for a managed care company. Deadlines were tight, sales reps were demanding, and pressure was high to get things right the first time. My boss, though, had a way to glide beatifically above the chaos. Often, when difficulties were encountered and errors were discovered, she would calmly and serenely say:
“Everything is fixable.”
Naturally she was talking about the bid packages we were preparing. But that has stuck with me for the past twelve years.
The other day I was chatting online with a friend. She had come home, tried to open her garage, and discovered the cable that operates her garage door opener laying on the concrete floor. She was a little bit perturbed, as anyone would be. Before I knew it my former boss’s words came out of my mouth:
“Everything is fixable.”
It’s true. Everything is fixable. With that comes a few corollaries, though:
- Everything is fixable, but there may be a cost. We may not like the cost of the fixing, though generally it is an option. Everyone has their price point. My brother-in-law/best friend John’s price point for a repair was half of the cost of replacement. There may be times when fixing, while doable, may not be the best use of one’s time, energy, and resources.
- “Fixing” does not always mean “restoring to original condition.” When I was growing up my dad could fix just about everything. Duct tape was his product of choice. The fixed item would indeed operate again, but it was no longer in pristine showroom condition. On the other hand there are times that fixing something actually improves upon its previous condition. Go figure.
- Fixing is not easy sometimes. You have to want very badly for the item to be fixed and functioning again. All parties must be on board with this, and some of them may just prefer an item that’s new and different. If there isn’t consensus, the fix may not be worth it even though it is doable.
- A fixed item may develop new problems, or the old ones may re-emerge. There are no guarantees. You may be fixing it again, and again.
I’m old-school enough to want to fix things and keep them around. The older I get, the more I discover how atypical that is. No matter, though; I still say everything is fixable.