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Episode One: The Phanton Menace
by Marc S.A. Glasgow, aka The CyberPoet®
Dated Picture of the Author.

Hi and welcome to the writing of Marc S.A. Glasgow, more well known as 'The CyberPoet' (and the original one at that, with many imitators -- unless someone can document they came up with that name prior to 1979).

This is the first article I am writing at the behest of an old friend, who came to me and said write something -- I don't care what you write about, how long it is, whether it's intelligible or not, whether itís crude, profane, inane or just stupid. Just write something.

After much soul searching -- almost a complete 42 seconds of uninterrupted soul searching (well, except for the 30 second break) -- I decided to write about what I had always wished someone else had told me along the path of life -- you know, smart things, simple things, better ways to do things, things that I had the misfortune usually to learn the hard way at some time or other. And, to help keep it light and fresh, I'll throw in some addendum's occasionally.

Episode One: The Phantom Menace

(sorry, George, the title was too good not to swipe)
A poem I learned years ago as a sobriety test leads off...
The Antiseptic Baby and the Prophylactic Pup
The antiseptic baby and the prophylactic pup
were playing in the garden when the bunny gambled up,
they look upon the creature with a loathing undisguised...
It was disinfected and it wasn't sterilized!
they said it was a microbe and a hot bed of disease,
They sterilized in a vapor of a thousand odd degrees;
they washed it in permanganate with carbonated soap.
and froze it in a freezer as cold as banished hope...
Then they donned their rubber mittens and took it by the hand,
and elected it a member of their fumigated band.
There's not one micro-carcass in the garden where they play,
because they spray it with pure iodiferm a dozen times each day,
and each imbibes it's rations from a hydranic cup...
The bunny, the antiseptic baby and the prophylactic pup.
OK, maybe you figured it out already. It's all about microbes and germs and bacteria and viruses and other things that seem to love to live in your body without your express permission.
The premise is simple. I haven't been properly sick in several years. Before that I was sick all the time. A few things changed and since then I have managed to avoid the Asian/Hong Kong/German/American/Bolivian/Tibetian flu, the common cold, the uncommon cold, and general nastiness of all sorts. Like I said, a few things changed. Here's the list of them:
  1. I started adding a cup of chlorine bleach to the dishwasher when I ran the dishes.
  2. I started washing my hands with a presurgical scrub (Hybiklens) after loading the dishwasher, before cooking, after emptying the cat's litter -- so about 2, 3 times a day, and washed with a orange hand cleaner containing nonoxyl-9 and nonoxyl-5 after working on greasy, messy projects (like under the hood of my cars).
That's pretty much it. Gee, expected it to be tougher, eh?
Well, its slightly more complicated. Most people don't wash their hands properly, or long enough for that matter. Figure your hand-wash time should be 1 to 3 minutes -- long enough for the soap your using to start getting tacky on your skin. And you should make sure you get between your fingers, around each finger, down the sides of your hands and at least an inch of your wrists. That really it now.
Getting Off Easy
Ever wonder why cooks on virtually every cooking show and in every restaurant use stainless pots & pans, and pyrex glassware? Because both stainless steel and glass can be cleaned with easy-off (yes, the oven cleaner) when stuff is burnt, baked, caked on. Just spray the easy-off directly on the cooking surface, turn the oven to itís lowest setting (200 degrees on most ovens) and shove it in there for 5 minutes. When it comes out, rinse under hot water and shove it in the dishwasher like usual.
Graphite Up the Nuts
Next time you go to change your tire (or having the garage do anything where your tires come off), take some graphite in a spray can (available at any hardware store) and spray the inside of each lug nut when it's off the car. If you do this each time someone takes the wheels off, you should never end up breaking a bolt off when trying to remove the lug nuts. If the wheels on your car have a center hole that mounts over a center hub (BMW 318i comes to mind), put some lithium grease on the outside of the center hub when the wheel is off -- it will keep the wheel from rusting to the hub over time.
Whipping Out Your Custom Tool
If you're working on your car and you come up against a part that requires a specialty tool to remove/install, call your local auto parts store. Many have loaner tools free of charge (deposit required), including Discount Auto Parts.
Universal Stupidity
"Two things are infinite: the universe and human stupidity; and I'm not even sure about the universe"
-- Albert Einstein
Cooling Off Your Hottie
Keeping your fridge more than 4 inches away from the wall, so air circulates behind it can save you a couple kilowatt hours a month on your electric bill.
"Money can't you happiness, but it sure can keep you from being truly miserable."
The Pace of Evolution
Thursday I spotted just how intense the technology revolution is... I saw blank recordable CDís at my local grocery store (Publix).
Tune in next time for more Infinite WizDom from The CyberPoet®
Copyrighted Material.
© 2000,  Marc S.A. Glasgow, aka The CyberPoet® 
All rights reserved under U.S. and international law.

Marc Glasgow is a Macintosh Consultant serving the Tampa Bay area since 1990.
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