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10 Modern Conveniences We Do Not Own

  • Mar 26, 2011
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If many of you knew how my wife and I lived you would be appalled. We live a very simple and somewhat spartan life. In other words, we live within our means. I drive a 13 year old Nissan Sentra and my stereo equipment is more than 20 years old. We are a great match because neither of us have any interest in most of the new contraptions that are so popular today. I thought it might be fun to compile a list of some of the things we have consciously chosen to do without. I hope you enjoy it.
Clothes Dryer
Since it is just the two of us we really don't need a dryer. We dry our clothes in the basement in bad weather or outside on a clothesline most of the time. Although I am a staunch conservative I have long believed that energy conservation is one of they keys to solving our nations energy problems. Did you know that clothes dryers use 6% of the electricity consumed in this country? Such a waste! This is a conscious lifestyle choice on our part.
Big Screen TV
Neither one of us has any interest in this one. We live in a small cape with lots of windows. I am not even sure where we could put one if we wanted it. We are perfectly content with our 10 year old 27" TV. I am sure that eventually we will own a big screen TV as that is just about all you can get these days but onl when our current set kicks the bucket.
Kindle v1 with Mighty Bright Book Light
As someone who spends about 9 hours a day gawking at a computer screen at work the last thing I want to do when relaxing at home is look at another screen while I am reading. I find something very comforting about holding a book in my hand a turning the pages. I certainly have nothing against this technology but it's just not for me.
I think of all of the things on this list this is the one you might be able to talk me into. It must be nice to luxuriate in a jacuzzi after a hard days work. Again, we would have no room for one in our house and I doubt we could afford it. Maybe if I win the lottery.......
GPS Tracking Device
Great technology for those who really need it. But frankly, I can't believe the number of people who have this. I have absolutely no interest in this. People are becoming helpless and totally dependent on gadgets and this in my view is one of the chief offenders.
I am going to be 60 years old in a few months and I have never lived in a house that had a dishwasher. Shocking! This is one appliance that I never had any interest in because if you scrape and rinse the dishes the way you are supposed to you could almost have the dishes done by hand. Great for dinner parties and large families but in my view toally unnecessary for lots of people.
Remote Car Starter
For several years I worked in the cell phone business. As a sideline, one of our locations installed remote car starters. Now this is great technology for a 70 year old with arthritis living in a colder climate but I was appalled by the number of 20 somethings who were getting this installed in their vehicles. Seems like people are becoming lazier and lazier and do not want to endure even a few moments of discomfort or inconvenience. Meanwhile, people get these installed by third party sellers despite the fact that it can void their warranty. I think I'll pass on this one (at least until I turn 70).
Teflon cookware
I would never ever use this stuff. Over the years there have been numerous news reports about studies showing that the chemicals known as PFO's, PFOA's and PFC's were being released from cookware and getting into people's bodies. Once again all in the name of convenience. No thanks!
Air Conditioner
Once again, in our 24 years of marriage we have never had air conditioning in our home. Neither one of us really care for it. Rhode Island has a pretty moderate climate. While there are several days a year we could really use an air conditioner we get by quite nicely with some great fans. They are a heck of a lot cheaper to operate too. Our electric bill rarely exceeds $50 regardless of the time of year.

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March 28, 2011
Yeah! Sometimes the tried and true ways are the way to go.
March 28, 2011
sweet list! I am not appalled, I am actuallly very impressed. I was actually thinking of adapting the ancient way to cooking myself since I've seen a show how he lowered his cholesterol and blood pressure by changing his habits.
March 28, 2011
Impressive in your Spartan ways, I see. I think I see a few here that I don't have, as well. I don't know that they're conscious choices for me ... I guess they are ... maybe it's more the common-sensical side of my brain that says, "What do I need a jacuzzi for?" I haven't been bitten with the Kindle bug though I've started to grow more interested, though.
March 27, 2011
Great list, Paul! You and your wife are better people than I- I'm definitely one of those suckers that use their GPS probably much too much. I don't have 3,4,5,7,8, &9 which is perfectly fine with me :)
March 27, 2011
I have a clothes dryer, AC and Teflon cookware (though I've been converting to cast iron!). I have a dishwasher, but NEVER use it, especially when living by myself. Such a waste of electricity and water! I can understand it for a large family though. I do confess to having the Kindle and GPS on my smartphone. I commend you for living the lifestyle that you do. It sounds so nice and simple. Thanks for sharing this great list, Paul!
March 26, 2011
What a great list Paul, I love it! Of all the things you've mentioned we only use the clothes dryer and the GPS. The dryer is a must because we live in a condo and there really is no place to dry most sheets and clothing, I do air dry my daughter's cloth diapers though. The GPS we bought because every time we went somewhere new we would get lost, and with a baby it wasn't as fun as the two of us. We cancelled our cable a little while ago, we never watched TV. And even though we have AC we never use it. :)
March 26, 2011
Thanks for you input. Everybody has legit reasons to have some of these things but an remote car starter? C'mon!
March 26, 2011
:) I think the only way I would begin considering one of those is if I lived somewhere in northern Canada and had to commute daily for work, then again - I might use skis or a dog sled instead! ;)
About the list creator
Paul Tognetti ()
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I guess I would qualify as a frustrated writer. My work requires very little writing and so since 1999 I have been writing reviews on non-fiction books and anthology CD's on amazon.com. I never could … more
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