Tuesday 28 October 2014

How To Deal With The “White Van’s” In Your Life


In this case the white van is not the actual vehicle in the picture, it is a metaphor for an obstacle which is in your way. I want to get to that power outlet so I can plug in and charge my batteries. There is a white van parked there (still, never moved) blocking my way, what do I do?

Here are a few ideas on how to deal with the situation, (most of which are not recommended, but fun to consider):

1) Have the White Van towed

I could call Bylaw Enforcement or someone and have the van towed, I would then be able to park. The problem is that it would look suspicious for me to be parked there in its place. Then there is the nasty business of having some guy’s van towed from behind his own business . . . . hmm not good.

2) Blow the White Van in place

I could just rig some type of explosive device and just blow that sucker in place. Then it gets moved and I can park there again. The problem with this is two-fold. For one the cops aren’t stupid and will figure out that it was me and as much I want that van moved, I don’t want to go to jail. Oh yeah, and there is the tricky business of risking blowing up my place of employment . . . again not recommended.

3) Push The White Van out of the way

There are a number of large big rigs around here, there is even a construction site. I could hotwire or otherwise get going one of these things and just push that White van out of the way. Again, with me parking there and the cops not being idiots, I would be the likely suspect. 

4) Leave the White Van there and find another solution

The key element in “survival training” (as far as I understand) comes down to assessing three things: 

1) What do you have?
2) What do you need?
3) What is your goal?

For me, I have Wanda, I need a way to charge her batteries, so I don’t need to move the White Van but find a way to work around it. The White Van is only blocking one solution to my problem, not all of them. 

I know that one should always have a Plan B; this was my mistake. I had hoped that I could keep plugging in behind work whenever I wanted. Then I wouldn’t need a Generator until I quit work. I could save the money and be fine. In summer, when I don’t need heat, I can stretch that one charge and be fine. In winter, the heater sucks juice out of the batteries. I need to charge up twice a week, that is life. 

I bought a generator yesterday, and got a good price. Here, meet “Jenny” the Geny(erator) . . . come on, you saw that one coming. 

She is a little shy right now as I haven’t set her up yet, so she is still in the box. I didn’t want to get the bare minimum one that I needed, nor did I want to get one that could run a small city. This one should more than suffice to charge up Wanda’s batteries and not be straining. 

I will set her up tonight after work at work (I don’t feel like freezing myself as I set this up in the dark thanks). I will then run her for a few hours and charge up the batteries somewhat. That will at least give me enough charge to run the furnace and get some heat. 

We all know, however, that if I had been smart, I would have been looking for sales, having already determined the type of generator I needed. That way I could have saved money, got the generator I needed, had my Plan B in place. 

If I had already had the Generator as a backup, I would have just driven somewhere quiet Sunday night and ran the Generator to charge up Wanda’s batteries. The failure here, and the source of my frustration, is my own failure to imagine this possibility and make preparations for it. I had become too dependent on that one power plug, when you are too dependent on one thing, you are vulnerable. 

If I lose my job for any of a thousand reasons and 99.5% of them are not my fault, I will apply for UI, talk to a few places and try to get something in the industry. Then I will look into the oil patch. I am very mobile so I can get something, somewhere. That is my Plan B there. 

So my Plan B for tonight was my new Pyjamas.

Since I have no power I can’t run the furnace so that meant no heat last night. I was fine in my thermal undies under my comfy clothes in my bed under four quilts. I even pulled the sheet over my head for a bit. It got down to -4 overnight and in the house, when I got up, this is what I found. 

It says zero but it seems to be a bit off so it might have gotten down to -4 in Wanda. I will admit that it takes more motivation to get out of bed when it is that cold. Of course being over 40 and the peeing at least once each night is not fun either when it is that cold. 

Once again I went to work reeeeeal early so I could warm up, write and I even possibly thought of setting up Jenny this morning, then I realized that I had better wait until tonight when I can actually start her up at the back of the shop. 

Not everything is “The Universe” or other people out to get you. For all I know it was some worker who went on vacation and parked his van in the one spot he thought wouldn’t affect anybody. It is entirely possible that this had nothing to do with me parking behind there, or maybe it did.  The real failure is me and my inability to see this possibility and prepare for it. 

When faced with the “White Vans” in your life, don’t focus on the obstacle, focus on the goal. Not every challenge or obstacle has to be overcome, most can (and should) just be worked around. At the end of the day, as long as I have power, why should I care if that White Van is parked there? 

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