Thursday, January 12, 2012

Flat tire illustrates value of "taking care of things the right way"

I rode my bike to work yesterday and it didn't go smoothly.

In the first half of the ride I hit some bumps and my tail light bounced off  the holder. Luckily I heard it hit the asphalt so I stopped and then went looking into the weeds to find it. It continued blinking after falling off so i easily found it. But annoying to disrupt my pedaling.

About 5 mins later I got a flat in the rear tire. Almost exactly at the half way point of my 10 mile ride. I annoying pulled to the side of the road again to fix it only to find that I left my pump at the house. Drat! After considering my options of basically walking to work or trying to think a way to get a ride... i figured I'd just gingerly ride the rest of the 5 miles with the flat. I knew the tires were already old and I should have replaced them. (I fault myself for trying to get a few more months out of the tires.) So I didn't mind riding it flat, which certainly ruined it. I tried to be extra careful about riding over anything that might damage the rim. It was an slow process but better than walking. Annoyingly I finally made it to work late and in a foul mood.

But I'm determined take a good lesson out of this. That is, to not put off maintenance on things like my bike. I'm always in favor of being frugal and saving money, but sometimes it's better to not penny-pinch. This is something I certainly follow with car maintenance. I change the oil on schedule and use a quality oil and filter. It's just not worth saving a few bucks to prolong changes or skimp on the replacement products.

I can see how I should apply this philosophy to more aspects of life. I'll still buy generics over name-brand when appropriate, like dish soap. But I'll be better about buying and spending in ways that add extra value. With this in mind, I'll be ordering brand new bike tires and tubes this week. I will spend money on top quality stuff,  puncture resistant versions. I figure, and know, it's a better value for my time and money.

Are there items and stuff that you just don't skimp on to save a little bit of money? What are they? Does this work out for you?

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