1. If you can't find a screwdriver, use a knife. If you break off the tip, it's an improved screwdriver.

2. Try to work alone. An audience is rarely any help.

3. Above all, if what you've done is stupid, but it works, then it isn't stupid.

4. Work in the kitchen whenever you can ... many fine tools are there, its warm and dry, and you are close to the refrigerator.

5. If it's electronic, get a new one ... or consult a twelve-year- old.

6. Stay simple minded: Get a new battery; replace the bulb or fuse; see if the tank is empty; try turning the switch "on" ; or just paintover it.

7. Always take credit for miracles. If you dropped the alarm clock while taking it apart and it suddenly starts working, you have healed it.

8. Regardless of what people say, kicking, pounding, and throwing sometimes DOES help.

9. If something looks level, it is level.

10. If at first you don't succeed, redefine success.