It’s a Jeep thing…
I don’t know what it is, but I know so many guys (and its almost always guys) in their 50’s who get Jeeps. I am sure there is a logical explanation, but I am not going to delve into that.
Well, over the holidays I made the plunge. I bought a ten year old Jeep Wrangler with 130,000 miles on it. Kathy thinks I am out of my mind, but I am not going to delve into that either. It has been a blast getting back to my youth when I worked on cars in high school. It has been well over 40 years since I have even considered the idea and a lot has changed about cars over that time. The Jeep I bought was a very basic model with no bells or whistles. If someone suggested I would ever again own a car without… butt warmers, power anything, cruise control, heated steering wheel, etc… I would have said they were out of their minds. But here I am and there is a sense of purity to it.
What I thought was worthy of sharing is the process around this endeavor. To begin with, a ten year old Jeep needs things, and this one definitely fits that category. As many of you know I am a list person and so I started my list.
The list was broken down into four sections; repairs, maintenance, tools needed, and upgrades/enhancements. Building the list takes observation and research. I began with the research and followed that up with lots of observation. For observation, I took my time and just started looking around – opening the hood, crawling underneath, opening cubbies, looking under the seats and carpets. Next was a deep cleaning: there is a lot to learn from taking things apart to clean them. I then moved on to the routine maintenance, changing all of the fluids and filters. Some of these I don’t think had ever been changed. The gear oil was like molasses and had that burnt oil smell, reminding me of working summers in my father’s plant in Newark NJ. I have progressed to some of the repairs and upgrades, starting with the easy ones and then moving on to the more challenging ones. However, for every one thing I check off the list, I seem to add another two. Something I am very disciplined about is to only doing one thing at a time and try to finishing each task or project in the same day – start one thing, finish one thing. This way the Jeep remains in service.
Some project management thoughts:
- Make and organize lists
- Be observant through the process and keep the list dynamic
- Research tasks and projects
- Refine and modify the list as you go
- Prioritize tasks; urgency, time window, capability, outcome, budget
- Finish what you start
Every day a couple/few boxes show up on our front porch and neither Kathy nor the UPS person seem to be impressed with my efforts. My list still grows, but I am having lots of fun and learning new things.
You know what they say about old dogs… age and maturity don’t necessarily go hand in hand.