Things I will never own

In this – it’s looking like – decade of austerity I thought I’d do my bit and think about the things I will definitely not consume. I don’t mean that in a literal sense, that I am one of those weird people who discovered they have the ability to eat bottles and forks and stuff (though it would be handy for the recycling run). What I am proposing is that I will never hand over my credit card and actually pay to own these things.

A notion that has gradually dawned upon moving to the land of melted cheese and moustaches is that the Swizzers are a people who don’t want things as much as the English or the Americans. There is a perfectly logical explanation sitting on the tee waiting for me to hit down the fairway of reason with my club of obviousness and that is that stuff costs so bloomin’ much in Swizzerland that it faintly ridiculous to even entertain the idea of buying half of the things you may conceivably want.

However, I think it is more a cultural thing; that the Swiss are less showy and accepting of the things they do have and other western cultures (the UK and the US) are much more cosumerist. That there is a culture of want. Propagated by advertising and…well, I am starting to talk out of my arse, so here is my list:

  1. Driving Gloves In my considered opinion there are only two types of people who wear driving gloves. The first are serial killers, hoping to conceal trace evidence from forensics after digging their last shallow grave but failing to realise that only about ten people a year buy driving gloves; only realising their mistake in the serial killer wing of their maximum security prison where they find the other nine idiots. The other type of person who wears driving gloves are knob-ends who bore you about torque and limited-slip differentials and how certain features on the car stereo can enable you pick up traffic reports and why certain types of peaty soil make such and such Scotch whiskey the best and how you can hear the sweat drop from the bass player of Radiohead when you listen on a AM-13 Arco Value Amplifier and I wonder: why don’t they meet the previous type of person in the glove shop and do us all a fucking favour? So, I ain’t never gonna buy driving gloves. Get me?
  2. A Mont Blanc Pen Pens and pencils are the tools of my trade. I heft a pen or a pencil and scratch it across a page, some leave nice marks and some have a nice weight and feel, but – you know? – if you haven’t got anything to say or can’t draw for shit then a pen is a redundant piece of technology. I imagine that Hemingway could still write a cracking yarn with a Bic and Picasso could whip up a masterpiece with an Argos half-pen. But, oh no, you spent hundreds of pounds on a pen that is way, way better than these crude tools. Hemingway is a mutt and Picasso just a scribbling buffoon – but with this pen you truly are an artist. Bollocks. A Mont Blanc’s only purpose is to say: ‘look at me! I have a pen that costs more money than you should ever spend on a pen. I am much more important than you. You are a peasant. Look at my expensive pen, you peasant.’ The only thing I like about Mont Blancs is if you take the lid off they are sharp enough to pierce the skulls of the people who buy them.
  3. A PC I am not saying that PCs are slow, or badly made or anything like that. I like XP, it’s the best system Microsoft have made and some HPs and Alienware PCs are lovely looking beasts. But Macs are so nice. They have big screens and simple software and they work seemlessly with iPhones, iPads and iPods and all the other gizmos a modern iconoclast must own. Windows is just so ugly and it keeps telling you stupid stuff and Microsoft has tried to make the new version look nicer – bless ’em – but it just looks like an advertisement for a ringtone company in Take A Break. I use a computer every day for work and if I spend that much time using one I want it to be nice.
  4. An Electric Juicer Okay, I have a confession to make. I already own a juicer. It is small, made of glass and goes in the dishwasher when I’ve finished using it. I have witnessnessed someone trying to clean an electric juicer and it was like someone dismantling the innards of a chronograph watch except with a series of meshes so fine that the only thing that could effectively clean them are legions of mechanised nanobots the size of an atom. Why would I buy something that achieves the same result with double the work?
  5. A (auto)biography by someone under the age of 60 I reckon that most ordinary people who reach the age of 60 have a few tales to tell. If you are in the public eye or lived a particularly colourful existence then writing an autobiography is as simple as stringing together some hair-brained adventures in a roughly chronological manner. But, when a (so called) celebrity releases an autobiography at the age of 21 my blood boils a bit. Matt Cardle recently released a book called, with inventive creativity, My Story. He won X-Factor and before that he was a painter and decorator from humble origins. Shit, I have just written the whole book for you and spoiled it. Sorry. It was a shit book anyway.
  6. A 3D TV (in their current state) I am a geek. There, I’ve said it. I love tech. I watch The Gadget Show and read Engadget and generally mooch around with a pair of horn-rimmed glasses on looking like a dweeb. But the idea of sitting on my sofa with my family looking like The Roy Orbison Appreciation society is a step too far. 3D is a bit whatever to me at the moment and I think I’ll wait for it to improve massively before I invest in it. By that time holographic televisions will be here and that’ll be that.
  7. A Caravan I point-blank refuse to drive around like a pikey looking for a holiday. I don’t care how nice it is inside.
  8. A Porsche How can I say I’ll never own a Porsche? [Makes nasal sounding voice]: ‘there is no better car that is a fusion between purpose and design, with a perfect balance of rear-wheel drive and weighted steering. Point-to-point no car can get you there quicker, with the same handling and grip. The Porsche is the ultimate driving machine.’ Yeah, yeah. The thing is there is a speed limit on the roads and  – call me judgemental – the only reason people buy a road going Porsche is so people will see them in it and think: wow, what a total arsehole legend. I bet they’re a real wanker nice person and a shit great driver. I have a friend (you know who you are) who has a Porsche. It is not street legal because everything else has been stripped off of it because it is a racing car. He thinks a Porsche is only fun to drive when you redline it and hear the whistle of both turbos as the slick racing tires fight for grip on the exit of an apex.
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20 thoughts on “Things I will never own

