July 1, 2009

My grandfather was a meticulous man when it came to his possessions, and the care he took paid off in many ways.

When he and my grandmother gave up living on their own, he gave his 1938 Chevy coupe to one of my brothers.

It was 1966, and he told me that three of its four tires had been purchased new when he bought the car in 1941. 

Imagine a pair of tires today lasting for 25 years.

Of course, if I followed his example, they might. He never pulled out of his garage without checking the air pressure. If it was off by a pound, he pulled out his hand pump and topped it off. I am also certain he never accelerated quickly, nor did he need to hit the brakes hard.

Rubber was left where needed, on the tire, not on the pavement.

My grandfather took a slower and steadier pace through traffic and life than I have managed. I don’t know if it was a better life or if he enjoyed life more.

I do know he left a smaller consumption footprint behind. In this day of concern over dwindling natural resources and global warming, it is an example worth following.

Perhaps we all need to “take more care” and check our tires a bit more often.

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