Mixing Helpfulness and Humor Since 2005

Thursday, May 31, 2007

Cereal Tip of the Day

When you open a new box of cereal instead of opening up the entire bag make a hole just big enough to pour your cereal out. This will reduce spilling and help keep your cereal fresh.

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Wednesday, May 30, 2007

Save Moo-lah Tip of the Day, Part 3

9. Refill and Reuse Cups
"Many of us get take our coffee in the morning and were using plastic and cardboard cups," said Plenty Magazine Managing Editor Deb Snoonian. "Bring your own mug. You can leave one at work; you can even often times bring a reusable mug as you're commuting in your car. It can be refilled over and over again. Wash it at home it's a nice habit to get into that saves you one cup a day (Ah Ms. Snoonian, I've missed you since last week. What would I do without your wisdom in my life?).

10. Pay Your Bills Online
It's not only quicker and easier to pay by computer, it also puts a major dent in the paper waste pile.

11. Become Battery Smart
Stretch your battery use. A battery too drained to power a flashlight might be perfect to operate your TV remote. Before you pitch it - switch it!

12. Car Air Conditioning
It's practically standard on modern cars. Use it wisely. At higher speeds, open windows create drag and lower your mileage. Roll them up and use the air and recirculation. At slower speeds and around town, roll down your windows and catch a cool breeze.

13. Drive Thru
Avoid the drive thru. Instead of idling in line with your engine running for several minutes, save the gas by parking and going inside for your order.

14. B.Y.O.B.
Bring Your Own Bag. Some grocery stores give you cash toward your next purchase for every bag you bring in to use again. It saves them and you money. "In the U.S., we use five hundred billion plastic bags every single year and only three percent of those get recycled," said Deb Snoonian, Managing Editor of Plenty Magazine. "You can also buy permanent bags with designer colors." (It never even occurred to me to grab from the pile of plastic Wal-mart bags before I headed back to said store. Although I’m a little nervous about the look the cashier is going to give me when I tell her I’ve brought my own.)

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Tuesday, May 29, 2007

Flipping Tip of the Day

So the slotted turner you were using to flip burger yesterday just didn't cut it did it? You can hardly flip a dead cow, much less slash an attacker with a 4" blade or open a bottle. Next time try the Barbecue Turner of Death™ from Pampered Chef. Because you always needed a never-needs-sharpening knife to open your Ale-8 while flipping burgers.

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Monday, May 28, 2007

Memorial Tip of the Day

Impress your friends with the simple fact that Memorial Day was originally called Decoration Day. Or better yet, impress the people you don't know at the party you're headed to today, because you're friends will know you're not that smart.

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Sunday, May 27, 2007

iPod Tip of the Day

So yea have an iPod, and there is always the struggle on how to listen to it in your car. The iTrip and other FM transmitters are a popular "solution". As with many other in-quote solutions out there, it doesn't always work. The biggest trick is to find an empty station, that is surrounded by other empty stations. That gives you something to do on a boring Sunday, but its not exactly fun.

Belkin has come to the rescue with their new web tool
my best FM stations. Just punch in your zip and you've got a great starting point to finding a clear station!

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Friday, May 25, 2007

Mo Money Mo Problems Tip of the Day

Looking to save a little more money when eating out? Get gift certificates here for 50% off.

Update: For none Lexington, KY readers, check HalfOffDeals.com

You can save when eating in, too. Couponmom.com has all sorts of suggestions. You don't even have to be a mom to follow them. Here's a strategy: use an online 50%-off coupon to buy gift certificates from a [participating] website where they are already 50% off, and you could turn a $40 meal into a $10 one!

BONUS ETIQUETTE TIP: Please remember to tip your waiter according to the regular value of your meal!

