Saturday, January 14, 2012

R.I.P., My Faithful Friends

In a society where products seem largely designed to break down less than a year after purchase, it's increasingly rare to have a long-standing relationship with most of your "stuff".

That makes it doubly heartrending that I need to say goodbye to not one, but two of my hardest working and long lasting possessions:

#1: My Hiking Boots:

I'm sure that at least one of my kids was still in diapers when I bought these boots. The youngest is now 12, so I'd say these boots are somewhere between 10 and 12 years old. They are perfectly broken in, and have carried me in comfort through countless kilometres of tromping through the woods and trudging through the city streets running errands on foot. Unfortunately, they have suffered a fatal injury that my local shoe repair guy deemed unfixable. I know they look fine from the top - it's the heel and sole of one of them that's wrecked. You can't tell from a quick look at it, as my husband rubber cemented it back together after the shoe repair guy handed down the death sentence in an attempt to make them barely functional until I can find a replacement pair.

I'm really going to miss these boots. I knew they probably didn't have too much life left in them, but I thought I was going to get 1-2 seasons more out of them, otherwise I would have started searching for a new pair much sooner. It's going to be hard to replace these old friends!

#2: Our Blender:

This humble machine has lasted us nearly 20 years, withstanding all manner of abuse by both of my smoothie-obsessed kids, not to mention the many batches of soup it's pureed in the last 2 decades. I remember buying this blender with my husband when we first moved in together during our college/university days, paying for it entirely with Canadian Tire Money we'd stashed away (for all you non-Canadians, Canadian Tire is a national hardware store chain, and they give you a percentage of each purchase back in Canadian Tire "money", which you can then use to buy whatever you'd like!). Amazingly, it's not the motor that's shot - it's the glass carafe, which has several chinks out of it, plus it's not sealing properly and liquids are leaking out the bottom. We've replaced a couple of different parts over the years to extend its lifespan, but at this point I think the motor's days are numbered and it's really not worth it to replace all the other parts that need replacing.
Of course, I'm even more bummed that both of these hard working objects decided to call it kaput during our No-Spend Month. In fact, remembering the crazy week we had during our last No-Spend Month back in October, I'm beginning to wonder at the wisdom of declaring No-Spend Months! I think I'm probably just more acutely aware of extra, unexpected expenses during these months, as I'm sure they happen during the rest of the year, too.

I may not end up replacing either the boots or the blender until my No-Spend month is over, unless I find a fabulous deal on a suitable replacement before then.

In an age of planned obsolescence,  I honour both of these items for serving me so long and so well.

Farewell, friends! May I find worthy successors for both of you.


  1. I also have a long-lived(is that the right expression?) blender. Mine is a Kenmore and I was able to order just the carafe from Sears about 10 years ago (when the machine was 20 years old). It's still going strong. Perhaps the website for your brand might have replacement pieces as well. It's hard to say goodbye to old friends and I find the replacements not nearly as sturdy.

    1. Re: replacement parts, we are really fortunate to have a great store locally that specializes in replacement parts for all types of small appliances. We've purchased a few different parts from them over the years (including parts for the blender!). I was considering getting a replacement carafe, but wondering if it's a worthwhile investment at this point in its lifespan (i.e. if the motor would hold out long enough to make it worth it).

  2. Ahhh, I feel your pain saying farewell to hiking boots. I just retired mine (and bought the same brand after a bad experience with a different brand). I have a friend that made bookends out of her beloved hiking boots by putting rocks in them.

    I too have an Osterizer blender still going strong (knock on wood!).

    1. The Osterizers do seem to last a long time. I'm pretty sure that's the brand of blender we had when I was growing up, too - and as far as I can remember, we had the same blender my entire childhood and beyond. I'm pretty likely to buy the same brand when I do get a replacement!

  3. I was in the same situation with my osterizer and luckily I did not throw it out. I had bought mine 27 years ago to make baby food and was kinda bummed when the glass was broken.Within 1 week I found everything but the motor plus a 1 cup plastic blender cup with it's own base and blade for $1. at the local thrift store. When your glass leaks due to dried out gasket, try a rubber sealer ring.
    I see that a lot of new blenders have plastic not glass bowls.


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