WD-40 and Persistence

WD-40 and Persistence

WD-40 ®) was invented the year I graduated from high school, 1953. It was created by the Rocket Chemical Wd40 Company, a small lab in San Diego, its staff of only three people. WD stands for "water displacement." The chemist who help develop the product was attempting to create a formula to prevent corrosion by displacing water and moisture.

However, it’s the "40" in the name that has significance, at least for me. It took forty attempts before it was successful. The small company and its chemist just didn’t give up until they were successful. Not only that, the product proved so unique that it has been used in hundreds of ways never contemplated by the developer.This unique product was intended to protect metal from rust and corrosion, penetrate stuck parts, displace moisture and lubricate. However, it turns out that a small partial list of its uses includes:

Cleans piano keys Keeps wicker chairs from squeaking Lubricates small rolling toys Keeps garden tools rust-free Cleans patio door glide strip Removes crayon from clothes dryer (make sure to unplug dryer first) Removes scuff marks from ceramic tile floor Keeps metal wind chimes rust-free Removes crayon from walls Helps join plastic shelving to make disassembly easier Removes water spots from mirrors Removes crayon from carpet Removes tape marks from the wall where posters hung Shines leaves of artificial houseplants Keeps snow from sticking to shovel Removes coffee stains on floor tiles Keeps hose ends from corroding Lubricates moving parts on playground equipment Removes crayon from plastic etc etc.

All of this because the Chemist and the company refused to give up. It was Prime Minister Winston Churchill who said: "Never, never, never give up." But, my favorite quote about determination and persistence is from our thirtieth President of the United States, Calvin Coolidge. "Silent Cal" once said:

"Nothing in this world can take the place of persistence. Talent will not; nothing is more common than unsuccessful people with talent. Genius will not; unrewarded genius is almost a proverb. Education will not; the world is full of educated derelicts. Persistence and determination alone are omnipotent. The slogan "press on" has solved and always will solve the problems of the human race."

So, next time you are tempted to give up on something important think of WD-40

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