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Old 03-01-04, 09:35 PM   #1
danr
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New products disappoint me

Well, this is a rant after my car died today. I won't go into detail, but I've had the car for less than 2 years and it only has 22,000 miles. The security system went bonkers and it won't let me start my car. No, it doesn't have a valet switch either. Anyways, the "Roadside Assistance" that comes with the manufacturer warranty screwed me today by calling the wrong number, then trying to blame it on me. So I have to wait another day to get my car towed. In addition to that, I have had some other minor problems with the car. I know I know, ride a bike to work. But if you've seen the traffic on the routes to work, you wouldn't ride either (about 10,000 people work at this place, imagine the morning rush I got to deal with). My next car is going to be a piece of junk. If I'm going to have problems, I might as well not pay 350/month for them.

Other things have disappointed me. I tried buying an ebook for the first time, and I got shafted big time. Then, I bought this POS analog/digital video converter that looks like utter crap when it converts to video. The box hyped it up to be of near-perfect quality and it got a great review in a mag. I bought some software too that turned out to be garbage. I quit buying albums because artists really suck these days and they all sound the same. My computer isn't all that either, and the sub I bought for it ended up being a POS, so I had to disconnect it. I had a laptop that broke within 15 months. Even my toaster sucks. I bought a 50 dollar video game the other day that ended up sucking big time. My thermos sprung a leak. My scanner came with a dent in it, and my cell phone sucks too.

The only things I have bought that have really stood the test are my G&L Legacy Special electric guitar, and my Surly Pacer. Other than that previous guitars were garbage, and previous bikes were garbage.

With me, it is so bad, I have either canceled or postponed future purposes. I was wanting to buy a PDA, but why? So it can break? I thought about another laptop, then put the pros against the cons and decided not to. It doesn't stop there.

Now I see why people become minimalists. I am thinking about becoming one myself. Heck, I'm in the process. Anyone watch "Clean Sweep?" I've been doing a bit of my own and I'm glad that my wife has joined in without me having to brainwash her or anything. We're getting rid of a bunch of crap, and I'm not going to miss a bit of it.

Are my expectations too high? Most of the time, I don't ask for much. Like today, I understand that cars aren't perfect. But then, this a-hole decides to call the wrong number and the roadside assistance company blamed me for not being at that number. My laptop had a problem, but the company wouldn't fix it because they were "unsure" what was wrong with it. In the end, after reloading the OS and apps 5 different times, I smashed it. To add to it, I got food poisoning from one restaurant and I got NO service at another, all within one month. I'm beginning to feel like Rodney Dangerfield, I get no respect.

So is anyone else disappointed with materialism? Has anyone been repeatedly letdown by the advancements that technology attempts to deliver? Should I just drop off the face of the earth and tell everyone in email land to call me from now on? At this point, I feel that recommiting myself to life and people would be a great option.
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Old 03-01-04, 10:42 PM   #2
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I went back to a double edged razor(from the fifties) my laptop is so old it is about the size of a checkers box (free) and my newest vehicle is seven years old, the next double that. I also gave up cellphones, exspensive and I hate it when other people use them in public.
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Old 03-01-04, 10:52 PM   #3
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Wow, sucks to be you. Thanks for puttings things in perspective for me.

p.s. Sorry if you're having a bad day....week....year.....
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Old 03-01-04, 11:48 PM   #4
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For a minimalist, that sure was a long post
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Old 03-01-04, 11:56 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by danr
So is anyone else disappointed with materialism? Has anyone been repeatedly letdown by the advancements that technology attempts to deliver?
Wow, if there was a Luddite political party, it sounds like you would be a good candidate.
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Old 03-02-04, 07:36 AM   #6
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For a minimalist, that sure was a long post
Hey, at least it was all in text (bad joke).
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Old 03-02-04, 07:39 AM   #7
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Originally Posted by rockymtn_girl
Wow, sucks to be you. Thanks for puttings things in perspective for me.

p.s. Sorry if you're having a bad day....week....year.....
Well, it was just a rant, I wasn't trying to enlighten anyone, but if I can do that, good on me.

I've had a bad year when it comes to spending my money (and food poisoning). Other than that, all is good.
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Old 03-02-04, 09:00 AM   #8
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You might find this WWW site interesting. The discussion forums are not bad.

Dan
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Old 03-02-04, 09:02 AM   #9
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Yes, I am continuously disappointed by many advancements... cell phones that don't bloody work but you can surf the web in frickin' color on them! - but make or recieve a phone call? certainly not. Internet connections that one pays for but only work sometimes.

