Planned Obsolescence – Mobile Edition

Yes, I ranted about this before. In the first installment I disassembled a paper shredder to find a time bomb planted during the design stage to make sure that you need to replace something that should last a lifetime. A fancy dishrack was examined next to show how one company can fail and excel at the same time. And who can forget the food processor that was sent to a landfill due to the same evil design choices as the paper shredder. Why stop now… lets add another hot recent trend in planned obsolescence – non-replaceable batteries. Continue Reading

Fun with Planned Obsolescence Continues


No matter how frugal we think we are we still ended up with a mountain of consumer products scattered all over the house. Sure we try to minimize what we have to have but over the years it all adds up. A food processor is certainly in the “want” vs. “need” category but it’s easy to justify purchasing it since we cook at least 90% of our meals at home. Just like working on cars is a lot easier and more enjoyable when you have the right tools, cooking at home is less of a chore when you have the right tools for the job. A food processor is one of those tools and therefore a must. Continue Reading

Up Close and Personal with Planned Obsolescence


If you live in the United States, you probably get an obscene amount of junk mail delivered to your mailbox. I do to and keep thinking it’s time to register on to indicate that I wish to opt out of all direct marketing mailings. Since they claim to represent over 3,600 companies in the world it should help to cut the amount of junk mail we receive and put in the recycling bin. I was hesitant to do it before because I actually took advantage of a few credit card offers to earn money and/or points. However, it looks like most of these can still be found online so I think I’m ready for a mailbox makeover.

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Rich Neighbors + DIY Attitude = Win


Every year around this time our neighborhood designates one Saturday as a communal yard sale day. People are usually not allowed to set up and advertise garage sales so to appease the homeowners who have too much stuff the HOA organizes this yearly event when you can sell pretty much whatever you want out of a driveway or a garage.  We participated one year but I quickly found out that I would much rather list and sell on Craigslist. You generally get people who are actually looking to buy exactly what you have and there is a lot less low-balling going on since we can cut that in the bud over email.  So this time we got on our bikes and had fun riding around from house to house despite the drizzling rain that continued the whole time we were out.

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Consumer Circus


Fall is here in the Southeast and with that comes beautiful weather and the end of frequently oppressive summer heat.  Our AC units won’t get turned on until sometime in June 2014 or later if the weather cooperates as it did this year.  Our trusty box fans are migrating to the attic to hibernate after another hardworking season helping to minimize the use of air conditioning and keeping our electric bills in check.

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