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Thursday, May 24, 2007

Landscaping Tip of the Day II

Citizen Grim recommends the following plants for all of your shade/sun requirements:

  • Pieris: (I know they have some at Lowe's right now. They stay green all winter, and have lots of little flowers all over in the spring)

  • Bleeding Heart: (they bloom around June, then die off. Gets its name from shape of the flowers)

  • Ferns (need to stay wet, and out of the wind, but otherwise should be fairly easy to grow)

  • Hostas: (low and leafy, generally like the same environment as ferns)

Part shade:
  • Climbing Hydrangea: (a flowering vine that can get pretty large, and comes back every year, looks good on fences or trellises)

  • Daylilies: (they grow along the sides of roads everywhere, and bloom in the summer)

  • Japanese maple: (these don't get very big, and they look pretty cool. The prices reflects this, though)

  • Azaleas: (I think you picked up some of these from wal-mart, they don't like extreme heat or cold, but they get covered with flowers)

  • Euonymous (I think this is at Lowe's, too. It's basically a shrub that spreads, staying low to the ground, so it looks good in front of windows)

  • Spreading Yew: (similar to the above, this evergreen stays fairly low, and gets little red berries on it. Don't eat them, though.)

  • Flowers: (I think most flowers out there prefer full sun. You can pretty much browse a garden center in May or June to see what sort of flowers appeal to you. Remember that annuals won't come back next year)

  • Dwarf Fruit trees: (obviously, trees can get pretty large, but you can get dwarf fruit trees, cherry trees, etc that will only get about 15 feet tall, and 10 feet wide, which might be nice for the corner of your yard - they tend to have tiny flowers all over in the spring, and can grow fruit)

Another thing that looks good is to alternate sizes and textures - tall things in the back, short in the front

Or you can have some grassy-looking things with some more leafy-looking things. Rocks generally look nice. Here's an

Variety is ideal, as long as you keep things together that like similar amounts of sunlight & moisture.

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Wednesday, May 23, 2007

Neighbor Tip of the Day

Before you perform a ridiculous action like the one I'm about to describe, or one even more ridiculous, do yourself a favor and look all around to be sure there are no neighbors watching. Otherwise when one greets you AFTER the ridiculous performance, you'll not only be scared, you'll be morbidly embarrassed. Here's an example of such a scene:


JASON has just caught a mouse, and disposed of the body in an all-purpose Wal-Mart bag. Carrying the bag as if it contained 3 tons of nuclear waste, JASON attempts to open the outside TRASH CAN without breathing. He drops the bag in the can, and realizes tomorrow is trash day, so decides to wheel the can to the curb.

The can gets wrapped around his HOSE and nearly tips, and nearly yanks the house out of the wall.

JASON (under breath)

JASON continues to wheel the can toward the curb, only to almost step in dog doo, which is NOT from his dog (as his leash prevents him walking in this area.)

JASON (under breath)
&$%@ *$%#!

Gently avoiding the multiple landmines, JASON then begins to lose control of the unwieldy trash can and it nearly tips over to the front. Performing a pseudo-dancing-with-the-stars / ju-jitsu maneuver, JASON saves the can and looks MOSTLY all around to make sure no one notices. He's clear.

JASON shakes his head while prancing to the door.

NEIGHBOR watches, unseen on porch directly next to JASON'S.

Good morning.

Eh... How's it going? (slams door)

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Tuesday, May 22, 2007

Save Moo-lah Tip of the Day, Part 2

This is part 2 of our 3 part series. Be sure to check out items 1-3 from last week.

4. Aerosols
Limit your use of aerosol cans. Because they have limited recycling value, the containers will probably wind up in a landfill. Instead of aerosols, look for spray bottles, liquids, powders and roll-ons.

5. Laundry Room
By making sure your lint filter is clean and your dryer exhaust free to open and close, you are essentially tuning up the efficiency of your appliance. It will run better and be more cost efficient.

6. Collect the Rain
Place a barrel under a gutter downspout and let it fill over time. Plenty Magazine Managing Editor Deb Snoonian said, "Rain water is actually healthier for plants and gardens than tap water which often has chlorine in it to kill bacteria, but bacteria can inhibit plants from growing (Once again, thanks Deb. Boy, isn't she a know-it-all?).