  1. I am with you for all of the above, barr autobiographies. I agree that the ghost written memoirs of a 22 year old ‘celebrity’ should be avoided like the plaque, however I did read (ages ago) Bob Geldof’s autobiography and it was pretty well written and entertaining. I suspect he was in his 40s at the time.

  2. I am totally with you on all of the above. I did read Sir Paul’s but then, I’m pretty sure he was over 60 when he wrote it LOL.

    that being said, regarding the juicer…..the kids talked me into buying a NINJA 1100 kitchen system.

    I am not a kitchen gadget person. I can say however, I have not regretted the four easy payments of 39.95 ROFL. I can now make fresh veggie juice with ALL the veggie in it, instant ice cream (somewhat soft-servish texture-kids don’t mind) and the only thing in the ice cream is the base (apple juice or light cream) sweetener (or sugar) and frozen fruit. IT actually WORKS the way it is advertised, and I love love love love it. Kids are having smoothies for breakfast each day instead of some crap cereal with all sorts of additives in it. Instant ice cream at 11 pm when I am ensconced on the sofa watching a movie is dicky nice!!

    1. I would fight you on the kitchen gadget issue but I know that you and your husband are pretty handy with firearms, so this time I’ll let you off.

      I use two kitchen gadgets regularly: a handheld blender thingy (for making sauces and consumés) and a magimix for chopping stuff up and making pastry. I used to use a bread machine but have gone away and am making good, old fashioned wet-dough bread that is double-proved and tastes better for it.

      1. I am all the way with you on the bread. the machine was a pain in the butt and not near as good as the real thing!! I have the mixmaster, but since the Ninja allegedly makes dough as well as the consume and smoothies etc, i am rather excited to try it for dough, cookie dough more specifically. Anything that gives me ONE thing to wash instead of four, I am ALL for it…

      2. ROFL. No..I don’t work for Ninja. I do however, have two EXTREMELY persuasive children who hit me too early in the morning. I will say, we have used that thing a LOT since it came to rest on my front door. Wonder if I could get royalties????

  3. I am giggling more at the fact that you felt you had to link to the Roy Orbison wiki page – do you have no faith in your readers?

    And reading your comments I now want all my kitchen equipment to have the name “Ninja”.

