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40oz

Life Hacks

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I'm a huge fan of the occasional "Life Hacks" threads that appear on 4chan every once in a blue moon. I've taken the liberty to make a thread about it here.

In this thread, we contribute facts, ideas, strategies, and other things that directly benefit yourselves. It can be but doesn't have to be at the expense of someone else. Things such as saving money, getting free stuff, looking good, feeling good, getting all the womenz, etc.

Here are some of mine:

1. Never buy text books before the first day of classes. All teachers have their own way of teaching. You may buy books that the teacher chooses not to use in class. Many stores have strict return policies and if you don't return your books soon enough you might not get refunds for them. Teachers will typically assign small sections of your books to read. Bookstores almost always have lounge chairs, just pick out the book and read the assigned section inside the store. No one will stop you and you can save big bucks on buying the books off the shelves instead.

2. Evading getting searched. If you get pulled over by a police officer, and he asks you if you have something in your car he should know about, welcome him to search your car before he asks and tell him you don't even have anything that you would be embarrassed of. Nine out of ten times (unless you are looking real shady and have doobies and beer cans lying around) he's not going to waste his and your time searching for stuff, even if you do have something you could be busted for.

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If you get a bad nosebleed and want it to stop within three minutes every time, do the following. Go to a toilet so you're in a convenient place to change tissues. Wad some toilet paper / tissue / whatever and hold it lightly underneath your nose. Do NOT plug your nose with the tissue. This will only create a clot inside your nose that's liable to break and start bleeding again sometime later. Instead, do the following. Lean your head forward so that the blood drains onto the tissue. While doing this, and this is the most important part, breathe through your nose. This allows the blood to dry as quickly as possible and allow the bleeding vessel to seal without a giant clot plugging up your nose. Keep replacing tissues as necessary until the blood stops running. This should only take a minute or two, even for severe nosebleeds. At this point you can clean up your face, the immediate inside of your nose, etc, and get back to whatever you were doing.

No, this hack doesn't work for your period. Sorry.

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Here's one that I've recently learned the hard way:

If you're a freshman/sophomore in college and you're trying to select a major, pick a variety of electives (Along with your GE courses, of course). Don't be an idiot and pick electives that are similar to your major. Expand your horizons. If you find an elective class that sounds even somewhat interesting to you, take it anyways. You never know if you'll end up liking that elective class enough to actually pursue it as a major. If not, you'll end up like me and be stuck with a major that you absolutely hate for the next 2 to 3 years...

Of course, there's the option of switching majors. However, that may be pretty difficult for some of you if your college won't allow you to switch majors after obtaining a certain number of units or if you don't have the money to pay for tuitions.

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Here's some shitposting tips from the useless post master.

If you're trying to shitpost, make sure it's on a topic that you have no idea about. Then use your best use of folk science and intuition to bullshit out a comment. It doesn't even have to contribute to the discussion. It purely fits in with the majority of ditto comments, and helps the shitpost evade censors.

Do not repost with a quote. It's lame and shows you're trying to argue a specific point in the previous post. . if you want, though, when quoting an image, replace the image with "STOP QUOTING IMAGES, DUMBASS" macro. do the mod's work for him.

When arguing with someone, Quickly google and learn as much about the other side's argument, and then spit it with your own spin, even if you don't agree with it. How can you commit logical fallacy when you didn't think? Troll 'em to the ground.

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Now for a serious post.

"Generic" Advisors are bullshit. Most Advisors in college are made to make you spend as long as possible in their University. Why you ask? Money, of course! They will usually waste your time picking electives and other courses you don't need for your major. Use an advisor qualified in the major you want. Pick what's required for your major and do it. have your own backup plan, though. Just never use a "general studies" or "undeclared" major Advisor. They are the worst.

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Lets see...

Never second guess your faith in someone. You're better off being hurt that someone betrayed your faith in them, then being hurt that you thought less of them.

Never shave your legs against the growth direction. Terrible Terrible skin damage will ensue for the next few days >_>

Always suck up to English teachers. Every one I've encountered has made it their goal to FUCK WITH MY HEAD during every single class. Just appease them, get your B+, and move on!