7. Reduce Paper
The paper trail follows many of us, adding hundreds of pounds of waste. You can reduce it with just a few changes. Save printing: send documents by email and keep files on your computer, not a filing cabinet.

8. Print Double Sides
You can save plenty of paper by programming your printer to use both sides of the paper. In the case of a long report, do you really need 500 one-sided pages?

Monday, May 21, 2007

Coffee Tip of the Day

A coffee filter can make a great little snack bowl. It's like a paper towel with edges!

Coffee Filter filled with Chex Mix

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Sunday, May 20, 2007

Game Tip of the Day

The highly addictive game Wingnuts is now free for Mac users. They came out with a sequel, so they're giving away the old one now. Just go to Wingnuts 2 homepage and look in the right hand column for "Download WingNuts1 for FREE!"

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Friday, May 18, 2007

Save Gas, Burn more Jetfuel Tip of the Day

There's a new airline called Skybus operating out of Columbus, Ohio that is positioning itself to offer ridiculously cheap flights.

Columbus to Seattle? $75
Columbus to Los Angeles? $100
Columbus to Boston? Freaking $10!

They are also running a current special where the first ten seats sold on any flight will be only $10 - regardless of the destination.

Okay, you might notice a pattern - for the time being (until they expand), you have to fly in or out of Columbus. A little inconvenient perhaps, but we're just close enough to make it worthwhile.

How do they offer flights so cheap? By cutting back on a lot of luxuries we take for granted. Flight times are somewhat limited at this point. Checked bags cost extra ($5 each for the first two bags). Pretzels and mini-Sprites cost extra. Tickets are nonrefundable. There is no first class.

But there are some positives, too (besides the ridunk cheap prices). For example, they fly in and out of secondary airports, avoiding the crowds and delays that are common with the big airports. The seats are leather. They fly orange planes. Also, their website is pretty amusing.

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Thursday, May 17, 2007

Mouse Tip of the Day

While at Asbury, I learned a few things about rats. Basically, they're neophobic, crafty and supposedly like peanut butter. But, I learned something recently that may be helpful in catching an innocent little mousey running around your housey. I've developed the perfect bait cocktail to nearly guarantee the catch of this unwanted critter. Critter Control suggests using peanut butter to bait the trap, but with the Asbury Rat Endemic of 2005, we found this seldom worked. I knew that mice traditionally liked cheese, so figured, why not make a sticky cocktail of peanut butter AND cheese. Works like a charm. I won't go into the gory details!

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Wednesday, May 16, 2007

Tact Tip of the Day

The old adage, "If you can't say something nice, don't say anything at all" is true. If someone asks, tell them, but if they don't ask for your negative opinion, just keep it to yourself.

Here are some real life examples of what not to say:
  • You don't exercise much?
  • What's up with your hair?...I don't like it.
  • I like your hair better the other way.
  • Do you have a cold? Is that why your nose is red?
  • there is something hanging from someone's face or clothing
  • mullets (they deserve what they get)
  • mustaches (ditto)

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Tuesday, May 15, 2007

Save Moo-lah Tip of the Day, Part 1

I recently received in my inbox a list of 50 things you can do to help take care of our world and save some money in the meantime. That email was titled "Going Green" although my husband would rather emphasize the fact that it saves you money, rather than worry about the possibility that he accidentally married a liberal. Some of the suggestions were easier than others. For example, I don't currently have $8500 for a solar water heater, even if it will pay for itself in six years. Sooo, that one's not likely to happen. My condensed list of "so easy it's stupid" things we can all be doing, will follow over the next few days.

1. Update your lighting
Make it a policy to buy energy efficient compact fluorescent light bulbs. You can now get a variety of shapes and perfectly match the color hue and lighting for each room. They look good and use at least two-thirds less power than regular lighting.

