29.5.09

Car Surgery

This past weekend Eric's car developed a clunking noise. I (Jason) always enjoy working on cars, so we took it for a drive and then removed the front tire to explore. We found a torn CV boot that eventually led us to diagnose a worn CV joint. I had to read about this on-line since I knew next to nothing about CV joints. We tried to obtain a second opinion, but we didn’t know any car gurus (and didn’t want to pay a mechanic to tell us). 90% sure of the diagnosis, I set out to replace the CV joint. I did not have all the ideal tools, but I improvised with what I had. I think it all went well, but truthfully I am slightly nervous, since Eric, Rachel and Maggie plan to drive this car around the country this summer.

So where I am I going with this? Well, it struck me that this situation is likely analogous to what I will experience as a surgeon in the developing world. I will be doing operations I have never done before, where there will likely not be an expert available for consultation, so I will have to learn how to do the case from a book or the internet. I won’t have all the right instruments, so I will have to improvise, and I will probably operate on a friend at some point, making the whole experience just a bit more nerve-racking.

Hopefully fixing Eric’s broken ankle in 10 years will go as smoothly as replacing the CV joint on his car!

4 comments:

The Jones Family said...

I'm going to make sure your comrade from Palace Auto sees this post. He would have been happy to help with this kind of surgery. :) - Amy

The Drs. McLaughlin said...

You're 'slightly nervous'?

Hmm...

Maybe there's something here, namely that in these situations, the people who depend on your work are more confident of your skills than you are. And maybe they're right.

Carrie said...

Well done on the diagnosis and "operation". I would have full confidence in your surgery abilities even with no second opinion! Any pictures of your little girl?

Jessica said...

I had to laugh when I saw this. Jason--do you remember working on my car in college?
I believe there was duct tape and a tailpipe involved. Needless to say, the next "mechanic" who looked at it was a bit confused. But I have full confidence in your improvisation skills. Surgery--just patch them up with a bit of duct tape. All will be well.