I guess some advancements work alright most of the time - while I sometimes harken back to the days of tape-to-tape editing, this non linear stuff is getting alright and the compositing software is getting nicer.
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Old 03-05-04, 09:24 PM   #10
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Never had the chance to be totally disillusioned by materialism, so I never got disappointed by it. But yeah, there's some products out there that don't represent their creators very well. Especially as far as children's toys go. And the Toyota Scion. I think car companies have a deal going where every year, 1 or 2 companies come out with cars far more hideous than what's currently on the market, so the 1 or 2 companies that got stuck with the assignment last year can sell the hideous cars they came out with the previous model year. A viscious cycle we are forced to visually suffer because some dumb marketing major (not a slam on all marketing majoys) somewhere convinced people that "hip" and "ugly" are synonymous.
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Old 03-07-04, 09:39 AM   #11
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I have had more problems with poor quality service than products lately. You just can't be too careful when choosing someone to do something major to something you own. They can screw it up in the blink of an eye, and charge you good money for it in the process. A bad mechanic just killed my car and then went out of business, and I had to get to work, so now I'm paying for a new car I didn't want. You're right about minimalism, but at some point you have to buy something, either product or service. Just remember it's your money, so you can be as big as a PITA about determining the quality of what you're buying as you want before forking it over.
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Old 03-07-04, 08:04 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by randya
Wow, if there was a Luddite political party, it sounds like you would be a good candidate.
I wouldn't call myself a Luddite. Don't get me wrong, I believe in technology and advancement. I just don't want to have to depend on it unless I have to.
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Old 03-07-04, 08:32 PM   #13
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I wouldn't call myself a Luddite. Don't get me wrong, I believe in technology and advancement. I just don't want to have to depend on it unless I have to.
I admit I was being facetious. My main complaint is that no one ever seems to ask whether we really need all this newfangled stuff? I'm still fine with a hard wired phone and a record player, but we've got cell phones and CD players now, and today's cell phone has all these extra features like a built in camera and web access that cell phones two or three years ago didn't have. Plus, these days it's almost impossible to get an identical replacement - or even parts and repairs - for a good older product, because we've become so obsessed with 'newer and better', that almost everything today is obsolete almost as soon as it rolls off the assembly line...
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Old 03-07-04, 08:50 PM   #14
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I think maybe you were born in the wrong century?

Perhaps about 1800?

Things do mave fast nowadays, and, generally, I love it.

Hey, we wouldn't be able to communicate if someone didn't invent the computer - modem - phone lines - etc., etc.!

To be true to yourself, you need to get off of the internet!
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Old 03-07-04, 09:54 PM   #15
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Computers are useful tools to which I do not object, other than to the fact that perhaps we place to much faith in them. But, for example, IMO, it's questionable whether Bill Gate's software is as useful or necessary as the personal computer hardware is.
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Old 03-08-04, 12:24 PM   #16
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I tell my wife all the time, "My cellphone is a convienience for me, not everyone else in the world; therefore it remains in my bag, turned off, until it is convienient for me to use it".

I tell folks at work, "No, I will not run the SameTime (instant messaging) client on my PC, as I am not interested in creating more efficient ways to interrupt me, while working on my PC. If you wan't to be rude, you will have to do it in person"

I am not interested in video games or virtual reality. I have real reality instead. BTW this is the same reason I don't watch much TV.

Technology is a two edged sword. It is only beneficial if you decide to make it so.

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Old 03-08-04, 12:51 PM   #17
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this is a great thread.....

I see some of my friends going for all the new gizmos and stuff. They have the newest color PDA that gets a cracked screen, or a new car with a navigation system that won't even help you get around the block, or satellite stereo that is costing them an arm and a leg....

In the mean time I am sitting back driving a ten year old car, paying my mortgage down, investing, (with a few nice purchases here and there - uh, I do have a bad bicycling habit) and hope to retire by the time I am 55 or 60. Who needs those gizmos anyhow when I will be lounging in the sun, reading a book, or hiking the forest of Oregon?
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Old 03-08-04, 03:58 PM   #18
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Thank you Danr, I thought only my life sucked but you have put it into perspective.
You or other members should rant like this more often...it beats anti-depressants.
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Old 03-08-04, 06:21 PM   #19
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this is a great thread.....

I see some of my friends going for all the new gizmos and stuff. They have the newest color PDA that gets a cracked screen, or a new car with a navigation system that won't even help you get around the block, or satellite stereo that is costing them an arm and a leg....

In the mean time I am sitting back driving a ten year old car, paying my mortgage down, investing, (with a few nice purchases here and there - uh, I do have a bad bicycling habit) and hope to retire by the time I am 55 or 60. Who needs those gizmos anyhow when I will be lounging in the sun, reading a book, or hiking the forest of Oregon?
Agreed. It sounds like we have a few things in common. My wife and I live WAY below our means with the goal of an early retirement, but we don't mind spending a little every now and then. That is the sad thing. I don't buy much, but when I do, I save for it, then buy it. It seems like 75% of the time, I am disappointed with what I bought. Basically, I buy into the hype, but I'm cheap (and I'm ok with that), so I have this conflict thing going on. Buyer's remorse.

Thanks to all. In a big way, this help me put things into perspective and I feel much better about the crappy things I own.
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Old 03-11-04, 03:56 PM   #20
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danr,

Remind me not to stand next to you in a lightning storm.
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