Monday, November 26, 2018

I Can See Clearly Now: Defogging Your Windshield

Foggy Windshield, AhmadElq

With the Northern Hemisphere heading into winter, we’re all soon be plagued by the interior fogging of car windows.

Decades ago, I heard Tom and Ray Magliozzi divulge the secret on Car Talk.

It’s unbelievably easy.
  1. Turn on air conditioning. (Yes, even in the winter.)
  2. Set blower to windshield.
  3. Set air intake to fresh air input instead of recirculating.
  4. Set temperature between cold and hot (neutral? tepid?).
Your foggy windshield will begin clearing up immediately if the settings are right. Once it clears, you can set your car’s temperature and blowers however you like.

If it resumes fogging up, you still have too much humidity in your car. Return it to the settings above as needed. Sometimes things like a hot box of pizza or a lot of people in the car can generate bonus fog.

Your kids will be sure to tell you that you’re doing it all wrong when you reach for the AC. Take the teachable moment and save your future self some time driver’s education time.  Plus, knowing will make them safer even if they're not the driver.
Stay safe! Don't forget to return your ice scraper and other winter gear to your car.

***Baby Toolkit is a compendium of randomness broadcasts from a chaotic suburban home located somewhere between the Bible belt and the Rust Belt in the great Fly-over. We are Amazon affiliates, so a small portion of purchases made through our Amazon links contribute to our general upkeep. Thanks for reading even the small print!

Sunday, November 25, 2018

Hello World 2.0

When I read Asha’s call for a return to commonplace blogging, it was like the voice in my head had found an external locus.  The desire for that written conversation among friends never really left me.

When Google Reader shuttered in 2013, I cast about for a replacement. Most of my friends turned to Facebook as a feed aggregator and blog substitute, but that wasn’t for me.  I’d purposefully left FB in 2010 after recognizing that it was a platform that just was not healthy for me.

Apple II c monitor showing Hello World program in BASIC.
Image by Bill Bradford (mrbill), Creative Commons, (c) 2006
 some rights reserved.

Back in 2013, Rogue was a toddler with extra medical stuff going on.  I was generally overwhelmed just keeping up with household stuff, so writing became a few letters to friends and snark on Twitter.  Writing on paper was a welcome relief because I could write without self-editing as much knowing the single reader for whom it was intended.  And I could discuss things that would never have made it to the blog.

So it’s 2018, and I’m digging out of a long funk.  My iron levels have been declining for years, and motivation was hard to find.  Even assembling words to express myself had become difficult.

This August, I had a endometrial ablation (Minerva) because I could no longer fight the everyday exhaustion and meet life commitments.  Things seem to be back on course as my skin tone regains its color and I no longer wake every day cursing the morning and the day’s demands.

I am still working up the courage (and the hemoglobin) to resume blood donation.  This will be the real moment where I know if the procedure helped.  If I go in too soon, and get turned away yet again for low iron, I may need someone to drive me home because I’m sure I will break down.

I still don’t have a good feed aggregator, but I’m sure there has to be something wonderful that’s popped up in the past five years, right?  Google Plus, you say?  No, seriously, help a girl out with some recommendations.

My wonderful friend (and mentor) Ray Otus recently did a Plundergrounds podcast episode on Imposter Syndrome and how it can derail creative pursuits.  Listening to the episode motivated me to commit more to the creative inquiries that feed my life. (Plundergrounds is mostly a Role Playing Game podcast and zine, but this episode is for everyone.)

So, hello world. I’ve missed you.  Let’s see where this goes.

***Baby Toolkit is the ongoing pursuit of a Midwestern geek exploring the universe one quagmire at a time.  I'm an Amazon affiliate, so if you click on an Amazon link chances are high that I'm getting a tiny percentage of any resulting sales.  Thanks for reading, friends!