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Wednesday, December 1, 2010


furry bowling ball

More than a month ago I got one of those FW emails that was a list of nifty things to do with car glass. The first one I tested was cleaning the inside of the windshield with shaving cream. A chemical in the cream inhibits frost, meaning the inside of the glass won't be frosted on winter mornings. Today the inside of the glass was all ice. It wasn't just frost, it was ice. I'll be cleaning that off with windex right away. Washing the glass with shaving cream also makes glare from other headlights pretty bad. One of the tips recommended putting car wax on headlights to keep them from icing over. I know about wax that it makes the headlights glare to oncoming cars. One of the first things I learned as a kid washing cars, don't put wax on the headlights because it makes them glare. I never tested it, so I really don't know. But that was the car washing lore in the 50s.

All these nifty tips were explained by chemistry. I'm not going to test any more. The windshield one got me so bad it was like a computer virus. Something somebody thought up to screw up whoever might try it. Perhaps the chemical properties are sound and there is something to it, but what kind of shaving cream do you use? That was my first suspicion, it didn't specify which kind. I used Barbasol original, figuring that was about as basic as shaving cream gets without lotions and scents and one thing and another involved in its chemistry. It didn't work. I feel like a bozo for trying it, but I was using the scientific method. Try it and see if it works. Scientific method says it doesn't work, though by scientific theory evidently it works. Whatever. Before I night drive Friday I'll clean that mess off the glass. It also has a way of turning into a white film after a few days that requires wiping off with paper towel regularly.

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