I’ve been reluctant to blog about my sideview mirror. The story is embarrassing, and I don’t embarrass easily. It illustrates the inconvenience and expense of ADHD and impulsivity.

Years ago, my wife told me that I was driving my car too fast into the garage. “You’re going to hit the side of the garage one day,” she said. I told her not to worry. Entering the garage quickly was like shooting a free throw in basketball, which was my sport. There is one obvious problem with that analogy: No one makes 100% of their free throws!

I hadn’t accounted for the growing collection of lawn care supplies along the left wall of the garage, which was narrowing the opening that I had to navigate. My entry was getting closer to the right side. The first time I missed my free throw, I just barely clipped the sideview mirror, taking off only a small piece of the casing. The mirror remained in tact, so no big deal…only a cosmetic problem. The second time that I missed, a bigger piece came off, and eventually the mirror took a big hit and was no longer useful. I lost count of the missed shots, but I was still shooting over 90% from the free throw line, which would be competitive in the NBA.

I thought it might be best if I used the garage less often. But just like in basketball, when you don’t practice, you don’t shoot as well.

One morning last year, in a hurry to get to the office, I failed to exit the way I had entered the night before. The crunch is a horrible sound. This time, the mirror fell out quickly. It hung by the electric cords that normally would allow me to adjust the view.

I found some blue packaging tape in the garage that would keep the mirror secure in its white casing. I adjusted the mirror to where I needed it and applied the tape. My wife didn’t like the color of the tape. So, I switched to a transparent packaging tape. I tried to adjust the mirror after taping this time and cracked the mirror in the process. The transparent tape didn’t last too long in the humidity and rain of a Nashville summer, and so I resorted to rubber bands, which don’t last too long in humidity and rain.

The mirror isn’t functional now, but I still have to keep it attached and in the casing, or else it will hang by the cords and bang against the car door. I keep tape and rubber bands in the car now so I can change them frequently. I’ve learned to turn my head around like an owl before changing lanes on the freeway.

If you wonder why I haven’t replaced the sideview mirror, then you’ve never priced one. There is a silver lining in this story: The car is fifteen years old with a good engine that gets an oil change every 3,000 miles. It will be on the road for years to come. In time, it will have its third sideview mirror on the passenger side. It will be a pre-owned mirror!

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