Appliance of the week

Readers should be aware that this feature may not be delivered weekly (though weakly is always a strong possibility) and may never be seen again.

The GofaDM regular with time on their hands and a fully functioning hippocampus/amygdala combo will recall my horror at discovering the “artisan kettle”.  I have subsequently discovered that this abomination has been joined by an artisan toaster.  This latter would only be acceptable were it an actual artisan (preferably clothed in some sort of livery) wielding a tined implement and with ready access to fire (for the avoidance of doubt, this was not the case).

Worse has since followed.  I have now discovered a wifi kettle (no that is not a typo, this kettle can access the web).  Why would a kettle need access to the internet?  Why would you need to command or interrogate a water-boiling device from your smartphone?  I’ll admit my atelier is quite modest in size so that I can physically touch my kettle within 15 seconds of the desire arising – but even if I lived in a 400 bedroom mansion, how much would I gain by discovering that a distant kettle was empty?  Or if not empty, how much time would I save by commanding it to start boiling now – so that its contents will be ready (or already be cooling) by the time I arrive?  Perhaps it is to check up on the servants – you can confirm that they are making excessive use of the kettle (and so must be skiving) and dock their wages appropriately?  Truly, society has jumped the shark.

I suppose this is just the beginning of the “internet of things”, where your fridge can re-order stuff you don’t want or need (but had finally managed to use up).  Actually, I can see some benefit to an “intelligent” fridge: it could warn you about items that you have forgotten which languish at the back of a shelf or in the bottom of the crisper, or when you are at the supermarket you could query whether the flat leaf parsley is still viable or has already passed to the great Herb Garden in the sky.  Sadly, nothing I have read suggests that such a useful, web-enabled fridge is on the horizon.

Whilst talking about appliances, I feel I should also comment on the hand-dryer – that mainstay of hack, observational comedy.  These now seem to fall into two broad types: those with airflow like a cold-blooded asthmatic in the last stages of fatal emphysema and those which hurl air with such force that your hands look like they are pulling about 9g (or 9G, if you prefer) and which are great at moving water from your hands onto your clothing (something I can do without the aid of an appliance).  However, it is the brand names that amuse me.  In recent weeks I have used an Excel Dryer – perfect for those with a wet spreadsheet, but would I need a Powerpoint Dryer for an overly moist presentation? – and a World Dryer which was massively overselling its drying capabilities, frankly it struggled with my hands (which whilst large-ish, are still dwarfed by the world).  I await my first sight of a Danny Dryer with keen anticipation!