2. Wall Warts
Those clunky power adapters draw energy from the wall all the time. Unplug them individually or attach them to a power strip and turn off the whole switch when not in use. Around 75-percent of all electricity in a home comes from appliances that are turned off, but are still plugged in. Make sure that you only have those appliances plugged in where you're actually using the electricity. You will save on bills and we as a society will save on energy

3. Save Water
Place a water bottle filled with liquid or pennies into your toilet's water tank. This will cause the tank to use less water every time you flush. Plenty Magazine Managing Editor Deb Snoonian estimates it wil save you about a quart to half a gallon per flush. (Seriously - her name is "Snoonian?")

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Monday, May 14, 2007

McRunning Tip of the Day

Don't eat McDonald's and then try to run your longest run of the year. Even if its for an early lunch and you're not planning on running for another six hours. Just don't do it™.

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Saturday, May 12, 2007

Insurance Tip of the Day

This tip is special thanks to Chad at the Cre8tive Group, who didn't realize his helpful information would become a tip for the world to see!

You'd think that if you have a high-price item in your home or business that it would be covered, in almost any circumstance by your homeowner's insurance. But you may not realize that most insurance policies only cover individual personal items up to $1,000, often times close to your deductible. Of course, if your house burned down, flooded, or was otherwise destroyed, of course insurance would replace the home and the items inside. But, if someone broke in, stole that one item, and left, it would only be covered to $1,000, unless you have a separate type of insurance for the item.

So, Chad informed me that a type of insurance offered by most providers is a great solution. It's a type of insurance called inland marine insurance, which you can use to insure any piece of property at almost any value. The best part is that this insurance is cheap, and it covers the item inside or outside your home, and in almost any situation of damage, theft or destruction. It could be stolen, ran over by your car, rained on, thrown into a lake or dropped off a cliff. And the best part is, there's no deductible. You're insured for whatever amount you specified. The only scenarios in which inland marine insurance does not cover you are 1. intentional damage or destruction, or 2. if the item was being used in a felony.

But, this insurance is especially useful if the item will be rented to other people, traveling on delinquent airlines, or being shipped. Laptops, cameras, videocameras, jewelry, etc. would all be good candidates for this insurance.

State Farm offers inland marine, and for my HD videocamera, it was only $1.55 per $100 for a year. Well worth the peace of mind!

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Friday, May 11, 2007

Burger Tip of the Day

Those of us who live in the Lexington area have probably driven past that sketchy, yes this clown's name is Sketchy, place on the sketchy north side of town that totes "79 Cent Burgers and Shakes" in a 50s-esque sign. You know you've been curious as to whether or not it's any good. Well, our insiders have tested it, and we're proud to say it's actually a good burger! You probably now have two questions. First, what's it like? And second, how are they able to stay in business? The place is a little "trek back in time." You'll walk in and there will be two old yocals who have been sitting there since '53 when the place opened. They'll stare at you and wonder why you're in "these parts" and expect you to be wearing a varsity letter jacket for admission. You'll then notice a scary contraption, which leads me to answer two. You see, much like Ford discovering the assembly line to lower production costs on their vehicles, the "79 Cent Burger Shack" has learned a valuable lesson. They have a machine that's been churning out delicious burgers since the place opened in '53. I hear it's never shut down. I think it self-maintains itself with burger grease. At any rate, the burger patty is picked up from a pool of indigenous greasy water. It's then put on a metal-runged conveyor belt, and slides out a little chute (so disturbing, right?) that looks like a waterslide. It then passes through the top of the iron-clad beast to be kissed by flames shooting out the top, for a quick second. It then slides down the chute, soon to slide down your intestines.

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Thursday, May 10, 2007

DooDoo Tip of the Day

If you're shooting video at any place with the name "Horse Park" in it, chances are there are going to be not only horses, but dogs. And when you have lots of horses and dogs, there's bound to be a lot of dookie lying around. So, be careful and look before you sit.