Can't think of any more... too tired... Night doomworld!

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Cheap Smokes
If you're a smoker, usually every major tobacco company will have a "mailing list" you can sign up for. They'll usually send you coupons every month, which lessens the expense of your horrible addiction. Sign up for two or three, and you'll have a coupon every time you go to buy cigarettes. Of course, the better advice is just quit smoking while you still can. I've saved hundreds of dollars doing this.

Moldy Bread
Frequently find mold growing on a loaf of bread you bought a couple weeks ago? Next time you buy a loaf, make it a habit to never stick your hands in the bag. Use your fingers from the outside of the bag to push out a few slices and plop them on a plate. Done this for two years and I've only had one load of bread grow mold (which only did so because I was testing this theory).

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eargosedown said:

Lets see...

Never second guess your faith in someone. You're better off being hurt that someone betrayed your faith in them, then being hurt that you thought less of them.

Never shave your legs against the growth direction. Terrible Terrible skin damage will ensue for the next few days >_>

Always suck up to English teachers. Every one I've encountered has made it their goal to FUCK WITH MY HEAD during every single class. Just appease them, get your B+, and move on!

Can't think of any more... too tired... Night doomworld!

What are you in high school?

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Use the freezer + microwave oven for everything.

Chocolate and sweet snacks stored in the freezer become just like ice cream.

After you buy bread, slice in and put it in the freezer. When you need some, just un-freeze the slices with the microwave oven: this way you can have "fresh bread" upward to 6 months. Ideal if you don't eat all that much/need to be stocked. You can freeze whole loafs, but then they are harder to cut in slices.

Don't throw away anything: even slightly stale/gummy bread and cold pasta can be "revived" with 30 seconds in the microwave, and be as good as new.

To dry dishes quickly without a bulky and energy hungry drier: just use s normal household fan to blow air on the dishes (placing them in one of those dish drying stands helps having the mos surface exposed). Usually, most dishes will be cupboard-dry within an hour, and the energy consumed by the fan will be negligible compared to a thermoelectrical drier.

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If you're finding your job too easy, "don't work harder, work smarter!". IE Work out ways of spending the maximum time looking busy whilst still doing the same amount of work. Though it depends on the job. I work in a lab washing things so it's fairly easy.

If that runs out, there's always "that one job" you've been putting off, do it! It probably won't be as bad as you think. Plus if it's in some isolated/hot/cold/smelly place you can take your time over it. I did some temp work at the place my mum works and was forever "sorting out" a stock cabinet in an unfrequented part of the lab. Mind you my mum reckoned the job was hard and that she never got any rest.

If you work in an office and also like writing stories, write them at work! It still looks like a load of text in a word processor to somebody in the distance.

Get a manual car (though clearly you play Doom and not "HURR NEWIST GRAFIX IS BETTERZ" games so you are already mature and civilised and would not lower yourself to an automatic, right?), drive everywhere in top gear. Also come out of gear and just roll down hills / up to red lights / whenever you see brake lights. It might not seem like much but my fuel economy seemed to shoot up! (Though don't just hold down the clutch).

I have a language learning course which is specifically designed to teach you as you drive... which would otherwise be "dead time". This got me thinking what other "dead time" i had which could be put to use, like ploughing through my ever-expanding ancient comic collection - why not read some at break times at work? What else would i do in them? Talk about mortgages and articles in The Ecomonist?

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40oz said:
2. Evading getting searched. If you get pulled over by a police officer, and he asks you if you have something in your car he should know about, welcome him to search your car before he asks and tell him you don't even have anything that you would be embarrassed of. Nine out of ten times (unless you are looking real shady and have doobies and beer cans lying around) he's not going to waste his and your time searching for stuff, even if you do have something you could be busted for. [/B]


No. This is acting suspiciously and definitely gets you caught.

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Avoid Chain Food Joints
McDonalds, Taco Bell, and Subway are obvious, but I'm also talking about places like Red Lobster and Outback. You'll be getting food made by minimum wage workers that was probably packaged in China then unfrozen and warmed up in a broiler or microwave. These places care more about making a buck than making quality food or treating their guests or employees with any sort of respect. It's even worse in the current economic situation.

