Have you ever done something this embarrassing?
And you’re the only one to blame when you start by saying “it’ll be fine,” and end with things clearly not being fine.
It starts with blue skies, and ends with fluorescent lights.
You go from laughing with your family while boating on a high mountain lake, to sitting alone waiting for someone to come help you.
From jumping off boulders into the beautiful blue water, to being surrounded by white walls and flashing screens.
You see, on our third and final day at the lake, we rented a motorboat. What the outboard skiff lacked in speed and function it made up for in unreliability and instability. We were ready for an adventure.
I was seated on the rear bench with my left arm twisted behind my back to grab the 5-horsepower throttle, while the kids sat in the middle row. At the front was my wife, who chose to face backwards and watch the girls' smiles instead of facing forward and being nervous about my boating ineptitude.
There was a dock on the remote side of the lake that led to new public bathrooms, which were “closed for the season” in the middle of summer. Naturally, this led to a mother-daughter lesson on shitting in the woods.
After a little swimming, sunbathing, and instructing an 8-year-old that lake swimming is, in fact, a perfectly good substitute for toilet paper, it was time to move on to the next stop. Little did I know the next stop would put me out of contact with the world for 2 days.
Pulling up to the sandbar, Jessica jumps out of her backwards seated position to pull us in. It’s the perfect swimming hole.
Linked up logs keep boating fishermen from snagging a swimmer. There’s a sandy beach area for wading. And it has the number one requirement for every Class A swimming hole: A giant boulder to jump off.
To make sure you acknowledge her superiority, the boulder has a steel ladder leading up to the top. Fuck. Yes.
After scientifically checking the depth by pencil diving down to the bottom with my hands in the “don’t shoot” position, I declared it safe. We all took turns jumping off the granite dome, until an idea presented itself that I couldn’t pass up.
Taking Maddie by the hand, I pulled out my “water resistant” iPhone 11 and captured a badass selfie video of us jumping in together on the count of 1,2,3! And that’s when it happened.
Phone screen = Black.
iPhone = Brick.
Me = Sad.
And confused. The phone is water resistant, and I’ve taken underwater pictures with it other times. But...that was before.
Before the screen cracked. Before I made the mistake. Before I sat at the ATT store for three hours staring at the bright lights and flashing screens.
The mistake I made was taking shortcuts, the easy way out. When my screen cracked, I should have gone to the apple store, or even back to ATT. But I didn’t want to deal with it. I didn’t “have time” to get it handled correctly.
Instead I went to the strip mall “Johnny’s Phix Your Phone” place and got a new screen slapped on for less than $79.
It occasionally froze, and had an odd little line down the middle. And, apparently, wasn’t exactly (or remotely) water resistant.
Without a phone during my time at ATT store purgatory, I had plenty of time to reflect. If I wouldn’t have cut corners and got it fixed the right way, I wouldn’t be staring down a $809.93 pay-off for my broken phone.
Where else in my life am I cutting corners? Where am I looking for the easy way out, which will make my life harder in the future?
Your homework this week: Where in your life are you cutting corners? Where are you looking for the easy way out, which will make your life harder in the future?
Life is easy when you live it the hard way, so stop cutting corners and get the job done right.
Otherwise, you risk losing an entire day’s worth of “boating” pictures you’ve been sneaking of your smoking hot wife in her bikini. Never. Again.
P.S. Where are you cutting corners?