I have a co-worker who has a problem. He won’t admit he has
a problem. In fact, he doesn’t believe it’s a problem at all. It’s one of those
problems that can go years and years unnoticed. It has been accepted socially and
overlooked by friends and family … but has escalated to the point of being an
Frankly I should have noticed it years ago. All the signs
were there. It just seemed that he had it under control. But then I started to
notice some of his “magazines” and other reading material concealed in his
office. He started turning his computer monitor around so you couldn’t see what
was on his screen. And of course there were those packages showing up in the
UPS deliveries (things he didn’t want delivered at his home because he didn’t
want his wife knowing about them).
I knew I had to do something about it before it consumed his
entire life. So I waited until I was sure he was on one of those websites at
work … and then I busted into his office walked over to the screen and
confronted him at a moment he couldn’t deny it.
“What’s this?” I exclaimed, catching him before he could
He feebly muttered: “I, ah, was just doing some research for
Mod-Stock and somehow it kicked me
onto this site.”
“Don’t give me that crap. I’ve checked your computer history
and you’ve been here before. And you’ve been to other sites just like it.”
He had no excuse. How could he deny the images on his
screen—enlarged photos of socket sets, hex wrenches and air tools. Yes, he was
“You have a problem,” I told him. “And you need help. You’re
addicted to tools.”
The tell-tale signs were there for a long time. He always
had a new drill or a shiny set of channel locks. His garage was loaded with
table saws and pliers, drill presses and center punches. He even had Harbor
Freight on memory dial.
He always had grease smudges on his clothes … and his hands
were constantly calloused from using screw drivers. And when his wife wanted to
go lingerie shopping at the mall, he would wander off to the Craftsman display
Sure he tried to defend himself by making excuses like he
needed the tools for product installation and testing at work. But somehow it
just seemed he was more interested in his Snap-On ½-inch cordless impact wrench
than he was in the Simmons Skis. And when I started noticing some tools that I
couldn’t even identify—amp load testers, air die grinders, file and rasp sets,
digital calipers, etc.—it was obvious that he had gone over the top.
It was hard for him to recognize his psychological
dependency on tools. But he had to have them. Whenever he would come over to my
shop to help me on a project, I would catch him sneaking glances at my stubby
ratchet set or magnetic tipped screw drivers. He would take his time fondling
through my Snap-On tool chest, admiring how the drawers would easily slide
open. He would ask to borrow stuff … but soon he would have to have his own. He
even had tools that were still in their original wrappings—stuff he had
purchased but didn’t have a need to use.
I told him that for his own good, I would need to take some
of his tools over to my shop. The only way to bust this addiction would be to
eliminate some of the temptations. I was willing to be that friend he needed to
keep these tools until after he got his life back in order.
It wasn’t easy. He was in denial. He was angry. He was out
of control. But it had to happen. It will likely be a long road to recovery.
But I’m willing to go the distance with him, keeping his tools safe until he
reaches a place in his life were he can control his desires.
But for now, all I need to know is … how to set up an
account on snapon.com.