Posted by: Omar C. Garcia | June 4, 2012

Fast Is Not Always Faster

Our lives have become increasing geared to go faster and to expect faster service. From fast food to quick lube to same-day dry cleaning to five-minute car washes to 140-character Tweets to so much more — everything happens fast. And, the more we feast on fast the less tolerant we become of anything sluggish or slow. That’s really not a good thing because there are some things in life that just need to happen slowly over a longer period of time. There are some things that you just can’t or shouldn’t rush.

I was reminded again today why fast is not always faster, or better. After lunch I hopped in my truck to go get a quick oil change before our Texas Water Safari weekend. I decided to go back to the place where I previously had the oil in my truck changed. However an employee told me that they did not have the particular brand of synthetic oil that I wanted. No problem. I drove to another place a few miles father away that did have what I wanted. After waiting about twenty-minutes, they told me that they could not change my oil because two of the screws on the skid plate on my truck were stripped. Yikes! This was not what I wanted to hear. They advised me to go back to the folks who had done the previous oil change.

So, I drove back to Point A and asked to speak with the manager. He told me that he would personally look at the screws on my skid plate and added that they did actually have the brand of oil that I wanted. Oh my soul! Thirty-minutes later he told me that there was no problem with the screws and even invited me into the pit to look for myself. What a relief to see that he was right. Twenty-minutes later I paid for my oil change and drove away, a happy customer in spite of all of the extra time spent in the endeavor. That should have been the end of the story.

When I arrived home later in the afternoon I decided to look under my truck just to make sure that everything was indeed ok with my skid plate. To my surprise, the front three screws were missing. I sighed and shook my head and then drove back to the oil change place and told the guys there about the problem. When the manager saw me he barked at two guys to fix the problem. A few minutes later he told me that they had found the missing screws and that he had intended to call me. And then he handed me his card with a promise that my next oil change would be free.

Please don’t get me wrong. I am not angry or upset. Stuff like this happens and I don’t see the sense in getting angry about it because that doesn’t solve anything. I really do try to glean something useful from the things that happen to me daily or to at least find something to think about. I have found that doing so makes every day a little more adventurous for me. What should have taken no more than about twenty-minutes to do today turned into a two-plus-hour-patience-developing experience. And, that’s ok. God reminded me of several things, including…

• Fast is not always faster.
• It’s easy for folks who get in a hurry to forget to check the details.
• It does no good to get upset or angry when goofy stuff happens to us.
• Messing up and forgetting things is part of the human condition.
• We should find something good to take away from everything that happens to us.


  1. Sigh…but of course you are right…we do have a choice to be angry…if I could only remember that…need to learn that more thoroughly.

    • It’s a lesson I have to keep learning, too. Maybe that’s one reason God continues to give me pop quizzes like this!

  2. Omar,
    We use a mechanic in town to change our oil, etc. Last time I went to “Cecil’s” it was 1.5 hours before my car was ready for pick-up after a mere oil change and check under the hood.. But standing at the counter and listening to the banter between Cecil and his long-time customers made me appreciate that quality and service take time!


    • Good word, Tammy. Good service, good conversation, and good humor are indeed essential ingredients for excellent customer service.

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