Wednesday, October 9, 2013

Single Point of Failure

According to my computer engineering husband, it’s important to find the weak spot in the computer software—that should it fail—causes all the other spots in the system to cramp up, keel over, and die. 

That weak spot is a pimple on the butt of everything—sort of. Or it’s the string on the collar of that made-in-China shirt. Give it a quick tug and the sleeves fall off. 

This weak link is called the single point of failure. 

It’s the single piece of broken crud in your life that is responsible for the systemic destruction of all the other crud in your life that you hold dear.

In our world the single point of failure is a tire on a John Deere garden cart. It’s flat. And that ruins everything—absolutely everything.

That tire is our single point of failure.

We have horses. They poop. A lot. They poop a lot in the barn. And as I have stated in the past, farming is the business of purchasing animals that poop and then moving their poop around. Our John Deere garden cart is the official poop mover. I NEED that cart to move poop, or the poop builds up to gargantuan, mountainous proportions that threaten to avalanche onto small children, burying them alive. I mean it.

One tire went flat on the garden cart. My husband pumped it up. It went flat again. He filled it with magic blow up stuff. It went flat again. He took the wheel off and dragged it to the John Deere tractor repair shop, run by the meanest married couple on the face of the entire earth. 

No really. This couple is so mean that we play Rock-Paper-Scissors to decide who has to go and drop off the flat tire.

Sherwood lost. 

He took the tire to the shop. The shop was closed. Seems the John Deere repair shop couple were so mean John Deere had to shut them down and put them out of business. Burned the repair shop to the ground and sowed the acres with salt. (No, I made that last bit up.) 

Meanwhile, the poop pile continued to build.

“The John Deere repair shop couple were so mean, they’re out of business,” he said, holding the still flat garden cart tire.

“Now what?”

The poop pile grew another foot while we talked.

“Well, I thought about buying another whole wheel deal, but it’s about the cost of the whole darn cart.”

“Now what?”

The top of the poop pile shook loose, rumbling to the barn floor. Road apples danced and rolled near our feet.

“How about using the wheelbarrow?” he said.

“It has a flat tire.”

“A horse! A horse! My kingdom for a horse!” 

Exactly, or in our case it’s, “A tire! A tire! My kingdom for a tire!”

Before the whole kingdom fills up with poop and tips over like the island of Guam if you put too many marines on it. 

(During a House committee meeting, Rep. Hank Johnson of Georgia said he feared that stationing 8,000 Marines on Guam would cause the island to "become so overly populated that it will tip over and capsize.") True Story!!

Single point of failure? How about the whole darn federal government?

Linda (Scoop) Zern 

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