I have a 1981 Diesel Chevette.  An unlikely car with 54 horsepower that gets about 42 miles per gallon.  On Monday, heading home, turning the key lit up the dash, but turning it further resulted in power failure.

I thought maybe it was the battery, so I replaced it.  That worked, although everything was very corroded.  I made a note to myself to change the cables soon.  That night, despite the new battery, I had another power failure.  Fiddling with the connections earned me a start.

The next morning nothing would earn me that start.

So, I managed to get to O’Reilly’s and buy some new cables and connectors.  So now you know.

But anyway, my point has to do with while I was replacing the cables.  That involved removing the positive cable from the starter, as well as some auxiliary line to a relay.  And too, the negative from its various grounds.

Simple enough, in words.  But working with matter in the real world is never so easy.  Firstly, I didn’t have all the tools required.  I had a socket wrench, but all my sockets except 2 1/2s  and a 14mm were for a smaller wrench.  So, I had to use a crescent wrench.  But the only crescent wrench available small enough to fit in the spaces was really cheap and kept changing size on me.  The starter was way back in the darkness and I basically had to contort myself to both fit my hand back there and my head down there in such a way as to be able to put the wrench on the nut and see what I was doing.  It literally took me 30 minutes or more to get one nut off.  I’m out of practice, but I imagine it would have been challenging for most people.  Ultimately, it required of me a sort of surgery-room intensity, all the while leaning over precariously with one foot sometimes in the air to counter balance myself.

Like I’ve always noticed working on cars, it was really hard on my lower back and my shoulders kept trying to store tons of tension.

Along the way, however, I realized that I was doing Yoga (very poorly).  All of a sudden, activity snapped into place and I started assuming asanas and then modifying them as required by the physical constraints of the problem.  I started thinking about the problem at a different level.  Not just, “fixing the car” or “doing Yoga” but, doing Yoga while fixing the car.

So, I need to get at that nut, eh?  Okay, Virabhadrasana 3 (Warrior 3).  Go at it from this angle, then that one, then this leg, then that one.  That’s just a simple example.  There were mudras for the hands, because that nut, I had to start it with my fingers, because the 24 degrees I could turn the crescent wrench in that space were inadequate.  That required a lot of coordination between my fingers and my shoulders and waist.  Every motion became something done with purpose.

Anyway, I put the cable on wrong and it touched the line coming from the ignition, so I had to remove the hard-to-remove bolt again, although it took me half the time, and I had to rearrange all the cables so that the cable coming from the battery was as far from the ignition cable as possible.  In those spaces, and I really question the beneficence of the engineers responsible, that meant about the skinniest squeezed measure of my pinky.  But, putting the battery cable in that position reduced even further the wiggle room for the crescent wrench that already had been so cramped before.  24 degrees became something like 12 degrees, and there were tons more opportunity for the wrench to change size (in retrospect, I should have taped the size adjusting wheel in place…)

Attaching the positive cable the second time took about an hour.  There were other complications, but there is no point get into the minutia of that project.

We can do yoga anywhere.  The shower is a great place, too.  I don’t mean doing some Yoga while in the shower.  I mean ‘showering yoga’.  Asanas that involve the movements used to clean the body.  The shower is maybe the best place to have a good sequence of motions with purpose that you do on a daily basis.  Holds can be done on the rinsing.  A nice back bend to rinse the hair.  Forward bend to wash the feet.  Prayer hands behind the back to wash the back.  Stand on one leg to wash the other.  I’m sure you get more of the picture than you probably wanted.

But hey, there’s so many things to do, we best find those things we can do simultaneously, not in the sense of multitasking, a little here, a little there (fake simultaneity), but rather, in the sense of amalgamating purposes into multifaceted actions (true simultaneity).

Call it synchronicity.

One thought on “Yogautomechanics

  1. Aatmayog says:

    Very well put. Yoga can be done anywhere.

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