Posted on December 23, 2009
iPhone/iPod touch: We thought RunPee was a clever site and iPhone app that picks dull movie moments for bathroom breaks. The iPhone app can now store your chosen movies for offline use, and quietly vibrate an alert at break times.
Those two updates were coded in response to user requests for actually using RunPee’s break moments during, you know, the actual movie. Pick a movie, set an alert and time buffer (1-5 minutes before the break), and RunPee will buzz you with a notification that, say, the scientist is explaining, so now’s your chance for relief. With the offline storage, RunPee also becomes a much more useful iPod touch app. Of course, there’s a joke in there somewhere about an app that vibrates when you really need a bathroom break, but we’re far too mature to make it.
The RunPee.com web site has also added support for more languages, and a non-Flash mobile site for scoping out key non-action points right before a flick. Finally, there’s a $1 Android app in the market, and other mobile apps are expected to come along soon. RunPee’s iPhone app costs 99 cents, requires an iPhone or iPod touch.
Posted on September 18, 2009
Towels would seem to be such a utilitarian object that they could never need any sort of optimization. As your towels age however, their absorbency decreases. Boost them back to their glory days with this simple hack.
Photo by evelynishere.
If you’re in the habit of using the amount of detergent recommended on the bottle, which is almost always way more than you need, and then hitting towels with fabric softener or dryer sheets you’re setting yourself up for towels that lose their absorbency and can even begin to stink.
That’s right, most of the time stinky towels aren’t a result of failing to wash your towels enough but using too much detergent and fabric softener. The short of it is this: more isn’t better and over time soap residue can accumulate within the fibers of the towels ensuring that not only do they fail to absorb as much water as they can but they also don’t dry as effectively as they should. When your towels seem to get a funky smell immediately upon getting wet again, failure to dry completely thanks to soap residue is usually the culprit.
What can you do? Saving your towels is as simple as running them through two hot loads. Skip the detergent on both loads, run them through once with hot water and a cup of vinegar and then again with hot water and a half cup of baking soda. Your goal, whether washing brand new towels or old towels, is to strip the softener and detergent reside from the fibers of the towel and get them as absorbent as possible.
Read the full guide at WikiHow for more information and if you have your own laundry tricks, let’s hear them in the comments.
Most of the clogs in your bathroom sink or bathtub don’t require the mess of a full length plumbing snake and if you’re an apartment dweller you’re certainly not going to give up precious space to store one.
Photo by mobilestreetlife.
What you need is a mini-snake, easily stored under the sink and handy for those annoying hair clogs. At the home-improvement site DoItYourself.com they share a handy trick for always making sure you’ve got a snake close at hand. You’ll need to stop by the hardware store and get a few feet of 1/8″ stainless-steel cable and you’ll need a pair of needle-noise pliers:
Step 1: Simply bend several individual wires (not strands) out in different directions from the center of the cable so that when rotated, the strands will snag hair in the clogged drain.
Step 2: Fish cable as you would a drain snake, twisting as you push gently to advance into and around elbows, etc.
Step 3: When you feel the clog, just twist the cable until you feel some resistance and withdraw slowly to extract hair.
Step 4: Repeat until the big wad comes out, maybe two or three times.
The DIY solution is much more effective than trying to reach a mat of hair with needle-nose pliers and much easier to store under the sink than an actual plumbing snake. If you have your own handy DIY home-plumbing solutions, let’s hear about them in the comments below.