How to Save a Drowning Kindle

Few things in life are more delicious than, after a stressful day/week/month/year, drawing a hot bath, pouring a glass of seltzer water on ice, grabbing your Kindle (or other, inferior e-reader device), and settling in for a relaxing soak of the tub.

Until that relaxing soak turns deadly. Your across-the-tub caddy fails, dumping everything good in your life into the piping hot bath water. When this happens, you grab for the Kindle first, realizing after there probably was a risk of electrocution, but whatever.

Once on dry land, your Kindle will still be full of water. If your Kindle is under warranty, now is the time to play coroner and call the time of death. If it’s not under warranty, prepare for CPR.


Cry. Cry like a baby. Bawl your eyes out. You were already stressed to start out with, and now you have to deal with this. So let it all go. You’re not just crying over your water-logged literature; you’re crying over all the stuff you didn’t cry over earlier.


Pry. Pry off the back plastic piece of your Kindle very carefully, using something like the weird nail file/curvy thing that’s attached to your fingernail clippers. Be careful to not scratch the plastic to all hell because there’s a chance your Kindle will be alive after this trauma. And as with people who’ve been in traumatic, injurious accidents, doctors don’t want to make them any worse. Be a good doctor. Who are we kidding? Be a good nurse. Nurses do all the work anyway.


Rice. If the back of your Kindle is open, do not shove your device straight into the rice. You’ll gunk up the motherboard and other shiny things and wires in it. No, instead, get a flat baking dish or even a cookie sheet, and line that puppy with rice. Then, lay a thing piece of fabric over top of that — something cotton, or a very thin, non-terry towel. Your Kindle goes on that, motherboard down, for two days. Do not power on. Do not touch. Do not even look at. Your patient needs rest.

(If your Kindle is under warranty, you can shove the whole thing in a bag of rice, leaving the back on, to see if it’ll survive. A warranteed Kindle is a surgery-free Kindle.)

The odds are not good in this situation.

But, if you’re lucky, you won’t have to send Amazon hundreds of dollars for a replacement, and your Kindle will, like magic, turn on its home screen after a while and be like, “Hey, I’m alive. Read me.” And you can. And you will. I hope that’s how your story ends.

The Sound Life’s Kindle survived an attempted drowning with no cosmetic damage, but the Bathtub Warrior thinks a little slower than before. This humorous (I hope it is anyway) blog post is not intended to be sound advice on what to do in a situation in which an electronic device meets water. Water and electricity do not mix. Rescue your wet electronic devices at your own risk. Use good, solid judgment. And may the odds be ever in your favor, or something.


Family Jewels

For the last nine months or so, my jewelry has been shoved in a dresser drawer, taking up valuable real estate for my t-shirts and pajamas. My necklaces also have become tangled messes, rendered unwearable, especially when I’m in a rush-out-the-door situation.

Thank goodness my hubby is handy, because I wouldn’t have been able to solve the problem without him. He helped me create this shadowbox with hooks and crown molding to hang to store my jewelry.

There’s a mesh basket on top that holds all my earrings in the mesh, and all my bracelets are stowed in it. It was easy to make (just make a frame and miter the edges of the molding). We used wood glue and small nails to hold everything together. The secret to get the paint super smooth is to put it on in very thin coats using a foam brush. We used a Behr interior eggshell-finish paint called “True Turquoise.”

Best of all, I was able to regain a drawer, and maintain sanity when choosing jewelry in the mornings. The new box is so fancy, my H&M and Forever 21 jewels barely deserve to hang out in there!

If you aren’t a carpenter, you can use an old desk or dresser drawer to give your jewelry box a vintage look. Just screw in hooks and mount it to the wall, making sure you’re attaching it to studs. You can also use a wooden tray to the same effect! If you don’t have a lot of jewelry, you can remove the glass from a picture frame and screw hooks into the frame to display your jewelry as art.

Have you been crafting anything lately?

How to not be a jagweed on public transportation

Gather ’round, children, and heed my advice.

Whether you’re a New Yorker, so Bridge and Tunnel or a tourist, it’s clear to me you all need to hear this.

Here’s “The Sound Life’s Guide to Not Being A Jagweed on Public Transportation.”

Now, I’m not an expert at this, and I’m ┬ánot better than anyone else, and I don’t have a huge ego. However, I am one of millions of frustrated masses traveling through Manhattan every day who is only a handful of brain synapses away from yelling/screaming/throwing my hands up in anger.

Check ’em out:

  • Stop effing running to catch a train, particularly the S. You’re going to kill someone, or at least seriously maim them, and there will definitely, definitely be another train. Don’t shove to get past someone very clearly going the same direction as you. Are you more important? No? Well, that’s the kind of thing you’re exuding when you shove someone out of your way so you can step onto a subway train a split second before. Just chill out. You’ll be a happier commuter. Trust me.
  • The subway train is not your sofa/bed/futon/floor/personal living quarters. Please take up only your allotted real estate. I don’t care how much stuff you’re schlepping around. Consolidate it, hold some on your lap, etc. It doesn’t go in the seat beside you, on the floor across the aisle from you, etc. And if you can’t sit upright on the subway seat and either take up multiple seats or stretch your legs completely across the subway car, I question whether you’re ready to be out in public that day at all.
  • Silence your damn phone. Turn down your music’s volume. Wear headphones. No one wants to hear your phone ring-ping-ding or play some awful song. No one wants to be able to identify whether you’re listening to pre-Yeezus Kanye and certainly no one wants to hear you have a conversation with your Ma/Baby Mama/BFF/frenemy about your colonoscopy/drama/poop habits.
  • Move. To. The. Middle. Of. The. Damn. Subway. Car. No one can get into the car if all passengers are gathered around the doors, but the middle of the car is empty. Spread out. Enjoy having your own space for once.
  • Stand up, youths. Let your elders sit. No excuses.
  • Use your inside voices to talk to your travel companions. No one else on the train cares about how drunk you got last night/what stupid outfit Joan was wearing or how kinky your latest sexual encounter was. We also don’t need to listen to you tell your friend how pretty you are. Keep your voice down. Air your dirty laundry at home, probably in the window that faces the street.
  • PDA. Captive audience. Just stop it.
  • Walk down the platform. Don’t gather at the base of the stairs on the platform (or the top of the stairs at street level). Please step out of line of heavy foot traffic if you need to check your phone, get your bearings, etc. We promise, the subway signage won’t be far away.
  • Consider batheing. Alternatively, consider wearing slightly less perfume. We ride in tin cans. Everyone can smell you.
  • Everyone is human. Treat each other with respect. You don’t like it when someone yells in your ear or grabs up on you in the train car? Don’t do those things back.

Don’t like my advice? Read the MTA’s.

What do you wish people would do on public transportation?