"In his lyrical and humble voice, Father Griffin reported from the world of the young and the lost. It was all fodder for his heart—faith, doubt, longing, Notre Dame's mystique, and the church's mystery. The shining essays of The Pocket-Size God are proof of Griffin's literary gifts, and will evoke for readers a time when they contended with the big questions. Griffin was a treasure, and so is this beautifully written book." —Kathryn Schwille, retired editor at The Charlotte Observer
"Griff was generous, wise, anxious, often difficult to appreciate, but in this symphony of stories we hear his voice—full of hope, suspicious of power, free of double-talk. If you'd listen, he'd tell you the truth as he saw it. You can hear his kindness to students, friends, and the street people of New York, where he served as a parish priest during the summer. As a writer, he could sum up a tangled situation with insights so sharp you might smile, or wince. That kind of grace is a gift." —Carole Walton, radio host, "An Hour of Stories," WSND-FM
“These essays by Fr. Griffin are a wonderful example of incarnational theology. God’s locus of activity is found in human experience, and Fr. Griffin’s reflections on God’s actions and love present in the everydayness of life, whether on the campus of Notre Dame or among the poor and marginal in New York City, permeate every page. We are reminded that God loves each of us as we are and that God desires we grow to love each other with that same grace and compassion.” —Barbara Budde, retired diocesan director of social concerns for the Diocese of Austin
"Father Griffin's essays were widely read, on campus and off, when he wrote them, and they will doubtless continue to appeal to a large audience of people interested in Notre Dame—students, parents of students, alumni, and particularly alumni who attended between 1972 and 1994. For all of their social and cultural commentary, all of their observation of local color on campus or in Times Square, all of their wisecracking, all of their literary references, and yes, all of their occasional sentimentality, these essays are finally autobiographical fragments strewn in the wake of a significant spiritual journey, which, in the Quaker phrase, 'speaks to our condition.'"—Michael O. Garvey, University of Notre Dame
"'Waiting for the Lord has been the story of my life,' [Fr. Griffin] said, opening the final essay he wrote for this magazine . . . five years before his death in 1999 at age 74. In those many preceding essays and throughout a lifetime grappling with the comings and goings of God, the beloved priest shared his search with his many readers . . ., the lonesome and disenfranchised (as a wounded pastor who knew too well their dark nights), and generations of students faithfully and hungrily trying to reconcile the tenets of belief as they met the realities of life head on." —Notre Dame Magazine
“The pieces take up his vocation at Notre Dame, his pastoral work at parishes in New York City, the problems endured by his family and friends, his attempts to parent children not his own and the Church’s effort to evolve at the reforms of Vatican II and the upheavals in American life in the late 20th century. His also discusses larger social issues that he struggled with, including sexuality, declining attendance at Mass, poverty, and intolerance.” —NDWorks
“This is a wonderful collection of essays by the loved and respected Notre Dame Chaplain Fr. Robert Griffin (1925-1999). . . . Griffin is both a wonderful stylist and a brave writer. He addresses painful and complex topics—Catholic anti-Semitism, his brother’s mental illness, the suicide of a gay student—without succumbing to sentimentality. . . . This book extends the ministry of his priesthood and is recommended for all libraries.” —Catholic Library World
Checking the air pressure of your car's tires is a simple thing to do. All it takes is a few dollars for the pressure gauge, a couple of minutes to check the pressure of each tire, and then a trip to the gas station to get each tire to the correct pressure. This is important because the closer your tires are to the manufacturer's suggested guidelines, the better your car will handle, the more evenly your tires will wear, and the longer the tires will last. This is incredibly important in the winter.
Maintaining the correct air pressure in cold weather is a bit more difficult than when the temperature is warm. This is because as the temperature drops, the air temperature inside your tires does, too. This decrease in temperature causes the air to contract, which lowers the air pressure in your tires. After driving for a bit, the air heats up again, but only until you stop. As the tires cool,
the air pressure once again drops.
It can feel like a losing battle because for every 10 degrees Fahrenheit the temperature drops, your tires can lose about 1 pound per square inch (PSI) of pressure. Since it is generally recommended to keep your tires within 5 PSI of the recommended pressure, it becomes more important in winter to check your tires regularly.
Pressure can be affected not just by the generally lower winter temperatures, but also by variances during the day. If the overnight low is below zero, and you set your tire pressure accordingly, you may find that in the afternoon, once the temperature has risen to 30 degrees, your tire pressure has also gone up. If you set your tire pressure in the afternoon, you will then find your tire pressure too low the next morning as you head off to work.
The key to maintaining correct tire pressure in the winter is to keep an eye on the thermometer outside and adjust accordingly. If you encounter a midwinter temperature bump, you can lower your tire pressure to compensate. If you find yourself in the middle of a cold spell, increasing tire pressure is recommended to maintain control and grip on icy roads.
Because of the large difference between day and night temperatures, as well as those in the sunlight or shade, you will want to check your tire pressure more often than you would when day/night temperature swings aren't as drastic. This is also recommended for people who have heated garages for their cars, as this false "hot" read will give an overestimate of your tire's pressure, compared with when it is out in the cold.
Finally, knowing what is meant by recommended pressure is also key. A manufacturer's recommended air pressure for your tires is the cold temperature, not the pressure after you've been driving for a few minutes. Using this measurement, as opposed to a mid-afternoon measurement, will ensure that your tires aren't always running low.
Photo courtesy of Highways Agency, flickr