...the voice of pensioners

Cleaning up with swifter obsolescence

14 Aug 2019

Dear LPG,


Do you remember when you bought something and expected it to last as long as possible?


Back in the second half of last century when you bought a washing machine, a cooker or any of the other home appliances that we take for granted these days, you expected at least ten years’ worth of dedicated service out of it, but these days everything needs replacing so much more quickly.  The younger people seem not to bother with fixing things at all; they just go out and get a new one as soon as they hear a funny noise or see a newer version.  Let’s be honest they don’t even do that; they are much more likely to order one online.   The people that make them no longer make things to last and advertising is also to blame, although for the manufacturing companies that use those often devious ways to attract our attention,  it just means that that very expensive aspect of corporate activity is expensive but worth the cost. 


I cannot believe how the cost of buying something as basic as a hoover has risen even though I understand that the technology has changed but, when push comes to shove, do we really need to have the one with the right branding to get the carpet clean?  I now employ someone to push it around the house for me, but my old Electrolux hoover still does a reasonable job.  It appears to me that if you don’t have a Dyson, Gtech or Shark cordless hanging on the wall somewhere while it charges the younger members of your family, though they will expect it of us oldies, just think of us as really behind the times.


Perhaps the pensioners of today will be the last to remember that something really only needs replacing when it is beyond repair.  I have to admit that it is becoming scarily obvious that, unless we keep reminding the younger people around us that we are still here, perhaps that ethos of obsolescence represents the way that many of them see us, the members of the older generation. 


PB, Sydenham