HOW TO TELL SOMEONE OFF
The Internet has killed a lot of things. Road atlases. The yellow pages. Blind dates. But maybe the most lamentable casualty is the tell-off. These days, if you want to give someone a piece of your mind, you text it or tweet it or Yelp it or post some passive-aggressive comment. It is faceless, anonymous… and totally unfulfilling. The whole point of the tell-off is seeing the stunned, speechless reaction it provokes. You are a reasonable person, sure, but you have your limits, and you are unwilling to accept it when those limits have been crossed.
It’s all in the delivery. You needn’t raise your voice or change your tone. The more measured and direct, the more powerful. In person, as in writing, a period is far more menacing than an exclamation point. “Get out of my face.” Not “Get out of my face!” In fact, there are times when you don’t need to say anything at all. Just a cold, hard glare that lingers for several excruciating seconds will do.
BOB LUTZ “Avoid debt. The only thing you should buy with the help of debt is a house, and you should never exceed three times your income to buy it.”
Lug nuts on the right side of the car Typical on older cars, the reverse threading is intended to counteract the initial inertia of the lug nut against the rotation of the wheels. (The wheel moves and, for a split second, the lug nut remains static, loosening by an imperceptible fraction of a turn.) It’s since been proven completely unnecessary.
Lawn mower blade If the blade spins to the right, it can slowly unwind itself each time the blade jerks to a start.
Toilet handle Every time you flush, the handle rotates against the threads to tighten instead of loosen the assembly.
Left bike pedals Using the pedal tightens instead of loosening it.
Propane tank This is more of a safety feature, so that flammable gases can be used only with the appropriate regulators.