Ninja Hacks For Doing Everyday Stuff A Lot Faster

As someone who fights a continuing war against physical objects – any pair of sunglasses over $10 gets broken or lost, pasta dinners somehow crawl up my hand and cover it in sauce – I am appreciative of this 5-minute compilation showing you how to do a lot of everyday things faster. It shows you how to quick-dry your nails with cooking spray, peel an egg in seconds with the “tap and blow” method, and how to take off your shirt with one hand in one smooth motion.

While we’re in the spirit, someone could make this clip about 2 seconds faster by editing out the viral plug for Sprint at the end. Well, at least marketers have progressed past nut shot videos.

How to do things faster [snotr]

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  1. CaughtLooking says:

    The video should have had the Sham Wow dude showing us this stuff.

  2. Hoss says:

    I dunno about the banana tip. Didn’t seem to save any time at all

    • Rebecca K-S says:

      Agreed, not faster.

    • stormbird says:

      I pinch the non-stem end and peel. Easier and faster. It’s how monkeys do it at the zoo.

      • Sneeje says:

        I actually disagree. I was told that and tried it for a while–I think it has more to do with how ripe the banana is. The only thing that might be a benefit is I smashed the banana less, but not a lot less. It was not actually faster.

        • I wumbo. You wumbo. He- she- me... wumbo. Wumbo; Wumboing; We'll have thee wumbo; Wumborama; Wumbology; the study of Wumbo. says:

          You have never gotten a bendy stem, then.

          • Sneeje says:

            I think I know what you’re talking about–but the bendiness seems to be affected by ripeness, which also makes pinching the bottom harder.

    • tooluser says:

      Monkeys like very ripe bananas. We smoosh them thoroughly and open them wherever there is least resistance, consuming the smooshed paste that flows out. We do not make smoothies with them, or slice them to put on cereal, or fry them in corn oil, or eat them when they are unripe.

      But they certainly are delicious. Except for the stringy bits, and that sharp little spike at the end inside the flower end (the non-stem end). And the peel is useless in the wild.

      And once a week I eat a hard boiled egg.

  3. Rocket says:

    That was kinda awesome.

  4. Loias supports harsher punishments against corporations says:

    I feel they could get sued for the parking one. At least have a “just kidding, please don’t try this” tag on the video. (no audio for me; did they say not to do it?)

    • Rocket says:

      The parking one was awesome. Too bad I could never pull that off.

    • Mr. Fix-It says: "Canadian Bacon is best bacon!" says:

      There is, in the video, a caption that says “Performed by a professional stunt driver on a closed set. Don’t be a frickin’ idiot.”

      • Loias supports harsher punishments against corporations says:

        Oh god, is THAT what that says in angled side-text for 1.5 seconds? Sheesh.

        • Mr. Fix-It says: "Canadian Bacon is best bacon!" says:

          As for the ‘legality’ issue, the Handbrake Emergency Turn (or ‘J-Turn’) is in the provincial driving handbook of Newfoundland under ‘Essential Skills’, but is strongly cautioned as a ‘Use in emergency situations ONLY’ technique.

          I guess where and when you perform this trick determines whether or not it’s a moving violation ;P

      • tooluser says:

        Shirley you can’t be serious. Does anyone need a warning about that? Really?

    • kross10c says:

      The people running away before the car got there was funny

  5. Toffeemama is looking for a few good Otters says:

    I am so trying the egg thing for lunch!

    • "I Like Potatoes" says:

      Me too. That’s a new one for me.

    • iggy21 says:

      i had someone try to show me the egg one last month. They couldn’t get it to work…

      • Toffeemama is looking for a few good Otters says:

        I made myself some tuna salad, with an extra egg on the side. Two eggs; the first one worked perfectly, the second one took a little more lung power, but still worked well. It definitely beats me trying to peel them the normal way, I always end up mutilating the egg.

        • "I Like Potatoes" says:

          Mine did not come out of the shell, but it did loosen the shell so they peeled very easily.

        • moonunitrappa says:

          Also try rolling them on the counter to crack as much of the surface of the egg as possible. This works quite well too.

