The Tinkerer


Tags Family

I am a tinkerer. Nowhere is this more apparent than web design. I could fiddle with a style-sheet for hours, moving elements one pixel this way and one pixel that way. This is something I inherited from my dad.

During a recent thunderstorm lightning struck a neighbor’s house and fried their big screen TV, which–naturally–was the only appliance not on a surge protector. They were going to throw it away, but dad had “never taken one of those apart before” and was curious about the innards, so he asked for it.

He took it apart and found five motherboards inside. He thought one of the motherboards needed to be replaced, but wasn’t sure, so he ordered a used replacement part on eBay for $20.00.

The television now works. He has never, to my knowledge, repaired a television of any kind before, let alone a modern smart television.

He does this sort of thing all the time.

His willingness to tinker with broken electronics netted me a PlayStation 2 for $1 while the console was current-gen. In that case, the PS2 wasn’t actually broken, it simply needed a little love and affection (don’t we all, gentle reader). The previous owner was using it for a doorstop. I used it for gaming and streaming for years after that.

For a long time he repaired weed eaters and lawn mowers as a hobby. He’d get them at garage sales for dirt cheap (his proclivity for garage sales is another post entirely), repair them, and resell them for a decent sum. He has also been the neighborhood handyman. He has resolved a number of plumbing and electrical issues. I recall one of the neighbors had a toilet that hadn’t flushed properly in years and dad fixed it in about ten minutes. He installs ceiling fans, lighting, faucets, flooring… To be perfectly honest, I am not aware of any task he has been unable to do.