Otherwise, you'll end up doing what I did and sit in s*it.

If you do happen to do this, don't immediately try to pull your pants around to survey the damage, or else you'll end up with it on your hands too, and have nowhere to wash them.

And then, you'll probably end up seeing someone you haven't seen in a long time, and awkwardly avoid shaking hands with them.

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Wednesday, May 09, 2007

Bee Tip of the Day

To quote Thor out of context, in reference to the term "Bladder Buster," , this tip "kinda makes me feel funny." Here is a tip about a few ways to learn from the mistakes of others in the art of bee keeping, and bee extermination. I think in a situation like this, it's best to call a professional!

You'll enjoy reading about this great tale of a couple guys getting a little too creative with bee-busting. (caution: language. caution: funniness.)

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Tuesday, May 08, 2007

Little Kid Tip of the Day

If your little kid neighbor attempts to pull you over when you pull into your driveway, and pretends to arrest you and tell you to go to jail, you don't really have to go. He's not really an officer of the law. But if you do want to play along, tell him you first get to make your one phone call. That'll give you enough time to get inside and he'll think you're playing along.

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Monday, May 07, 2007

TP Tip of the Day

According to Rosie, you can't use just one...sheet of toilet paper as Sheryl Crowe believes.

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Saturday, May 05, 2007

Derby Tip of the Weekend

We've developed a great strategy for betting at the races that guarantees you not swindling too much money, and benefiting those you care about. Oh, and not giving "the house" one penny. It's simple. You and your group of friends each decide to throw a set amount of money in a pot, and the person whose horse finishes closest to the top wins the pot. That way no one gambles away their life savings, and even if you lose, you know a good friend got your cash, and not Biggs Casino. And, you can probably con the day's "big winner" into buying everyone dinner or drinks afterward. :-)

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Friday, May 04, 2007

Submarine Tip of the Day VII

This is the last one; don't worry.

If you have purchased and worn your lead underwear from our previous tip, whatever you do, don't wear them in a situation where you might be given a wedgie, because chance are, a wedgie with a pair of lead underwear would not only REALLY hurt, it probably could also give you lead poisoning. Just food for thought.

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Thursday, May 03, 2007

Submarine Tip of the Day VI

Despite any urges you might have, do not EVER sing the song "Yellow Submarine" if you're a naval seaman. We're not positive, but you'll probably be flogged and thrown to the jellyfish. If you should sing the song, and get thrown to the jellyfish, we're told by expert sources that peeing on your jellyfish sting will help alleviate the swelling and stinging.

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Wednesday, May 02, 2007

Submarine Tip of the Day V

Or known as "Pimp my Sub." The industry of "sub pimping" is far under-developed. And why not have some pride in your ride? After all, it's a bunch of guys driving a sweet-A boat round the ocean! Since testosterone is at a fairly alarming rate, we recommend a few items to turn that hooptie sub into a "Shaggin' Waggin'." Well, maybe not a shaggin' waggin' due to the lack of ladeeez up in the crib. BTW, I love how they define "crib" as "domicile..." Anway, the first thing we'd recommend is your very own set of "bulls balls," or "bumpernuts" to hang on the propellor on the back of the sub. You know, the things that redneck men in Nicholasville love to put on their '82 F-250s to compensate? Yeah, those. Other things we'd recommend are dualies, chrome, a low-restriction air filter, and one of those dancing hula girls on the sub's dashboard. Wait, do subs have dashboards?

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Tuesday, May 01, 2007

Submarine Tip of the Day IV

If you're on a nuclear sub, even though they say you're not exposed to THAT much radiation, we'd still recommend wearing a pair of patented lead underwear. BTW, I'm glad this lead underwear vendor clearly states "no returns." You never can be too safe.™ I'd rather be mocked by my fellow seamen than have radiated...eh...you get the pun.

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