    • russbii says:

      I read that it’s really dependent on how fresh the eggs are and putting some baking soda in the water while boiling…

      At least I think I did. I’ve tried it several times and nearly gave myself skin failure.

    • ycnhgm says:

      My first reaction is that you have to use older eggs to get this trick to work. The older the eggs the less the inside clings to the membrane under the shell.

  6. nybiker says:

    First thought regarding the tomato-based condiment: there is a brand out there that capitalizes on the slowness of its product coming out of the bottle. They claim the slowness is due to its richness of being made with actual tomatoes. But for other brands, maybe the tip will work.

    Some of the other tips only involve part of the process. Peeling potatoes. Sure if you don’t count the time it takes to heat up the water, then the process is faster. I didn’t miss anything, did I? IIRC it said to boil the potato for a certain amount of time, right?

    I liked the hard-boiled egg, sorbet, and quick-chill tips.

    • OSAM says:

      You have to cook the potatoes anyway right? This just means you’re peeling after coking (or partial cooking) instead of before. No time wasted.

      • JamesBenjamin says:

        Well, it would take about 3 times as long to boil a whole potato compared to peeling it and boiling smaller chunks, so you do the math…

        • babyruthless says:

          I assumed for this tip that you’re just parboiling the potato–dropping it into boiling water for a minute or so, then dunking in ice and slipping the skin off. At this point you would chop and then return to boiling water. As long as the end game is boiled, skinless potatoes, it’s probably still faster, since now you have boiling water. This is a similar technique for peeling many thin skinned fruits, like peaches (if you’re making jam, say) or if you want skinless tomatoes.

        • Youngfrankenstein says:

          Boiling them whole keeps more water out of them if you’re mashing them.

  7. Cheap Sniveler: Sponsored by JustAnswer.comâ„¢ says:

    Sped peel a potato: DON’T peel it. A large portion of the nutrients are in the skin.

    • Cheap Sniveler: Sponsored by JustAnswer.comâ„¢ says:

      Speed. Edit fail.

    • Hoss says:

      too bitter for mashed potatoes

    • raydee wandered off on a tangent and got lost says:

      But also a large portion of the pesticides and any contaminants in the dirt.

      I personally prefer peel-on, even in mashed potatoes, but if I was going to serve potatoes to children, I’d probably peel them.

      • Cheap Sniveler: Sponsored by JustAnswer.comâ„¢ says:

        Your kids probably eat dirt with more contaminants than a bag of potatoes contain. Just scrub them with a “scrubby” pad.

        “They say, we all have to eat a peck of dirt before we die!”

    • Happy Tinfoil Cat says:

      ef the nutrients, most the FLAVOR is in the skin.

    • catastrophegirl chooses not to fly says:

      i wish, now being unable to eat them due to medical issues, i actually miss potato skins. baked potato without the skin is actually pretty nasty

  8. phil says:

    Wait: Their quick, cool drink solution requires 1 to 2 CUPS of salt? What a waste.

    Better solution: Put the can in fridge the day before you want to drink it…

    • Cheap Sniveler: Sponsored by JustAnswer.comâ„¢ says:

      True. But if you had to cool a LOT of drinks in a short time, say at a party… in a cooler… yea, it would be worth it IF I used salt from my water softener instead of expensive table salt.

      Same theory as is used to make ice cream.

      • Loias supports harsher punishments against corporations says:

        Expensive table salt? I laughed.

        • Cheap Sniveler: Sponsored by JustAnswer.comâ„¢ says:

          Really. By the pound, salt is very cheap in rock form. A box of table salt is only a few cups, it costs about 60 cents a pound , and a bag of softener salt is about $3 for 40 pounds – that’s about 7 cents a pound. If you’re using a lot – making ice cream, for example – it makes a lot of “cents” to use the softener or rock salt.

          Wait: Look at my name. “Cheap Sniveler”. A penny saved, etc. Why pay more?

        • outis says:

          Yeah, can’t recommend doing this with fleur de sel or volcanic black :)

      • outis says:

        In my college days we filled the laundry machine with salt and ice water for parties. Just change the setting and let it drain after it’s all melted the next day.
        Worked great until someone ran a load and there was still a bottle in there….

