29 September 2006

Keychain hacks

From Melissa of Suburban Bliss and Melissa's Buzz Off, just in time for carpool season:

Charlene at Crazed Parent offers a Sharpie keychain (for quick labeling of anything she needs) and a clip for her keys she can snap onto her pants while at the park.

My husband uses the clip but just to take the key fob for the car off, he then leaves his entire keychain in the glove box and carries only the door lock fob in his pocket.

Ironically, he learned this from the young people he works with who are too cool to carry their keys at the bar. But it works for parents too.

Those young people do the darndest things!

I swear by the keychain clip. I carry my keys on a big-ass carabiner (the kind used for rock climbing), which I can clip onto or hang off of anything. Overkill? Perhaps. Certainly not stylish, although outdoor-chic works here in Portland. I keep my keys clipped to the outside of my bag so I can open car doors without having to fumble in my purse (I too have a keyless-entry key fob). Especially welcome on rainy days.

Tangent: why are those little electronic dingles called fobs?

Regarding the Sharpie keychain: very cool, but it would be just my luck that the cap would come loose inside my purse.



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You really want to know? The word originally meant the little pocket (German "fuppe") men would have in the front of their waistcoats for a pocket watch. Since the point of an expensive pocket watch was to show off that you could afford it, men started getting these little ornaments that would hang on the outside of the pocket. (Why wear a Rolex if no one can see it?) The word eventually was separated from the original meaning of the pocket and became attached to the dangly ornament; from there, it leapt (so to speak) onto keychains.

Sorry... but you did ask!

Fob probably comes from the Lower German word fobke, which means "pocket".

I was writing my comment, so I didn't see Graham's. "Fuppe" also means "pocket", but fuppe is High German. The Low German word "fobke" is closer in pronunciation, but either is acceptable, I guess.

I found something that honestly gets rid of Sharpie stains - a product called Amodex. My daughter drew on her new Hanna Andersson dress, and Amodex got the stain out. It's slightly labor-intensive to use, but if the ink is on something you care about, you can most likely get it out. Oh, and I learned - don't wet a stain!

Graham and Stu: I honestly wanted to know. Thank you for elucidating.

As for leaving the keys in the car, and carrying only the fob: I'd be careful with trying this trick anywhere that you're not 100% sure that your car is safe. My car was recently broken into, and while all they got was my crappy stereo, I'd imagine things would've turned out quite differently had they found a full set of keys in the glove box.

Actaully you shouldn't carry around a bunch of stuff on you car keychain. It can damage your ignition switch.


The sharpie caps don't really come off the marker - I had trouble with the chain cap coming off the marker cap.

Another thing that will get Sharpie marks off is good old fashioned hairspray. Works on ballpoint pen too!

Ha, the cap in the purse is the first thing I thought of too!

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