Look out for that tree.

Do you remember the cartoon character George of the jungle? And if so do you remember the opening song for George of the jungle, where it states look out for that tree! Well I thought of the cartoon two days ago when while I was backing my truck in my driveway, I slowly backed my truck right into a tree. I had decided to take my 2012 Silverado backwards down my driveway to get it in line with my boat to go fishing. My truck has a rearview camera and it has warning devices when I get close to something. On this occasion while I was looking at the rearview monitor I heard the warning devices go off. At which time I looked at my dashboard and saw the symbol indicating that I had not put my seatbelt on. So I thought the noise, warning noise, was due to the fact that I’ve not put on my seatbelt. So I with arrogance dismissed the warning noise and was even a little irritated that it was going off. In less than a second after I thought that I felt the truck suddenly stop. That is when I realized I’d had run into something. I had backed into a tree. I got out of my truck and looked at the back of my truck to find that the bumper had a small dent in it. I initially did not see any other damage. Thinking that the incident occurred at such a slow speed I thought that maybe I could fix that dent in the bumper. So I began to take the bumper apart and I crawled underneath the truck to look at the damage. I needed to get some tools out of the back of my truck and so I opened the tailgate. It was at this time I heard this horrible noise only to realize that the corner of the tailgate had been peeled back. That was due to the fact that the left rear corner panel of the truck had been pushed in by the accident. And therefore was in the way of the tailgate opening.

This is when all hope of my fixing my truck went out the door. So after years of not having an accident I had to call my insurance agent and file a claim. After the body shop looked at the damage the cost of repair was going to be around $3000. It took me two days to stop beating myself up about backing into a tree in my own driveway.

This got me to thinking about a lot of other things that I’ve done where there were all the warning signs and I ignore them and did it anyway. Things like slamming my own fingers in the car door. And this was after being warned by my wife to be careful closing the door. Or like drinking ice tea so fast that it gave me a headache. It was like eating ice cream after somebody warns you that if you eat it too fast you will get a headache, but do you listen, no.

Have you ever been told that the person that you are dating is a bad person and will hurt you? Only to find out after a long period of time that the person giving you that advice was right? All the warning signs were there from the disrespectful treatment they had for your feelings to the history of that person.

Then there’s the time that you bought a new car that cost way more than you could actually afford. All the warning signs were there but you just had to have the car anyway. Then after a short period of time you have buyer’s remorse and find out that because it cost so much you had to sell it.

Or the time that you made an investment that was considered risky. Not only did your financial advisor warn you about it, but so did your friends and family. And yet I had a gut feeling and went on and invested it in any way.

Or do you have a friend that has never been trustworthy and when they asked you to loan them a tool you did it even though prior experience with this person warned you against it. And you have yet to get the tool back.

Let’s take something that you probably do every day. If you drive a car every day you are constantly warned about what speed you can drive. Or that you’re in a school zone and not to use a cell phone while driving. If you drive in the city you know that there are cameras on a certain corner that will record it if you run the red light. But do you listen to these warnings, probably not. You knew the speed limit was 35 miles an hour and the area is known as a speed trap. So you know the feeling that I had when I backed into the tree. So when you got pulled over and issued a citation you had that same feeling of; why did I do that ?

Or are you like me and you start calling yourself names and questioning your intellect? Does it take a few days for you to calm down and realize that- SHIT HAPPENS?

Well thanks to my wife who continued to remind me that it was not such a big thing and that is why we have insurance I got over it. The finger you slammed into the door will heal. The pain in your brain from eating ice cream too fast will disappear. The person that you were involved with who was bad will be replaced with one that is good. The car and the investment loss will slowly be absorbed.

Life will go on and you don’t need to dwell on the bad things that happened. If you’re lucky you’ll learn from this experience and go on and not make the same mistake again. If you’re unlucky you make a mistake again but it will be less significant and costly.

So like in the song from George of the jungle, my thought today is-LOOK OUT FOR THAT TREE.




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