So you know I have this thing with tires… I think I talked about it before– my random little obsessions– with receipts and with tires. Before moving to China, I checked my tire pressures constantly. Like once a week. In China, without a car, that obession went towards my bike and e-bike. I just had to have the max psi (it makes a huge difference in the ride, by the way).
When I visited John last April, I did the penny test (stick a penny into the groove, and if the tread comes at or above Lincoln’s head, you need new tires). We definitely needed new tires. Not only was the steering wheel vibrating at high speeds, but the tire edges were balding. As expected, I started to imagine terrible things– tire blowouts on the freeway, with tire shards flying into other vehicles, killing the passengers inside. Yes, very morbid thoughts.
I then spent an eternity researching tires online. Costco, Sears, Pep Boys, blah, blah. And when I research, I go into a zone and do not emerge for days, possibly weeks. In May, I finally settled on a tire: the Kumho Solus KH16. But I had to wait until my move back to CA to arrange the purchase (John doesn’t handle that stuff). So yeah, I’d never heard of Kumho’s either but hey, the price was cheap and the ratings were really good. I wavered for a few days, unsure whether I ought to do the whole online purchase –> ship direct to installer thing (versus getting them at Costco or the dealer). In the end, I decided to take the plunge. The tires arrived Monday, and the installer mounted them yesterday. In and out in two hours. Easy breezy. If you’re looking for tires, check out TireRack. Seriously, it was a total cinch. And now, we’re cruising around on shiny, new wheels and there’s no vibration on the highway. Hurray!
In other news, did you hear about that new sunblock the FDA just approved? Anthelios or something? Apparently, Europeans and Canadians have used it for ages; the active ingredient is more effective than any other compound on the US market. All the news got me thinking about sun protection, especially since we are in the middle of a heat wave (supposedly). I’ve used Neutrogena Ultra-sheer Dry-touch sunblock (SPF 30) for the last two years. It’s a decent product, but my issue is that it peels/flakes off when I touch my skin. So if I want to apply makeup over it, or if I just wipe my mouth/chin with a napkin, the stuff comes off like eraser fuzz.
Yesterday, I began researching new sunblock. What a frickin’ headache: there are SO many choices out there! After reading reviews and product literature for a few hours (see how OCD hinders me?), I landed on SolarSense Face, a clear 6% zinc oxide sunblock. Until Athelios turns up on shelves here, zinc oxide and Parsol 1789 (avobenzone) are our only options for UVA/UVB protection. I hope SolarSense is the answer for me.
Oddly enough, I don’t go in the sun much. I’m kinda an internet junkie that way. Still, I am in California, so I really ought to have a tan. It just goes with the territory, you know? Enter sunless tanner. I used to apply this gunk in college. Back then, my argument was that I didn’t have time to sunbathe. Haha. Well now I have the time, but I’m no dumbass about the dangers of the sun. So yesterday, while I was out getting my zinc oxide, I picked up L’Oreal Sublime Bronze (can’t resist the BOGO–buy one, get one–offer), a self-tanner PLUS SPF 15 sunscreen. I probably should have been more skeptical (it’s far too multi-function), but I got sucked in anyway. And like a kid with a new toy, I had to try it as soon as I got home.
I follow product directions kind of like I follow recipes: I take minor liberties here and there. In this case, I didn’t shower and exfoliate right before. Plus, rather than go lightly over the rough spots (knees and ankles), I just decided to avoid them entirely. Haha. This morning… well, at least I know the color is right. Problem is, I look like I ran patch tests on my legs. Yeah, it’s pretty bad but you just have to laugh at my idiocy. The good thing about sunless tanners is that they last three days max. Think I’ll survive.