The Power of Small Things

It’s amazing how over and over the same lessons in life come back to us. Today’s repeat lesson: the power of small things.


Stensen and I were trying to figure out why his 5-speed Honda civic would not start.

We tried jumping it…and nothing.
Bought a new one and put it in…and nothing.
We checked the battery cables…nothing.
We checked and changed the fuses in the engine box…nothing.
We had it hooked up to diagnostics at Auto Zone…nothing.

We had visions in our heads of new starters, ignitions, and other mysterious and costly repairs to be discovered at the shop.  We also had the sick feeling in our stomachs (and in our wallets) that comes with that thought!

However, when we were leaving the Auto Zone, the rep told us about the man who lived down the street who was famous for working on and restoring Hondas. He told us the man’s name was Damon.

Stensen and I have wanted to stop by Damon’s place for a long time because he always has a bunch of Hondas in his yard that he is working on and we have seen the finished products of his work because when they are done, he sells them and they look terrific.


With nothing left to do, except wait until Monday and go to a repair shop, we decided to pay Damon a visit.  When we pulled up, Damon and his wife were moving stuff around in his garage. Neither the yard nor the garage was very organized.  In fact, quite the opposite.

Damon first helped us try the fuse swap by pulling some fuses from an old 95 Civic he has sitting in his yard.  After that failed, we told him more specifics of what was going on: brand new battery and no noise, power or any type of crank when we turn the key.

His face lit up and he started walking quickly toward Stensen’s car.  He turned and said, “I am going to fix this for you right now. I know exactly what it is.”

He opened the driver side door, got on his knees and contorted his body so that he could look way under the dash at the clutch pedal. After getting situated he said, “yep”, reached around with one of his hands and fumbled to find the key in the ignition, and started the car.

Stensen and I were elated!

We knew this man just saved us hundreds of dollars and tons of headache.

Damon explained to us that there is a little plastic piece on the back side of the clutch that engages the neutral safety switch. He said the piece dry rots and falls out. Without it, you cannot start the car. He then called one of his friends at the nearby Honda shop to ask if he had one in stock and then told Stensen and me to go get it and that he would install it for us. The part cost $4.96.

We are VERY GRATEFUL for Damon, his wisdom, his expertise and his kindness.

So once again, we learn the power that simple and small things can have on much larger things. A little piece of plastic, the diameter of a dime, was keeping Stensen’s car from operating.

One thought on “The Power of Small Things

  1. Good story, and probably one that will soon apply to me. Abby’s 1986 Toyota MR2 has been in the shed for years, and she’d like to get it started. The last time I tried, it would turn over but not catch.

    Also, grammar Nazi says, "then told Stensen and I to go get it" should be, "then told Stensen and me to go get it."


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