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  • Michael Krakovskiy 3:08 am on October 2, 2008 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: Chewing gum, , potato chips, Roller skates,   

    Imaginative Inventions: The Who, What, Where, When, and Why of Roller Skates, Potato Chips, Marbles, and Pie (and More!) 

    Have you ever wondered how chewing gum was invented? Or who made the first roller skates? Or why there are piggy banks rather than doggy banks? Imaginative Inventions answers all of these questions and tells the fascinating stories behind these, as well as potato chips, eyeglasses, doughnuts, high-heeled shoes, the wheelbarrow, marbles, the vacuum cleaner, animal crackers, and more. Written in verse and with illustrations full of offbeat characters and quirky details, this book invites young readers inside the minds of great inventors and encourages them to think imaginatively.

     
  • Michael Krakovskiy 10:29 pm on January 9, 2003 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: Chewing gum, citrus oil, , , Goo, GUM, Gums, ,   

    WML: How To Remove Gum From Stuff or Goo Gone Guy – the Real Magic American ™ Hero. 

    A few days ago I was very sleepy in the morning and sat right into a huge wad of gum that some asshole left in the middle of a train seat. The monstrous stinking blue glob firmly attached itself to my favorite Politburo coat. It was probably a couple of packs of Extra. I did not notice it until some guy pointed it out to me in a grocery where I was ordering some fried eggs for breakfast. Interestingly, he was the only person to mention that to me the whole day even though I was walking with a huge blue blotch on my ass the entire day.

    In any case, chances are pretty high, that when you ask somebody (even google) about removing gum, you will get a lot of stupid answers, the first one usually being “freeze it with ice”. You know, I am pretty sure that all those clowns have never tried removing gum with their methods.

    The first page stupidly recommends:
    freezing it
    egg whites
    peanut butter
    lemon juice
    vinegar
    WD 40
    mayonnaise

    The result of these remedies highly resembles what happed in this Simpsons episode.

    You know, when I worked as a porter in an apartment building, at some point I was tasked with removing gum from the sidewalk. My boss ordered a special spray (very similar to “canned air” spray used for dusting off electronics.The spray would freeze the gum, at which point it was supposed to become brittle and fall off. No such luck. The modern formula allows the gum to stay stuck even when frozen. And the spray achieved temperatures much lower than the temperature of ice.

    I’ve seen special crews with steam blasters cleaning gum off sidewalks of the Rockefeller Center. But even with high pressure steam they have to spend about five-ten minutes per piece of gum.

    In any case, the solution to my problem is very simple. There is a product that really works on gum. It’s called “Goo Gone StickerLifter ®”. It consists of petroleum naphtha (aka n-hexane ) and citrus oil. You see, it turns out that n-hexane dissolves most dry adhesives like there is no tomorrow. It’s not very smelly and not very toxic. And it dissolves in warm water + soap.

    Removing gum, dry glue and stickers is a pleasure with it. I took out the whole gum stain in a couple of minutes. I don’t know if “the enjoyment of this experience was “better than sex.” “, but the Goo Gone Guy might disagree.

    “Never fear, Retailer Man is here!”
    “Holy profit margin! It’s a truck load of Goo Gone!”
    “Oh, Goo Goone Guy you are a real Magic American ™ hero.”

    They don’t mention n-Hexane, but the Retailer Man is right about the profit margin though :)

     
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