Here's how to pick up a few more skills Grandma and Grandpa should have passed on.

Here's how to pick up a few more skills Grandma and Grandpa should have passed on.

Sewing

Sew to Speak in Clintonville offers a vast array of classes for the aspiring seamster or seamstress. Check the full roster at sewtospeakshoppe.com/classes.

Gardening

You can't go wrong with a few herbs on the windowsill. Things like chives and thyme need little maintenance, return annually and like to be used - that is, they grow back repeatedly after you cut them off to eat.

Ironing a shirt

Iron the shirt one part at a time - first the cuffs, then the sleeves, then the body and collar. Keep a spray bottle handy to re-moisten fabric when you accidentally iron a wrinkle into the shirt. Keep the iron moving (you don't want to burn a hole through the fabric). And make sure the shirt is clean, because a hot iron can permanently press a stain into fabric.

Stain removal

Don't let a stain go through a full wash and dry cycle, or you may be stuck with it forever. Instead, wet down the stained area and blot (don't rub!) it with a sponge or wet rag. Use a stain removal solution if necessary. And if you can't get it out, let it go through the wash and try to blot it again before drying.

Knitting

You can learn the basics or get creative through classes at the Yarn Shop in Kenny Centre. Checkyarnshoponline.com for full details. Wholly Craft in Clintonville offers courses in beginning, intermediate and cable knitting; check whollycraft.net for info.

Shining shoes

Find a polish that matches your shoes, then dust them off and use a shoe polish brush to apply a minimal amount of polish. Brush in circular motions until fully coated. Let it dry for about 15 minutes, then wipe it clean with a cotton rag.

S moking a pipe

Don't inhale! Pipe tobacco is for the mouth only. Also: To keep your pipe lit when it's about to go out, gently blow into the stem until a new smolder ignites, then partially cover the bowl with your thumb and puff powerfully to get the flame burning brightly again.

Mixing a martini

All martinis should be 2.5 ounces of alcohol, usually 2 ounces of gin and .5 ounces vermouth. When people ask for a dry martini, it means they want less vermouth, so give them extra gin. And have chilled glasses on hand so it's cold even if they order it "up" (ice-free) instead of "on the rocks" (with ice).

Chopping an onion

Cut the onion straight down the middle, through the root and stem. Lay each half flat side down and cut off about half an inch from the root and stem. Peel the two halves, then chop each half several times horizontally and vertically, holding them together with your non-cutting hand. Look before you cut to make sure you aren't setting your fingers up for a world of hurt.

How to play b ridge

Like most card games, bridge is too complicated to explain in a tiny blurb. But you can learn from the best at the Columbus Bridge Club in the Crown Pointe Shopping Center on Bethel Road. They offer free lessons Thursday mornings, and they'll even match you with a partner for one of their daily tournaments. Find out more at columbusbridge.com.