The Godfather: Peter Corris on being a grumpy old man #2
I’ve written before about being permitted to become a grumpy old man, and now I claim the right to complain about certain household items that annoy me. In no particular order they are:
* CD cases. I have many that have stood the test of time, perhaps 20 years or more, but there are others that fall apart almost at the first opening. Most annoying. This is especially true of boxed sets. I have double albums of Bob Dylan and the Beach Boys and others held together by elastic bands.
* Plastic 140-gram tubs of tomato paste. I won’t name the brand but when these come in joined pairs they can be almost impossible to open with no lip to pull on. Then you have to cut them open with a knife, leaving you unable to seal them – a danger to health.
* Milk cartons that don’t open at the designated place, forcing you to use a knife, resulting in an opening difficult to pour from.
* This is probably not as common as it once was – sardine tins, where the key used to open them, now breaks the lid, obliging you to use a can-opener. This is difficult to do while holding the tin steady and can cause the oil (or spring water for the health-conscious) to slop out.
* Packets of powdered laundry detergent where the material solidifies in humid weather, making it necessary to scrape and scratch at it to make it usable. This causes sneezing.
* A tongue twister – packets of pitted prunes in which not all prunes are pitted. These are a danger to the best kept teeth. The same can be said of containers of allegedly pitted olives bought from delicatessens. Bite confidently into such an olive at your peril.
* Toilet rolls and rolls of paper towels where the adhesive makes it difficult to start the roll. Irritating when something needs wiping.
* Saucepans where the handle is attached by a single Phillips-head screw. Who keeps a Phillips-head screwdriver in the kitchen? And even if you do, the screw eventually becomes loose again with use of the saucepan, making for instability and the danger of spillage.
* Typing correction fluid. Whether this comes in a bottle or a pen dispenser it inevitably dries out and becomes unusuable. Chemistry is an advanced science, but it has so far failed to find a way to keep this, presumably not complex, substance fluid.
Happily, these annoyances do not happen all at once but they are irritating when they do occur. I’m sure NRB readers could add to the list, but these will vent my spleen for now.