28 April 2013

Make do and mend

Did I say that I have a lazy tendency? If you read Friday’s entry you will know the answer. But if you are too lazy to look I will tell you. Yes, I am a tad lazy.

But based on the information that I might be lazy the idea behind this blog entry might surprise you. Here, then, is the kernel of thought that I want to dress up with some waffle today:

In my opinion it is easier, where possible, to fix things rather than buy a replacement.

How so? Well, let’s think about the process for each scenario.
1. Fix it. Get out tools and have a look at the thing that’s not working. See if it’s fixable and fix it. Don’t know how? Google it. Need spares? Order any spares you need online.
2. Buy another. Spend ages looking for a replacement. Doing the research you put into buying the one that’s now not working. Going out to the shops talking to salesmen, finding the best deal and then arranging to have the old one taken away and waiting for a new one to be delivered. Or chucking the old one away and fetching the new item. Before all that, and more crucially you have to get up early and go to work to earn the money you’ll need to buy a replacement.

So, do you see? It’s easier to make do and mend than throw away and replace. Also there’s a satisfaction gained from fixing it.

Let’s also not forget the waste generated by replacing a thing.

So, here’s my contribution: I mended my watch today. It was so easy that it’s ridiculous to think that I might have got rid of it. My watch stopped working a few weeks back. I like this watch, so I want to keep it. I’ve never tried mending one before.

It had sat in a drawer for a few weeks, silently nagging me to do something I finally took it with me on a trip to town and visited a jeweller’s shop and asked them to quote me for a service: £90.00 plus. Or about double the value of the watch!

Now most would give up at this point and get another. But not I. Instead I popped the back off and took a look. The small wheel that oscillates wasn’t moving, so I shook the watch and it started again before stopping a few moments later. I thought about this and decided that I couldn’t do much unless, perhaps, there was a bit of dust in the mechanism. I got my camera blower out and set to work squirting air into the watch which promptly came back to life! I had to go back to the jeweller’s to get the back put on again. How much did that cost? Nothing, gratis, zero, free!

Splendid. Oh, and the watch is still working.

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