Avoid Restaurants
Hell, the whole idea of a restaurant is pretty terrible too. The food is usually horribly overpriced, and the alcohol even doubly so (see the price for a glass of wine there? You can get an entire bottle of it for that much at Safeway). Also, the entire reason you need to tip your server is because they're probably making $2-3 UNDER minimum wage. Yes, it's legal and fucking restaurants love ABOVE ALL not having to pay anyone who works for them if at all possible.

Find Local Eateries
If you really need to grab something to eat, find a locally owned pizzaria/burger joint/sub shop/teriyaki place. Not only is the food quality superior, but you're supporting local businesses, which is always good.

Make Your Own Damn Food
Seriously, home cooking is king. Not only can you always make the food you want to eat, and just how you like it (especially when you get good at it), but it's TONS cheaper than either eating out or buying a bunch of frozen meals.

Don't think you're any good? Find a good beginner-level cookbook and just start with the basics for practice. I recommend the James Beard Cookbook. It starts with a recipe for boiling water and it goes from there, going though the basic dishes before listing off the more advanced recipes. Practice makes perfect.

Don't have the time to cook home meals? Think again! There are many recipes that take as much time and effort as tossing something in the microwave. Throw together an oven-toasted sandwich (I really recommend getting a topaster oven). Mix up some pancakes or scrambled eggs. Make a huge vat of something on your day off. I'd start with tomato pasta. Easiest recipe ever:

12 oz. Tomato sauce
6-12 oz. Tomato paste (depending on how thick you want it)
3 tablespoons of butter
3 bay leaves

Multiply this recipe by however much you want (or however much your biggest pot can hold) then add whatever ingredients if you want something a bit heartier. A can of diced tomatoes, a diced onion, or a roll of Italian sausage are good ideas, and I also recommend getting a blend of Italian seasoning to use in your cooking as well. Mix up this huge pot at the start of the week, and just boil up some pasta whenever you're hungry. This should last you 5-10 days at least.

Maes said:

Use the freezer + microwave oven for everything.

This is pretty terrible advice. Microwaves are pretty essential for reheating stuff (trust me, I went without one for about 6 months and had to use the stove for all my reheating...took forever and I lost a lot of food to being left in the pot every time I reheated it), but they generally sap the flavor from a lot of stuff, so should be avoided. Also, NEVER, EVER put bread in the microwave. The end result is the weirdest fucking texture you've ever tried to chew through. Bread in the fridge should last you a couple weeks easy. If you want to store it longer, use the freezer, but take it out and keep it in the fridge for a day or so and let it defrost naturally.

Lizardcommando said:

Here's one that I've recently learned the hard way:

If you're a freshman/sophomore in college and you're trying to select a major, pick a variety of electives (Along with your GE courses, of course). Don't be an idiot and pick electives that are similar to your major. Expand your horizons. If you find an elective class that sounds even somewhat interesting to you, take it anyways. You never know if you'll end up liking that elective class enough to actually pursue it as a major. If not, you'll end up like me and be stuck with a major that you absolutely hate for the next 2 to 3 years...

Awesome. This is actually my plan for college.

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40oz said:

2. Evading getting searched. If you get pulled over by a police officer, and he asks you if you have something in your car he should know about, welcome him to search your car before he asks and tell him you don't even have anything that you would be embarrassed of. Nine out of ten times (unless you are looking real shady and have doobies and beer cans lying around) he's not going to waste his and your time searching for stuff, even if you do have something you could be busted for.


They can't search your car anyways unless they have a warrant, so you can just say no.

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EarthQuake said:

Moldy Bread
Frequently find mold growing on a loaf of bread you bought a couple weeks ago? Next time you buy a loaf, make it a habit to never stick your hands in the bag. Use your fingers from the outside of the bag to push out a few slices and plop them on a plate. Done this for two years and I've only had one load of bread grow mold (which only did so because I was testing this theory).

That's disgusting. I wouldn't eat bread that's been out longer than 2 days regardless of its moldiness. This is only because I can't stand the texture.. it just gums up in the mouth and is hardly edible.

