While the country hovered in semi-reopened limbo throughout 2021, it seemed like the only news coming in was bad. Trump supporters raiding the Capitol. The delta variant’s summertime surge. The Supreme Court dismantling Roe v. Wade. Elon Musk-worshipping, MLM-in-sheep's-clothing bros spending millions in climate-destroying crypto for proof that they own a .jpg and heralding it as the future of art.
You can’t really fix the world’s big problems on your own. But you can fix the small stuff in your life. Having somehow graduated from my youthful indiscretions to the rank of Official Suburban Dad, I found a sense of accomplishment in home repair in 2021—and was reminded of some bigger lessons along the way.
The Bathroom FaucetIt was around early January when I heard something dripping in the bathroom. What with an attempted coup by domestic terrorists led by an impeached president on my mind, I put off investigating it. A few days later, the hardwood floor around our sink had buckled and warped, so I finally replaced the seals inside the faucet—an easy, 10-minute job. Replacing the floorboards took five hours.
Lesson: Fix the problem before it gets progressively worse and destroys everything. (This is a helpful tip for democracy, too.)