On The Cusp of Enlightenment: An Advice Column

Looking for answers? In need of advice from a Taurus-sun, Virgo-moon, Gemini-rising? Think you can stump me? Email Simone at simone.a.levy@lawrence.edu with your own questions and you just might be featured in next week’s column.

Dear Simone, 

I am looking to buy and restore a 1967 Chevy Camaro, but I don’t know where to begin. Any advice? My budget is four dollars. 

Sincerely, Geoff

Dear Geoff, 

The first thing you are going to need to do is decide what your plan for the car is. Are you going to have it on display or are you building a hot rod? These are two completely different modes of restoration, and it is necessary to have a plan before jumping into anything. In addition, you are going to want to think about investment value. Before you put any money into a car, think about what you are going to get out of it. If you are restoring it for a concours restoration, you are going to want the money you invest into the car to be made back in competition earnings. Either go big or go home. If the car is from 1967, it likely was not dipped in the chemical rust-proofing bath like later cars were. So check for rust, which tends to accumulate in the gutter of the rear window, the trunk pan below the rear window, in front of and behind the back tires, the side glass rain gutter, behind the front tire and places hidden by the front fender. In addition, be sure to check for rust inside the car on the top of the dashboard at the base of the windshield. Naturally, you are going to want to shoot for a car with as little rust as possible, as rust, especially considering it creates holes in the metal, is one of the more difficult hurdles to get over in car restoration. 

Upon rereading your question, I just now realized that you have a budget of four dollars. Good luck with everything, Geoff! 

Dear Simone,

My name is Patricia, but I go by Trish. I have a gnarly ingrown toenail. Do you suggest going to a podiatrist? Or maybe a chiropodist? Should I just go to a nail salon and let the manicurist deal with it? Or do you suggest that I do my own conservative treatment on the toenail? It hurts a whole lot. I eagerly await your response. 

Best wishes, Trish

Dear Trish, 

I am so excited to guide you through this whole toenail journey. I myself have experienced my fair share of ingrown toenails. They are the spice of life. The searing pain of a keratin sheet forcing its way through toe flesh is just one of the many beautiful things life has to offer. Here is what you are going to do. If you want to be a baby and go the easy way out with lidocaine and doctors and iodine and gauze, then go to your basic podiatrist or chiropodist, depending on whether you are in the United States or Canada or wherever. But if you want to be a real person, take off your socks and grab your telescopic garden clippers and get to business. If you do not have telescopic garden shears, do not worry. I was outside the other day cleaning up garbage and I found a pair of garden shears just lying on the ground, so maybe be on the lookout and you might find some like I did. 

Okay. So once you have the shears, pull out the infected toe. Clip the skin around the nail. This is called granulated tissue. It is the tissue that grows in your body’s attempt to heal the wound, but at this point, the granulated tissue is doing you no good and you can just cut it away. Dig through that flesh and cut out the side of the toenail that is digging into the toe. Snip it out and bandage it up. Hopefully, it will heal nicely and you will be okay, but if bleeding continues for more than four hours, you should probably go to a hospital.