There was exactly one hole in the inner tube, and it corresponded with the hole in the tire. Just one hole, nice and big, approximately the size of the nail that punctured the tire.
It was also covered with all manner of dirt, like whoever had last worked on this thing rolled the inner tube around in his mother's garden before he installed it. I washed it thoroughly, and could hear the Fix-a-Flat sloshing around inside the tube as I did, wondering how I might get it out since I couldn't find my valve stem core remover.
Finally I held it up with the hole down, squeezed, and laughed at the way the tube pissed Fix-a-Flat into the sink.
I dusted everything with corn starch to kill the leftover stickiness from the Fix-a-Flat, and then started reassembly. I had a brainstorm--half of one--when I realized that my extra-tiny needle nose pliers could unscrew the valve core so I could get all the air out.
Pity I didn't think to put the thing back in once the tube was empty.
I installed the tire on the rim.
Boy, doesn't that sound easy, when I put it that way? I struggled with that shit for half an hour, almost giving up on it...but I did finally manage to get the tire all the way onto the rim.
...still can't find the valve core removal tool, which I need to install the valve stem core since I didn't put it in before...and no, I can't use the needle-nose pliers this time. I tried that; all it did was fuck up the valve core because they're too f-ing long for me to get a straight shot at the stem.
So I spent another fruitless half an hour trying to find any of the approximately half-dozen of the f-ing things I own. All have vanished into the woodwork. The one that I used on the dirt bike, last summer, that one is supposed to be in my toolbox. Why isn't it? How the fuck should I know? I must've used it and failed to put it back, but it's not in any of the places it would be if I had done that. I went over the workbench, I went through the toolbox, I went through the tool chest (even to cleaning the top tray in the vain hope the damn thing was buried) and I went over and over and over all these places several times.
I've got a ziplock bag of all the tire-patching stuff that I accumulated when I was working on the dirt bike. It's not in there. It's not in the special compartments atop the tool box. It's not in the Jeep. It's not in the tool chest. It's not in the junk drawers in the kitchen. It's not on my desk anywhere.
And so because I can't find a tool that costs fifty cents, I can't finish the rear tire. It'd be one thing if it was something big and complex that I needed, you know, like a tire machine or something--but this is a pissy little thing that stores charge a dollar for--and at that they're making an obscene profit on each unit sold. Shit.