You Can Teach Yourself Anything with YouTube

I guess I was a lucky little girl.  My mom taught me I could do anything I set my mind to.  Plus, Dad expected me to take care of things when he was gone.

Mom could fix just about anything by taking it apart and putting it back together again.  She did that with the vacuum cleaner, the toaster, my roller skates, and even the car.  She probably learned how to fix cars because Dad was always buying her a "really good car, that had only been driven to church and back by an old widow, or an old spinster, or an old school teacher," or some other old woman, who "never drove over 40 miles per hour," and that's why even if the car was so old that it was the only one of its kind left on the road, it was a steal for only $75.00.  Mom learned how to "burn the carbon" out of the engine that built up all those years because those old ladies never passed another car.  I learned that if you really want your car to keep running like a top, sometimes you have to rev the engine and drive it faster down a long stretch of flat road.

'Course Mom could do more than "burn off the carbon."  She could hold down the butterfly, get the carburetor going, use the jumper cables, and pound on the battery connections to convince it to turn over the engine.  She knew how to use the engine to warm up a baby bottle, too.  She probably got that idea from Grandma, 'cause Grandpa told me Grandma cooked whole meals in an iron pot sitting on the engine block whenever they took to the road.  As far as I know, Mom never tried that one.

If Mom couldn't figure out how to do something by herself, she looked it up in a book.  That's how she learned how to paper-mache.  That's how she learned how to make a horse training ring.  And, she had a whole slew of books about how to train dogs.  She even had some books about how to raise children, but she told me once that she only used those for stuff about how to recognize measles and mumps and a bunch of other diseases, and only for that when she just had one or two kids. Chicken pox looks about the same on any kid, and once one kid gets a disease, sure as shooting, the rest are gonna get it, too.

I understood pretty early that I could learn how to do just about anything if I just kept my eyes open, paid attention and used the resources at hand.  Later on, I learned it's a great idea to ask, because experts can show me how and tell me why they do things the way they do, plus an expert can show me some shortcuts.

A month ago, my son told me that he learned how to fix his built-in oven by watching a YouTube video.  I knew WordPress had great tutorial videos, and I embed YouTube videos in loads of my posts, but I never thought of using it for fixing cars, or ovens, or window shades.  Well, I do have  broken window shade.  So hey, why not?

Wow!  That was easy.

Hmm... What else can I fix?

My air-condition unit.  Okay it's not broken, but look at all the positive comments at the bottom of this video.

Wait, I can make a paper gun that shoots with a real trigger.  More than 3 million people tuned in to find out how to do this.

I really want to take better photos.  Holy smokes!  Look what I can do:

Next time I take a long trip, I'm going to try this engine block cooking:

My grandson loves origami.  Maybe I can tackle this, too.

I can even learn how to replace a knee.  Okay, maybe I can do anything you can do.  But some things take more practice than I'm willing to invest.  (Warning, this might make you a little squeamish, so please don't click the play button unless you really want to see an actual knee replacement.)

My nephew is getting married next June.  Do you think Twerking will still be The Thing?  If I start now and don't throw my back out, I think I can learn to twerk by then.  Two million people viewed this video.

What do you think?  What would you like to learn?  I bet you can find it on YouTube.

Image: YouTube by codenamecueball via Flickr


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