I'm Tired of the Squeaky Wheel

I’m sick of the squeaky wheel. It’s been a long trip and that wheel has been squeaking like a banshee. While I could ignore it at first, it’s starting to really get on my last nerve.

I tried to drown it out by turning up NPR really loud, but it’s beginning to cut right through the classical music and All Things Considered and is still there squeaking away. It’s giving me a headache.

Figures it’s on the right side of the car. Not that I have anything against the right side. I know it’s necessary for the car to run to have wheels on the right side as well as the left. But I can’t help but be partial to the left side. Because I’m the driver of my car and I’m an American, that’s where I sit. I try not to play favorites and talk badly about the right side of the car, but that’s where the loudest squeaks come from. I sometimes think those wheels like to be loud and obnoxious.

And is it my imagination or is it getting louder? At the beginning of the trip, the squeak was just a normal car sound, kind of like the hum of the engine. Hearing a little bit of a squeak reminded me that the wheels were turning and the car was running the way it should. Sure it meant there was some friction somewhere, but a little bit of friction is good for a car, right?

But then it just wouldn’t quit. Even after we had passed the last service station and it had to know it wasn’t going to get any grease for many miles to come. It seemed to just squeak incessantly about nothing at all, really, just to hear itself squeak.

When I speed up, it squeaks. When I slow down, it squeaks. On the highway, on country roads, in city traffic, it squeaks. Left turns, U turns, even right turns now make it squeak. The only time it ever stops is when I go in reverse. I think that wheel wants to go back to the beginning of the trip and stay there.

“But we’ll never get anywhere,” I try to tell it. But it can’t hear me. It’s squeaking so loud, it won’t listen to me anymore.

I’ve tried putting a little bit of grease on it, but it must not be the exact type of grease or the amount of grease it wants. I think I just encouraged it, empowered it and made the squeak worse.

Other solutions I’ve considered: Kicking the wheel really hard. Getting the other wheels to squeak just as loud, so maybe I’ll become immune. Move to another country where there are no cars. None of these seem like viable options and the kicking one is just mean.

Maybe it will stop on its own. Maybe the wheel will run out of noise and come to terms with the fact that it has to go along on this ride, such as it is. Maybe it will stop because it knows that showing some respect is the right thing to do, even for a wheel.

And maybe it will just shut the hell up so I don’t have to say, “Don’t make me stop this car.”

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