Monday, June 17, 2013

Lifespan Ending

There are a lot of things in life that we don't really give any mind to until they fail. I've had two failures in the past 5 days.

My chair mat at work was the first to go.

Actually, it had been cracked for some time and I'd lost a few small pieces over the past winter. But, in May, it disintegrated. After getting the chair wheels hung up several times, I ordered a new one. Do you know how expensive these are? I was completely astounded. $100 and up for a chunk of heavy plastic. I was able to find one for much less under the "economy" label.

With big items like this, you take them to the hallway and put a "trash" sticker on them so the cleaning staff knows to dispose of them. Along the way, more pieces dropped off the center.

It left a debris trail from my office to the hallway.

I started working here in 2000, so I've been with this company for 13 years now. This chair mat predates me by at least 2 years, possibly more, but 2 is a good assumption. I have no idea what they paid for it back then, but whatever it was, we certainly got a good value out of it. I hope the new one holds up even half as long.

I didn't realize how much I had adapted (there's that word again) to the bumps and holes in the old one until I put this new one on the floor. That new plastic smell usually makes me cough and causes my allergies to flare up but I've been okay. I think my body has other things to worry about than my allergies.

Sunday, I decided waffles were in order.

I have a couple and then freeze the rest, two to a package. These make quick and filling suppers, lunches and, oh yes, breakfasts.

In order to make the batter, you beat the liquid ingredients together, mix the dry ingredients and then mix the dry into the liquid. A whisk is the perfect tool for this. I started mixing the liquid and the dry ingredients together and saw a piece of black in the batter. It took a bit of fishing to find it.

It's the center peg in the whisk and holds the tool together. I tried to stick it back in. It held for a few more minutes but then fell out again and with it came some small pieces of black plastic. This is falling apart.

I remember when I got this. It was summer and Carole and a bunch of her friends invited me to go see Over the Hedge, an animated feature about suburbia and wildlife. Robert Morris College was handing out free whisks to publicize their culinary arts program. It's been a great whisk, able to whip everything from egg whites to pancake batter. But, as with many things, there is a finite life span and it would appear I have reached it. I'm thinking I should look at spending money and buying a good whisk from Williams Sonoma or Crate and Barrel, not just frequenting the Target utensil aisle. I want my next whisk to last as long as this one did.

For the moment, it will be forks and wooden spoons. I'm kind of sad to see this go. Lightweight and easily manipulated, it was easy to mix ingredients using this. We rail about planned obsolescence in so much of what we buy. I didn't even think about how long the chair mat was under my chair or this whisk was in the utensil drawer. Occasionally, something comes along to remind me that some things will last for years and they are things we don't expect.

Beverage:  Lady Gray tea


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