      • GenXCub says:

        This was on Mythbusters (the original myth was that you could bury beer cans in dirt, pour gasoline and light it, and yes it was busted). The Water + Ice (no salt) was acceptable as well. Not 2 minutes, but faster than just ice.

    • Hoss says:

      Wrap the can or bottle in a wet towel and insert into freezer

    • Happy Tinfoil Cat says:

      I’ve done this in a pinch and you can use a lot less if just doing one or two cans.

      The residual salty ice-water is a heck of a lot of fun in the obligatory waterfight at the BBQ.

  9. suburbancowboy says:

    These are cool tricks, but a lot of these don’t save you any real time. Getting my drinks cold by simply putting them in the refrigerator in advance takes a lot less time then getting a bowl, mixing ice and salt and standing there and stirring. Sure it is great if you need to get drinks cold in a pinch, but it is more time consuming than saving.

    I can spend 20 seconds peeling a potato, or I could waste time boling water, and preparing a bowl full of ice.

    I really don’t see how the shoe tying method is going to save 4 days of your life. The twisty part in the beginning was done already.

  10. Muddie says:

    I’ve tried the egg one before and never got it to work. I just stood there looking like a moron getting redder and redder in the face. Maybe that was the point though.

    • erratapage says:

      It requires fairly fresh eggs.

      • webweazel says:

        Fresh eggs are very hard to peel. Older eggs work better.

        Another hint for boiling eggs: take a thumbtack and poke a tiny hole in the blunter end of the egg before cooking. The air pocket is there, and as the egg cooks, the egg can expand to fill the space as the air is expelled and the big “dent” at the end will be much smaller, or gone, and your eggs will be much “prettier” if you were doing deviled eggs or something. This works exceptionally well. (Guessing which end is which on the eggs sold nowadays is much harder.)

        Another trick is when the eggs are finished cooking, rinse them immediately in cold water and let them sit in it for a few minutes to cool. This should also help with peeling.

  11. BuyerOfGoods3 says:

    Ok, I wasn’t impressed until the Potato Peel. The egg is impressive if it works…and if you catch it!

    • imasqre says:

      I was with the potato peeling.. have you ever tries to peel a mass amount of hot boiled potatoes? UGH.
      And yeah yeah, you can boil them already peeled, but hand peeling is a pain in the butt, and the starches (ie potato taste) get diminished if you cook without a skin.
      So yeah.. I like it lol!

      And the T-Shirt thing, I REALLY want to try

  12. Portlandia says:

    I think the T-shirt folding thing is pretty awesome.

    • Jfielder says:

      I’ve been ninja folding my t-shirts for years. I hate doing laundry, so it makes it suck a little less.

      Also, something about folding that way makes the shirts stack perfectly and take up much less space.

    • Mr. Fix-It says: "Canadian Bacon is best bacon!" says:

      Took me about 20 minutes to figure it out… apparently you do have to reach across to the far side; that wasn’t just a demonstration thing ;3;

    • parv says:

      Yup, shirt folding was the most impressive. I need to access a better, slower video for slow me.

  13. yurei avalon says:

    But… I already have a guy to take my shirt off in one swift motion for me, why would I ever bother to do it myself? :D

    Where can I buy one of those Japanese speed shirt folding guys? I’m so terrible at folding laundry. Better yet, are they cute? I could hire one to do my shirt removing for me as well and probably save 6 months of my life haha!

    I actually want to try the potato thing. I make mashed potatoes a lot, and I’m wondering if instead of peeling them and then boiling, if I could reverse the process and boil it and then shuck the skin off instead. Would be stupid to waste time doing that for just a couple of potatoes though.

    I wish I could try the egg thing at work when people order hard boiled eggs but, I somehow doubt blowing on someone else’s food is very sanitary.

    • raydee wandered off on a tangent and got lost says:

      Actually, there are some mashed potato purists who insist that boiling a potato in its jacket until fully cooked, and then peeling and mashing, results in fluffier, happier potatoes that are not as water-logged as the mashed potatoes which result from the peeled-and-sliced, boiled, then-drained-and-mashed recipe.

