Howdy partner(s)! My theme for this post is all about trying to reuse and recycle what’s already out there before buying something new from a store. You know the old saying “They don’t make ’em like they used to!”? Well, it’s for damn sure true. I bought a can opener last year from a big home goods store and before I even moved a year later it was already broken. I’m not an overly aggressive can opener-er so I mean, come on now.
Knowing that I needed a can opener and a few other kitchen items I set out to find these things. Estate sales, garage sales, and thrift stores always have plenty of kitchen stuffs. I love the old sturdy feel of a heavy, not so pretty, but dang sure resilient kitchen utensil (I love pretty freely). You know that old can opener/ladle/butcher knife/frying pan/whisk/satanic worship altar/teapot your grandparents have? They definitely got it when they first got married and they still use it to this today. Proof. Science.
Anthony being the attentive listener, and lucky fella, he is went to went to work the next day and ran into a friend who was moving and had to get rid of a bunch of stuff. Did he have a can opener? Fuck yes he did. Cost? Free.
That weekend my mother and I hit up an estate sale in Oceanside. Again, this one was run by an outside company, so the furniture and art was pretty expensive. The coolest thing I saw though was a whole bunch of custom “Made in the U.S.A.” men’s suits. If Ant was with us I would’ve made him awkwardly try them on while some horny old ladies watched, but he wasn’t, so it wasn’t worth it to even pay $5 for them if they wouldn’t fit.
However, focusing back to kitchen items I found a tOTaLLy aWeSOMe (90’s AIM away message font) brass and teak bottle opener from Thailand and a sweet hanging fruit basket. I don’t neeeed a bottle opener since there’s technically one on the can opener, but would you rather have your company open a beer with that or a lovely gold plated elephant head? I thought so. The fruit basket was a great find because our kitchen is TIGHT. Not tight like slang for looking fantastic, like tight as in if two people are in it their butts will inevitably touch (I hope you’re not shy about butt touching in my place).
Alright, here’s my quick sermon on buying used and upcycling: Landfills are filled with perfectly fine things that people just didn’t want anymore and didn’t give away. What a damn waste! I’ve mentioned before that many retail stores just throw away returned items or things that don’t sell well. Some clothing/shoe stores will literally slash their own merchandise that doesn’t sell so that no one can go through their garbage and take it. What a bunch o’ jerks! Sites like FreeCycle and Craigslist (both linked) are great for picking up or getting rid of lightly used items. You’ll also save a ton of money! That same hanging fruit basket runs from $10-$30 on Amazon, where as I only paid $5 for both of my items! Winner winner, Kitty Glitter.
So just remember, the next time your stupid plastic whisk breaks off in your cake batter or your grandma serves a pot roast in a 60 year old pan made of equal parts mercury, asbestos, and lead… they don’t make ’em like they used to. I believe my friend Captain Compost Heap sang it best in a little ditty from the episode Zanzibar of Rocko’s Modern Life (click the lyrics for the song)… “R-E-C-Y-C-L-E Recycle, C-O-N-S-E-R-V-E Conserve, don’t you P-O-L-L-U-T-E pollute the rivers, sky, or sea or else you’re going to get what you deserve”.
Wake me up before you go-go,