For years I've been keeping bread double-bagged in the freezer (and I freeze it as soon as I buy it, not when it starts to lose its freshness). Then when I take the slices out of the freezer the night before, they're fresh and fluffy every time, even after weeks of being in the freezer.

Danarchy said:

Also, NEVER, EVER put bread in the microwave. The end result is the weirdest fucking texture you've ever tried to chew through.

You're doing it wrong. Quite simply, you're overheating the bread causing it to dehydrate. Try using your microwave's low-power or defrost feature. In a 1200-watt microwave, I know that 2 slices of bread will defrost to room temperature in 50-60 seconds if you set the microwave to 30% of full power.

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Danarchy said:

Make Your Own Damn Food

This. It's probably the best advice ever. Also keep an eye on all discounts going on in grocery stores - if you have a freezer, buy some fish or meat when it's cheap, freeze, and prepare later! (just make sure they haven't been frozen already if possible) For example, here salmon can easily cost about 20 euros/kg, but just the other day I got a 700g piece at 9 euros/kg. And that's plenty for one person!

I don't get all this bread advice, but I guess that's because I favor the small local bakeries which don't pump their bread full of nasty preservatives. I once tried one particular loaf of bread from one huge bakery, and then a similar one from one small local bakery. The big factory bread was as good as new five days after buying it, while the other one was already slightly harder on the second day. I wouldn't touch a bread that stays fine so long if I had an option. Besides, the small bakeries' bread tastes so much better.

Then again, I eat plenty of bread: For breakfast, for evening snack, sometimes with dinner, etc. and I always buy only one kind at a time so it won't even have a chance of getting old.

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Csonicgo said:

Now for a serious post.

"Generic" Advisors are bullshit. Most Advisors in college are made to make you spend as long as possible in their University. Why you ask? Money, of course! They will usually waste your time picking electives and other courses you don't need for your major. Use an advisor qualified in the major you want. Pick what's required for your major and do it. have your own backup plan, though. Just never use a "general studies" or "undeclared" major Advisor. They are the worst.


Even subject specific "advisors" tend to suck. My advice: when entering a major look over the course requirements, and get a general plan of what courses you will take each year. Many colleges have electronic enrollment, where you can choose whatever classes you want, but some still require you to meet with an advisor to register (the school where I got my undergrad was this way). In such a situation, when the time comes to register for a semester look through the schedule and choose all of your courses, and just hand the list to the advisor. Don't let them change anything.

There is pressure on academic advisors to ensure that all courses offered in a term at a college are above an enrollment cutoff. Thus the vast majority of the time a suggestion outside of your required coursework IS NOT IN YOUR BEST INTEREST. Classes don't fill up for two reasons, either they are of interest to only a small audience or they are unreasonably difficult.

Anyway, other random college tips:

1. The course number does not correspond to course difficulty. As an undergrad I took 100 level courses that were far more challenging than 400 level courses. The general rule in course numbering is that low number courses are primarily based around rote memory, while higher number courses have more abstract conceptual content. In fact, the 100 and 200 level courses are often the most painful in a particular field. This is why taking "Fundamentals" courses as electives often backfires (I cringe when I think of all the non-majors who took "Biology of Cells" as their natural science elective when I was doing my undergrad).

2. Pre-requisites can often be ignored. Generally a course that has a pre-req will cover all of the nessecary material from the previous course in the first week or two of class. As a general rule of thumb, if the pre-req course has no pre-requisites itself you will probably be OK taking the higher course. However, if a pre-req has its own pre-reqs the higher level course would probably be overwhelming (as it would assume you grasp the most important concepts of the most basic coursework).

3. If you ever feel uncomfortable with a class, drop it (the earlier the better). Its almost impossible to catch up if you fall behind in a college course, and jackass teachers only get worse as the term drags on.

4. Get to know your professors. Professors who know you can give you excellent help (even if they aren't teaching the course you are studying), can give you opportunities such a research or independant study, and also make great references.

5. Independent Studies/Research are the best kept secret of college. They are an easy way to get credits, you generally get to work on a topic you are interested in, and they look awesome on a CV/Resume. Most professors love to work with students on independant work, as it makes them look good too.

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xepop said:

No. This is acting suspiciously and definitely gets you caught.


