Remembering the little things

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For every big task that’s easy to remember, there are dozens that easily slip your mind. Paying the mortgage falls in the former category; changing smoke detector batteries falls in the latter.

Fortunately, someone cleverly tied smoke-detector batteries to daylight-saving time, so that one’s easy to remember. But most other periodic chores tend to fall by the wayside until we fall right over them.

A case in point is the filter in my shop air cleaner. Up on the wall as it is, it’s an out-of-sight, out-of-mind kind of thing. I consistently forget to clean it or, when needed, replace it. That was the situation last week when a simple coincidence brought it to my attention.

My wife changes the filter in our furnace seasonally, and had been after me to pick up a new one since the first day of spring. And although I do most of the household shopping, I kept forgetting it. Before doing some sanding last week I reached up to snap on the air cleaner, which reminded me I still hadn’t picked up that furnace filter. That made me take a look at the filter in the cleaner, which was caked with what seemed like pounds of fine dust, which reminded me that I hadn’t cleaned or replaced it since… well, I couldn’t remember since when.

The air-cleaner filter was beyond cleaning, so I pulled it out and bagged it. Since I had shopping chores on my to-do list anyway, I procrastinated the sanding job I was about to do and headed to the store. With the new filter in place I can really tell the difference in shop dust levels, but it’s still something I wouldn’t have noticed without the furnace-filter reminder bringing the shop filter to my attention.

Got anything like that around your shop that needs taken care of? I’m betting you do.

Till next time,


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