Thursday, August 4, 2011


Our truck has become temperamental. Our usually reliable Ford 350 with duals has begun acting up! It is so out of character for our trusty diesel steed but several times during the past two months, it has stubbornly refused to start.

It is usually so obedient to our wishes, starting at the first turn of the key and doing our bidding without complaint. True, there have been times when it has gobbled up a lot of our money as it recuperated from some vehicular virus. But this starting/not-starting game is different. It’s mysterious and unpredictable.

During one non-starting episode, we had it towed into a near-by Ford garage only to have it start without hesitation in their repair bay! Last week, during another non-start event, we pushed it by hand a short distance to a more level spot in the parking lot. There, it sputtered a bit but started. We wondered if the truck was having mood swings, going thru a mid-life crisis, or becoming temperamental. Then we realized that every time it has refused to start, it has been parked with its back wheels higher than its front wheels! Does it get dizzy or suffer an anxiety attack? Become unbalanced or unglued? Stubborn? Playing a practical joke on us? We don’t know.

Forty years ago, two psychologists named Myers and Briggs, developed a psychological assessment tool of human personality and temperament. It is called the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator and is currently the "most widely used personality assessment" tool. A long list of questions gathers data about the person being assessed. On the basis of that data, the personality and temperament type of the person is described by letters:
           (attitude) E = extrovert; I = introvert;
           (function) S = sensory; N = intuitive;
           (decision-making) T = thinking; F = feeling;
           (lifestyle) J = judgment; P = perception.
Thus, one's personality type may be described as INFJ or ESTP or other possible combinations of traits.

I doubt that there’s a Myers-Briggs Type Indicator for trucks. But, if there were, I think that, at the present time, ours would be classified as an IMAPain! We’ve not told our temperamental truck yet but it’s scheduled for a "temperament transformation" at the local Ford service center tomorrow! Ssshhh! Don’t tell!

3 Aug 2011 - mshr