I didn’t cadge one, officer, I paid for it fair and square. I just wanted a title for the post…
Moving on from bargains to gadgets – you wonder how much brain activity lights up when you find a truly exciting gadget. Even though it may be said that men are keen on gadgets and tools, women don’t mind a good gadget either, and for this reason Lakeland was invented. Or something like that.
I am never quite sure of what to make of a visit there. One woman’s gadget is another one’s pernicketiness, I suppose, and sometimes I despair of those who must care so much about teabag drips that three separate items have been put in the catalogue. ( I haven’t actually counted. But I wouldn’t be surprised.)
A gadget is a bit like an ongoing bargain, because you continue to be impressed with yourself for having it. There can be a certain excitement in more esoteric gadgets that really do do what you want them to. I have a jam funnel, and it is very exciting to own one, even if it’s not pressed into service all the time.
Lakeland probably brings out the perfectionist in us. It’s designed to feed the idea that if we do get the perfect gadget (or preferably several, for different parts of the house), life can be controlled. Your pastry will never crack. Your windows will always be shiny. Your guests will never lack for carafes with matching tumblers to have at their bedside. And so on.
So, where’s the fine line between the gadgets that do help (three cheers for the ones that help those with arthritis, or example), and those that help with our kitchen illusions?
It’s just interesting that in these times of growing obesity, yet more ready meals (even if they are organic etc.), Lakeland clearly still has these customers who do cook, bake, nay bottle and preserve. Or perhaps, as is said of cookery programmes, we watch the programmes, we buy the books, and then we sit back, happy or even smug in the idea that we have an idea of what to cook and how to do so. But no one is visiting to check that we actually do.
I saw an article at the start of the year one time, probably relating to spring cleaning, urging people to confess how many kitchen gadgets they had. I started reading through the list, and let’s just say I had more of the items on the list than not. Clearly I don’t use them all, all the time, it’s true.
But perhaps the chief joy of a gadget is that it can have an occasional use, and still be worth having. I know I’ll make some marmalade once a year, most years, and so my jam funnel can keep a place in the kitchen, safe in the knowledge (do jam funnels have knowledge? Perhaps not, given the hole in the middle) that at the critical time, it is invaluable. And above all, I enjoy using it, enjoy a little proficiency in my kitchen dabblings.
So, today’s confession purchase: cleaning cloths that you can put through the washing machine lots of times. And the catalogue. And the other catalogue – though you get them free. Hmm. Cunning, these gadgeteers.