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Ink Stain Removal
by Ralph Jones

Having recently purchased some new jeans, I was probably overly proud of them. Finally finding a pair that actually fit and felt good at the same time is a biggie for me. For some reason, manufacturers who make this popular type attire do not take into consideration that men can be both "full figured" (fat) and long legged at the same time. If the waste size is right, the legs are at least two inches too short. If the legs are long enough, well, you get my drift.

We went with some friends to the world's longest yard sale in Danville, Kentucky, and although we went to miles and miles of yard sales, we did manage also to get into some real stores. I finally found three pairs of jeans that actually fit and were the bleached look, my favorite color. Hurray! I got some jeans that fiiiit! I got some jeans that fiiiit! I got some…. All right, already!

Later, grandson Allen and I were rearranging things at the office and I was wearing one of my new pair of jeans. Knowing very well that they would get dirty, I used this as an excuse to prepare them for the wash. You know how it is - they don't wear well until they are washed at least once or twice. Everything was going fine with the moving until Allen came back into the room and said, "What's wrong, PaPaw? Your face is bleeding!"

Come to find out, I had picked up a bottle of red liquid "ink pad" ink. The bottle was leaking and had gotten all over both hands, then somehow on my face, and last but not least in two different locations on the new jeans. I was just sick about the ink getting on the material. The stain came off my hands and face with a little elbow grease and soap, but the pants were a different story.

Since I receive, and send, lots of e-mails, it seemed only logical to ask friends and relatives if they knew of a good trick to remove the stain. My wife had already said she did not have any secret formula. Probably my great-grandpappy Phillips would have soaked the spots in a mixture of goose grease and coal oil, sprinkled on some smushed-up boiled eggs, while whistling "Dixie" under an Elderberry tree, all this by the light of a full moon. Since all the components of his secret were not readily available, I shot e-mails to everyone on my list.

So many "special" cleaning products and/or methods were, and still are, being received. Now, you must know that these are intelligent, hard working, salt of the earth, Christian folks sending all of this. Some almost defy imagination.

They include:

Toothpaste (regular or mint?)
Baking Soda
Dishwashing detergent
Pump type hair spray
Regular type hair spray
Paint thinner
Paint solvent
Rubbing alcohol
Fingernail polish remover
Stain Stick, gel, or spray
Biz and boiling water
Ritz Color Remover

But the most recommended product was, you'll never guess, WD-40 ! ! ! Feeling a little adventurous we tried the WD-40, and amazingly enough it has reduced the “redness” somewhat. However, it sure stinks up a house. I'm surprised that no one told us to use "duct tape," after all it's good for everything else. My daughter swears duct tape will remove warts. One feller told me that all the modern-day mechanics are carrying in their toolboxes these days is WD-40 and duct tape. He said that if it moves and is not supposed to, use the duct tape. If it's supposed to move and doesn’t, use the WD-40. Sure sounds like a winner to me. But I digress.

However, an editor of a brand new monthly periodical, who shall go nameless, sent in possibly the most bizarre solution to date. His solution was to soak the spots with cigarette lighter fluid, place the pants in a sturdy metal container out in an open area and toss in a lighted match. He went on to say that they still sell "iron on" patches for denim. With good advice like that, who needs all those questionable methods?


Read more of Ralph's stories:
The Storm That Never Came
DDT ~ Yum! Yum!

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