    1. I have always maintained that my readership is half-way to crazy and it is my job to push and drag them the rest of the way.

      I agree that Ninja is a great name for a kitchen appliance. My favourite name for something mundane is the insect killer: Doom. That is such a cool name.

  4. I believe the “Porsche” owner wears “driving gloves”, a “Mont Blanc pen” peeping out of his (does it have to be a man?) breast pocket, but would not be seen dead in a “Caravan” even if contained an “electric juicer.”

    1. I think if you pulled a caravan with a Porsche you would get some pretty strange looks. I suppose it certainly has the horsepower.

      I agree that they are normally found with one person [shudders].

  5. Anything PC related is WAY too much work! Love my Mac and no longer have to use my husband for tech support…..Tried to convert him to the iLife but he resisted until iPad. Now never see him on the Gates supported system except for the mundane task of bill paying but expect that to change soon!

    Number 5 on the list, where do I start??? Well WTF has frigging Katie Price done except write and sign “autobiographies” WTF are the people who buy this twaddle? Since she keeps churning it out there must be someone……?

    1. Two of my adult kids are MACer’s. Me? with little ones around, MAC’s are way to expensive to ‘fix’ when the kids screw them up (regularly), or replace when they stop working. So yeah, we are PC’ers. I can get a new laptop for around $249 US whereas the MAC runs at roughly $1300 US.

      Supply and demand I guess?

      If they made MAC’s more affordable, I would probably get one, but until then, I will be solidly PC.

      Acknowledging the problems, the viruses, (we use different browsers- I de install Internet Explorer and most of the Microsoft bundled software the day I get a new PC, and then go with Open Source stuff like Open Office, Foxit Reader, Picasa, etc. That helps a lot!!

      Like MAC O/S though, love the fact that it’s virutally virus untouchable, but still, the PRICE!!!

      1. I see where you are coming from, but my first ‘proper’ mac is a Mac Powerbook that I bought in 1999 and it is still going, running the latest Mac OS and it is a touch slow but I use it for web surfing and blogging and stuff. That is over ten years old. That’s build quality, is what it is. Yeah, it may have been £1,200 when I bought it but looks good value when it’s still here.

        My Mum used to say: buy cheap, buy twice and to a certain extent she is right.

        However, PCs are the democratisation of computing, the internet and open source. Macs were always the tools of the advertising and design industry and were always niche, always expensive. Maybe Apple needs to learn democracy too.

    2. People resist Macs and Mac OS because they think they’ll never be able to achieve what they can on a PC – which is a weird myth that has been self-fulfilling for a long time. Dunno why.

      I simply don’t understand the buyers of these ‘works’ – what do they think they will possible learn from Katie Price? What possible nugget of wisdom does the girl have? I respect her for making the absolute most of her talents (be they as they are) and guaranteeing the future welfare of her children; but she ain’t exactly Warren Buffet is she? She hasn’t exactly invented the next energy source or solved global warming…

  6. Erm….I wear driving gloves, simply because I can’t bear cold hands and I wear gloves all the time when outdoors in winter/cold weather and that includes driving.

    Oh, and my brother drives a Porsche although he doesn’t wear driving gloves but I’m now tempted to buy him some.

  7. You are my 3D TV saviour. Up until now, the man’s banged on and on and on about “investing” in a 3D TV (no idea how he plans to pay for this) but has finally seen sense. I think the image of The Roy Orbison Appreciation Society has stopped him in his 3D TV-Loving tracks. I thank you.

  8. Heh heh! Also loving the illustration.

    I read Katie Price’s ‘auto’biography after finishing my book on holiday in France, and before finding the complimentary cupboard of real books. My sister-in-law had a copy (she also enjoys Kerry Katona documentaries and EastEnders).

    It made me want to kill her even more. (Katie Price. Not my sister-in-law, who is nice, if misguided).

    1. The fact that Katie Price’s autobiography even gets printed makes me cross. How many trees were felled so that she could spout some nonsense? Grrr…

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