Why Didn't Someone Tell Me I Was Doing It Wrong?


I’ve developed a new technique recently. Instead of breaking it under the stem (and peeling it apart like a flower as per usual), I put the palm of my hand about 2 inches down from the stem on convex side of the banana, push back the stem with my other hand and the banana’s back splits open. Then I widen the tear and just pull the whole banana straight out. It has the advantage of almost never pulling out the stringy veins.


Well, um, I don’t know what to tell you then.

I’m very bad at ironing in that it takes me forever, because I also put off learning how for a long time. I assume I’ll just get better if I keep doing it. But it’s not actually difficult. I usually refer back to this: https://www.artofmanliness.com/articles/how-to-iron-shirt/

Wrinkle-free definitely helps. I don’t know what brands to point you to, I just started buying most of my shirts from Banana Republic because I found the cut and size I like so now it’s hassle free to just watch for sales and order online because I know almost exactly how everything will fit.

In my experience, I can wear wrinkle-free button down shirts several times and look more than presentable for work, wash them, hang them up, and repeat without ironing most times. The exceptions to this are if I don’t hang them up right out of the dryer, or if I wear a shirt with the sleeves rolled up (and then unroll them for the next time I wear it).

I’ll still iron everything if I’m dressing up for something more formal, but wrinkle-free is good enough for business casual.


But I’d be so terrified of germy things like salmonella or botulism. I wash my hands after feeding the cats in case their food has issues, and we wash our door-handles and light switches after doing any work outside. So very conscious of cross-contamination. I wash my current ceramic coated pans in scalding hot water. How is it cast iron cookware can do OK?


Germy things like salmonella or botulism need a good undisturbed and warm pool of moist, dank filth to germinate in. Your cast iron pan, if you don’t put it away entirely filthy will be fine.

Besides, cooking murders all the germs that are thinking about moving in quite completely. That’s the idea of cooking. So scrubbing down with cold, clean water or even sand (that’s how they do it in Africa!) should do you fine.


No starch. Starch will make things crisp and pressed looking, but will also wrinkle and hold them fairly quickly. (It reduces the life of your shirt too, but that’s a side item.) Starch can help to hold creases on fabric over time, if you are looking for that (i.e. pants.) I got away with using starch in the military, but my shirts needed to have and hold military creases. Hopefully yours don’t need anything nearly as stringent.

If it is the backs of your shirts wrinkling, try a work chair that doesn’t grab and hold your shirt as much. Something with a slicker back that allows your shirt to relax and fall back into place on occasions when you lean forward a bit.

Hang your shirts after you wear them, even if you’re going to take them back to the cleaners. Some fabrics are prone to hold wrinkles over time, just like they do creases from being pressed. Don’t wrinkle your shirts by balling them up and thinking dry cleaning will make everything okay. Don’t wear them all day either. Work in them, take them off, and put on casual wear afterward.

But most importantly, change up the fabrics you buy for shirts. 100% cotton is usually the culprit for wrinkle problems. Mix it up a little.


So I’m 66 years old and have been writing the numeral “5” wrong all my life. You’re supposed to write the lower part of the numeral, pick up your pen(cil) and then write the horizontal bar. But I write the horizontal bar right to left and, without picking up my pen(cil), write the rest of the numeral. I can’t say that it’s ruined my life.


Just FYI: Botulism is a toxin generated by microbes. It’s not alive. Cooking doesn’t denature it. That said, a wiped down cast-iron skillet is probably pretty safe.


Weird, I do the horizontal bar (left to right) then pick up my pencil and throw it away because my hand writing is the worst, and everything is better using spread sheets!


That’s how I was taught to do it. Since we’re the same age I’ll blame it on the schools.


100% polyester is the secret to this and many other problems in the world.


Linen shirts.
They are super comfortable, and it doesn’t matter if they are wrinkled.


Do you wash your grill, too?

I won’t say that I never clean my cast iron, but when I do I use this. It’s cheap, effective, and will last forever (not unlike cast iron pans), so I highly recommend getting one if you want to get into cast iron cooking. You can even use it on stainless steel and glass cookware and throw it in the dishwasher if you need to.


The very best solution to peeling a banana. Pick up the banana, holding it firmly in the left palm. Open the garbage can. Toss the banana in. Close the can. Go find something not disgusting to eat.


I knew I liked you for a reason, Rich


You lot can join the “I hate bananas because I’m a barbarian club”. My sister is a lifelong member. Fortunately I have more refined tastes and generally eat 2-3 a day. Having said that, the Cavendish bananas that are ubiquitous aren’t anywhere near the tastiest bananas. As usual society selects for the mediocre. Ladyfingers, pisang raja and apple bananas are all orders of magnitude tastier. I’ve converted at least one former member of the aforementioned club to them. Quite an achievement.


Where do you get these bananas? I never see anything but Cavendish (and, at the risk of invoking the wrath of Penblade, I like Cavendish just fine).


I had an apple banana at a friend’s place in California years ago, very sweet and delicious. No idea where she got them from. Googling suggests they’re popular in Hawaii. In Australia most stores stock 90% Cavendish but usually a small bundle of Ladyfinger which I try and grab before they’re gone. I regularly have pisang raja when I go to Asia, but I’ve not seen them here, more’s the pity.


Guess I’ll just have to keep my eyes open.


Nah, screw that noise, keep your eyes shut. Pretend you’re Daredevil.


How do you use it?