Driving down to DC today my tire blew. It was nothing short of terrifying. Three kids in the back. This guy, Tony, saved us. pic.twitter.com/eTnliRsqz1
— Bethany S. Mandel (@bethanyshondark) May 10, 2018
The second, from Channnn @Chan_the_world (and, no, I can’t figure out why this time around, only the text of the tweet appears, but if you follow the link you’ll see more context, including the fact that she’s a 17 year old black girl):
So my dads tire blew up on the freeway and this dude, with a confederate flag tattoo, wearing a confederate flag t-shirt, with confederate flag car stickers, stopped and changed our tire. My mind is blown, don’t judge a book by its cover y’all
Two tweets, to which I’ll add a third incident, my own tire-changing story, when I, a 5’3″ 115 lb weakling of a 24 year old, who had always been told, “if you get a flat tire, make sure you have a spare and the equipment in your car but you can’t change it yourself so just sit in your car to be safe while you wait for a patrol car to come and contact AAA for you,” had a flat tire on I-94 on my way back to grad school from a visit home. “Be careful of strange men” — but an older black man pulled up and set about changing my tire. When he was done, I thanked him and gave him the $20 that my mom had stuck in my pocket before I left, not so much as “payment” but it was a sort of “found money,” in my mind (mom had a hard time believing my grad school stipend was enough to live on, but it was plenty, in grad student housing and a low-cost area), so it might as well be his “found money.”As I write this I am curious as to whether I told my mom about this at the time. I might not have, because it would have just worried her. Mom, if you’re reading this, it was OK, and nothing bad happened.
Of course, this was well before the days of smartphones. And it was all before the days of reliable cars — at least for me, anyway. I fancied myself an expert in jump-starting a car, for instance, and I could tell you more stories about my (and my now-husband’s) exploits in keeping that car running until we replaced it.
But my question for readers today is, what are your “tire-changing” experiences — your stories where random strangers have helped you, or where you’ve helped random strangers? And do you think there is a certain type of person who’s more likely to be a tire-changer?
Featured image from pixabay; public domain.