      I’ve never had them that way, though, so I cannot vouch for the veracity of these claims.

  14. ellmar says:

    Damn, I hope it’s clear that speed peeled eggs are for personal consumption only. Serving those to friends just seems wrong.

  15. jebarringer says:

    I think I remember seeing this video… about two or three years ago. And like the comments for this one, many of the “time saving steps” were shown to be not too useful or efficient in the long run.

  16. JAlfaro87 says:

    The egg thing works. It’s all about how you crack the ends. You have to be able to crack the ends perfectly without putting a crack anywhere else in the shell of the egg. Also just blow sharply like you were shooting a spit wad not like you’re blowing up a balloon. It takes some practice but once you get it, it makes deviled eggs go much much faster and its a fun trick..

    • Mr. Fix-It says: "Canadian Bacon is best bacon!" says:

      Yeah some of these tricks are tricky to explain by demonstration alone.

  17. Dalsnsetters says:

    I hard boil my eggs in my rice steamer and the shell comes off in one piece. I’m not standing around hyperventilating while peeling my eggs.

  18. gambrill says:

    1). For the egg trick to work, you must add baking soda to the water you boil the eggs in; it changes the pH thus reducing the adherence of the shell. Here’s Tim Ferriss with a demo http://youtu.be/PN2gYHJNT3Y

    2). The shoe tying trick is nice but not very secure – you’ll spend more of your time retying it throughout the day. Here’s how I do it (forgive the putting the tripod on the table I was using faux pas) http://youtu.be/kJd2p50N-YM

    3). I’m not sure this is a time saver, but here are two lil tricks for serving chips and sealing the bag without a chip clip http://youtu.be/sOB-FuO4mmA

  19. Erika'sPowerMinute says:

    **Who doesn’t pull off their shirt that way?

    **Speaking of shirts–that’s the Martha Stewart fold. My friend told me she saw it on her show and I still can’t figure it out. #kinda spatially retarded

    **The iPod and shoe tying things are awesome.

    **Don’t tell the people at my church that when I make three dozen devilled eggs I’m blowing my germs all over them.

  20. Erika'sPowerMinute says:

    I can absolutely vouch for the veracity of these claims. You can take it to the bank that the PowerMinute household serves the most delicious fluffy mashed potatoes ever and it all starts with whole boiled potatoes. When you cube them first and then boil, a ton of the outside of the cubes sloughs off and disappears down the drain, leaving slightly undercooked, waterlogged potato remains. Yuck.

    Scrub and prick your potatoes a few times with a fork, cover with water, and boil until a knife passes through easily, replenishing water if necessary. Depending on the number of spuds and size of pan this will probably take 30-45 minutes. Remove potatoes and set aside in sink or on countertop to dry out slightly, drain water, turn off burner, and then put a few tablespoons of butter, your milk, and S & P into the warm pan on the warm burner. Swirl it a few times until everything is melted and warm (you don’t want to put mix your hot potatoes with cold dairy products). Put on an oven mitt on your non-dominant hand, cradle hot potato in said mitt, and peel quickly and carefully with a paring knife (you will find that the peel comes off in large pieces if you grasp the peel between your thumb and the blade and pull gently). Dump in pan, mash gently with your masher, then use a wooden spoon to combine thoroughly. Delicious.

    By the way, I’ve been doing this for years and recently read that Chris Kimball, the neurotic Cooks Illustrated guy, also recommends this method. Vindication!

  21. LastError says:

    Without even looking at the video, I know how to get a shirt off in less than a second. Reach over your head and grab your collar at the back, and pull up. Done.

    The slicker follow-on is to pull your jacket off a chair the same way and manage it so you get both arms in very quickly. To somebody not paying total attention, it looks like your jacket jumps on to your back.

    Hey, knock it all you want. The Fonz has nothing on me. Hey!!!!

  22. skepticalbunneh says:

    WOW, these videos are at least 2 years old- that’s scraping the bottom of the barrel if I do say so myself…

  23. fuceefacee says:

    Though I would never peel a potato for any reason, (the peel is the best part) the same method works real well for peeling tomatoes.