public service announcement

February 12, 2008

My upstairs neighbors have learned the hard way what I learned (also the hard way) a couple of years ago:

If you use your car key to chip ice and snow off your car and then stick it in your ignition, the moisture on the car key will leave moisture in the ignition, which will eventually freeze solid.  And just in case you don’t fully have this picture yet, spending time in sub-zero temperatures getting a frozen ignition unfrozen is, like, totally a fun time.



  1. You never had this problem in Chicago?

  2. I did. Two years ago. That’s how I learned it the hard way. Keys and Wet. Bad Combination.

  3. Perhaps not “fun” per se, but…

    You can’t beat the “late for class” excuse of: “I was thawing out Bossy…”

  4. BL called to-day from rural New Hampshire where they have had so far this winter 80 inches of snow, a feat not duplicated since 1888. Temperature near his house was 20 degrees in middle of the day. He told me it was breathtakingly beautiful and when pressed I said that was the way I felt looking at the view of the bay leading into the Pacific ocean here where the temperature was 72 degrees and not even a quarter inch of snow to share with him.

  5. I do have to say that, being the practical creature I am, it would not occur to me to use my car key to chip anything off my car. Remember one Christmas when you were in college we gave you the ultimate brush/scraper to sweep snow off your car with, and you said all your friends kept borrowing it? And yet when in Chicago you used your car key? I’m ashamed of you!

  6. Why don’t you scratch with Susan Anthony silver dollars? They don’t fit in the ignition.
    That weatherman don’t tell one big fat lie, he tell big WHITE lie.

  7. Oooooh, yeah, you know what’s even MORE fun than trying to get that key out of the ignition after using it to scrape off ice? Trying to get the BENT key out of the ignition!! Been there, done that, still have the bent car key to prove it. (Hint: use a cigarette lighter to melt key into submission.)

  8. A match and spray can of lysol will work much better than any old key.

    you outta statahs are so dang funny about these things.


  9. I once broke off my key n the ignition. Of course, that was on that old Chevette standard transmission that would not die.

    One day I was driving down a busy 4 lane street, and when I went to shift down, the gear shift broke right off in my hand.

    I felt like WC Fields. People were beeping and honking at me, and I was trying to show them the gear shift lever holding it up for them to see….

    I managed to get off the road and got the lever stub into 2nd and drove all the way to the shop in 2nd.

    When I got to the welder’s shop, he started laughing so hard that he didn’t even charge me to fix it.

    Good thing the steering wheel didn’t come off.

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