I recently had a big problem with my car. It had a huge oil leak coming from the oil pan. It was not always that way. I made it that way. Thankfully it is now fixed. But this is the end of a lesson I had to learn regarding having a little knowledge but not being an expert. And this is a lesson for songwriters as well. Although this is about my car the lesson can be applied to many areas of life. This includes songwriting. Here is my story and how I learned that by doing everything my self can become a songwriters worst nightmare.
It Starts Out Small
The adventure begins several months ago when I noticed a small drop of oil in the driveway. Looking back now it was really tiny drop compare to what was about to come.
At the prompting of my wife I took the car to a mechanic to have it fixed. I took it in and he replaced the gasket. You would think that this was the end of the story. However a few weeks later there was another tiny drop of oil in the driveway. Okay so I called the mechanic back, he never returned my calls. Although he had a shop, he was never there because he was primarily a mobile mechanic. After several attempt to reconnect with the guy. I figured he didn’t want my business. So I accommodated his desire and vowed not to use him or recommend his services.
Taking Matters Into My Own Hands
I still had the issue with the oil leak so I decided to take a look for myself. So I crawled under the car and noticed that several of the bolts had loosened, So I went to the tool box and tightened the the bolts. This worked for a short while but the leak came back. So I went under the car to take a look and noticed the bolts had loosened again. Plus it look like the gasket had started to protrude out. After a brief Google search I realized that I had over tighten the bolts. Which lead me to my next adventure.
The DIY Dilemma
Arm with my little knowledge of auto mechanics and being cheap at the same time I decided I would go ahead a try it myself. So I purchase the gasket and proceeded to replace the gasket. I was thinking to myself – I can do this! Well, I did replace the gasket and by the way spilled a glob of oil in the driveway as well.
I Really Messed Up
Then after a few weeks the pesky leak returned. The bolts had loosened again. So I did as I previous did and proceeded to tighten the bolt. But this time something awful happened. I snapped the head off of one of the bolts. Yikes! And along with this event the drip of oil got a tiny bit larger.
YouTube Got Me Into More Trouble
So after a brief YouTube and Google search I found information on how to extract a broken bolt. Thought to myself – I can do this. And with a little knowledge and being cheap at the same time, I proceeded to fix the problem. Well, things didn’t go so well. I removed the oil pan again and with the bolt extraction tool I tried to drill out the bolt. Now for those of you who have ever extracted a bolt the key is to drill a hole in the exact middle of the bolt. And I mean the EXACT middle of the bolt. Unfortunately, I did not get the hole in the middle. A bit embarrassed with myself along with a little pride. I put the oil pan back and “gooped” up the gasket to see if I could get rid of the leak.
Digging a Deeper Hole
Well after a couple of hours the leak was back and the drip of oil was slightly larger than before. So I drove the car for a little while longer making sure I kept a close eye on the oil level. I knew eventually that I would have to bite the bullet and hire someone to fix it.
Finding the Right Solution
Knowing of my problem a friend recommended a shop that they had used and were very satisfied with the work they did. On their recommendation I took the car to get the oil leak fixed.
Of course, I had to confess my mess to the guy. He only smiled. And the mechanic fixed the leak.
Lessons Learned – Songwriters Worst Nightmare
As a songwriter musician or artist there is the temptation to do everything involved in the process. However we all have specific skill and talents. To be successful we need to concentrate on we do best.
In all of this there were several lessons I needed to learn. Here are some of those lessons.
- A little knowledge is dangerous.
- For those areas were you are weak get an expert.
- Listen to your wife.
- I can’t do everything
- Sometimes being cheap will cost you in the long run.