Okay, Listen Here

Okay, Listen Here

Monday, October 10, 2011

Too Much Stuff

I was sitting there trying, and mostly failing, to understand the shirts in the Signals catalog. I gave up. Understanding those shirts is like trying to get the jokes written on the whiteboard on the Big Bang Theory. I never will. The Guy, Godson's Mom, and Godson's Dad are science people and they laugh their fannies off, but I've taught them to stop trying to explain whiteboard jokes to me. Some things are better left elusive and I am not a whiteboard kind of person. Though I could be. There are three in this house. Three. Nobody needs that many whiteboards.

Nobody needs half the stuff we have. I grew up with a woman who couldn't stand a lot of stuff. We had one stapler and two pairs of scissors—one for fabric and one for paper. We had one pencil sharpener. For a long time we only had one Magic Marker at a time—black. She finally gave in and let us have a red one too. There were no whiteboards. Of course, I don't think whiteboards existed back then. My niece is just like my mother. Can't stand a lot of stuff. Sold her girls' Madam Alexander dolls in a yard sale when they got too old for them. I feel the pain. My mother gave away Barbie and Ken. She asked me first and I said yes, but, at 14, how was to know what they'd be worth?

I don't think there was as much stuff back then. Certainly not as many choices.

This is what I remember being available:

  • Cheese: Velveeta, American, cheddar, Swiss, bleu, and parmesan in a green shaker can.
  • Laundry detergent (which we called washing powder): Tide, Cheer, and Ivory Snow.
  • Coffee: Maxwell House, Eight O'clock, and Luzianne (which my mother disdained.)
  • Salad dressing: French, 1000 Island, Bleu Cheese, Green Goddess.. There must have been Italian but I don’t remember it at my house.
  • Bread: White and Rye.
  • Shampoo: Breck, Prell, and Head and Shoulders.
  • Soap: Dial, Lava, Ivory, Camay.

Not that I'm saying it was better then. No. I like a lot of choices. I like cheese with names I can't pronounce. But, Sometimes, when I'm trying to buy steak sauce, my head starts spinning. In the days when there was only A-1 and Heinz 57, it was hard to make a mistake. Picking a steak sauce is a lot of responsibility these days.

Are you overwhelmed by choices and stuff?


  1. Yes, I am! Especially shampoo. They usually switch the packaging on me so I can't just find the bottle. I spend what seems like hours trying to find my shampoo amidst all the other types. Sometimes I just give up and buy something. It's exhausting.

  2. I hate when the store stops carrying my favorite product for some new improved product!

    I like the new things in the makeup but not so much in the mayo section!

  3. Cheryl, Oh, yes the head can pound.

    Stephanie--Mayo. Oh, my. Canola, light, fat free, low fat, olive oil, wasabi flavored, Yes, Hellman's makes light, fat free, and low fat. I saw them today. I bought the light because that's what I always buy. But what's the difference in that and low fat?

  4. Yes! I can post again! Woo-hoo!!!

    Jean, products are always changing and I think products are made to adjust to everyday living as well. But I want to know why companies rejevenate products that are fine to begin with. Honestly, I think it's an advertising ploy to make consumers think they have to spend their money on something new. After all, who's going to spend money on something new if they already have the product?

    Just look at technology and how fast it changes. It irritates me that you buy a new tech product only to find out it's outdated from the moment you put it in your house. Grrr! Example: cell phones (iphone)

  5. Heinz-57. A couple of years ago they changed the formula, made it more ketchupy (word?) with less vinegar. I didn't like it. So, I quit buying it. Guess a lot of others did too. Someone told me they had changed the formula back to the original so I tried it again. Just like the old stuff. Why mess with something that works? Shade of New Coke (that worked out well too). Maybe it's just a marketing ploy but I don't see it.