The Men of Iron Minute

by Chad Zueck | Director of Content Creation

Creative Solutions to Real World Problems

Teenagers often dream of having their own vehicle. I was no exception. The wanderlust of four wheels, freedom, and adrenaline was intoxicating. I set my sights on my 16th birthday as the day I could buy my freedom, cutting the shackles of parental control. However, there were rules if you wanted a car while growing up in my home. The warden (my dad) set the rules.

I knew the rules:

  1. No car without first having a job
  2. No financial help from the parents
  3. Your car, your upkeep

The rules did not keep me from getting a car. I saved and bought a 1980 Plymouth Horizon, tan in color with a dark brown pinstripe. I loved this car. It was all mine, and I felt a sense of great pride knowing that I worked to buy it, and it was mine to care for. Putting it mildly, it was well worn. The exterior was decent, but the engine was much to be desired. A small 4-cylinder engine with a knack for only starting in warmer weather proved a challenge. It was a bit temperamental at stop signs and intersections. The engine would spark and sputter and eventually die. This isn’t the coolest thing to happen when you’re cruising with friends or girls in the car. But I figured out a remedy. Desperate times require desperate measures.

If the engine started acting up, I would open the hood and put a screwdriver into the carburetor to keep it from shutting off. Occasionally, the engine would backfire and send visible flames into the air. The only thing more deficient than the carburetor where my mechanical skills. “Your car, your upkeep” haunted me. As a fast-food employee, my finances were miserable, so I had to be quick and creative to keep those wheels turning! This isn’t the best fix for the problem, but you must creatively solve problems with out-of-the-box thinking when your back is to the wall.


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The answer may not be obvious, but it may be present.


Creativity unlocks potential.


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The conversation continues on the Men of Iron Podcast –

“You Have What It Takes!” (EP. 116)