It worked 2 out of the 2 times it's happened to me.

bgraybr said:

They can't search your car anyways unless they have a warrant, so you can just say no.


They can just as easily hold you there until they get the authorization to do so though. It's best to lead them to believe that you're a good guy than to act like you know more about the law than they do. Be on the cop's good side.

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Green Arrows: This one might be common knowledge by now, but if (you live in the USA, and) you are trying to make a left turn at a traffic light, stop about one car length before the line. You will almost always get a green arrow and not have to wait for a gap in the midst of oncoming traffic to get through when the light turns green. I do this pretty often, sometimes it saves me from being late for work.

Follow Emergency Vehicles: they have a device that can trip traffic lights into being green, and usually travel fast anyway. By law, cars in front of emergency vehicles have to pull over, but tailing behind it can usually get you through a main road without having to deal with rush hour traffic and a bunch of traffic lights.

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40oz said:

It's best to lead them to believe that you're a good guy than to act like you know more about the law than they do.

Indeed. As a friend of mine who used to be a cop said: people who know about the law are usually people who need to know about the law. ie they have probably already been in trouble with the cops and are therefore worth investigating. Either that, or they are smug and annoying and therefore worth investigating if for nothing other than to put a bit of a dent in their day.

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40oz said:

I do this pretty often, sometimes it saves me from being late for work.

Protip: Leave for work earlier. Works every time.

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40oz said:

It worked 2 out of the 2 times it's happened to me.


Then simple "No, I don't have" would've done the job, too. The difference is when that cop really wants to search your car he will get there no matter what you whine about your rights. If you act suspiciously like that they know you might have something hidden and search every goddamn inch. If you act like normal and answer when they ask they'll just do their routine check. If the cop isn't interested in searching then it doesn't really matter what you say.

At least this makes most sense to me, but I don't live in states so I don't have any experience.

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I've found that while school is all well and good, actual work experience is a million times better (especially so for engineering degrees). Push to get an internship, early. Often the internship can lead you into a full time job with that company. If not, the experience makes you look much better than your fellow classmates who do not have experience - even if their grades are better.

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Regarding washing dishes: sometimes warm water and ordinary dish soap just won't cut it. For those cases where you need extra bang (e.g. molten and then dried lamb grease on plastic containers, which stains like heavy-duty grease and leaves a permanent smell behind) consider using stronger stuff like floor and general purpose cleaning products.

I've successfully used chlorine and floor cleaner with extremely hard dishes: chlorine works wonders for smelly and greasy residues such as lamb and salmon, leaving everything squeaky clean. Floor cleaning products are usually more powerful than dish soap, and produce less foam. If you have access to machine dishwashing soaps/liquid, use that: they are way more powerful than handwashing soaps.

Just beware, use rubber gloves when washing dishes with that stuff, and rinse very well afterwards !!!

Also, if you worked on greasy machinery, you can clean your hands quickly with a fistful of machine washing powder: just moist it, and you can feel the power just from it warming up in your hand, and melting away the grease like nothing.

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40oz said:

Be on the cop's good side.


Whle my information source is a fat comedian, so his true stories are probally made up, but I guess this can also be achived by making the cop laugh, Like play COPS tune.

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xepop said:

Then simple "No, I don't have" would've done the job


When police pull you over, they will give you a reason why, but it's not always the exact reason. I know this because every time I've ever been pulled over, it was for a bogus reason. I was pulled over twice because I was told my taillight was out. I was also pulled over once because my car was past its inspection. I checked for these things shortly after the situation and found that none of these statements were true. Police are always aware of opportunities to get you in trouble for things that have nothing to do with the initial interaction. Just saying "No I don't have anything" could work but that doesn't make you appear less suspicious than if you were to demonstrate confidence in that you are not a bad dude by telling him he is welcome to search your car if he thinks the situation calls for it. It makes you sound more mature and responsible.

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40oz said:

Nine out of ten times ... he's not going to waste his and your time searching for stuff

40oz said:

It worked 2 out of the 2 times it's happened to me.

Fail.

Also, why would any innocent person tell a cop out of the blue that he's welcome to search the car? Any cop with half a brain cell would see this as suspicious.

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