I walked up to the counter of the local convenience store and set my item on the table. I mindlessly pulled out my wallet and reached for a $20 knowing that the $8.99 can opener would be more than the ten-spot I had once the taxman (woman?) got involved.
The reply was unwavering. It wasn’t a suggestion. It was a command. I looked up and didn’t know what to say.
You don’t want that one. It sucks.
I still didn’t know what to say. The kind clerk grabbed my can opener, threw it in a bin and crossed the store to a dusty bin in the back.
This is better. Three dollars.
I’ve never forgotten that transaction. Never forgotten how such a small, yet kind, gesture that was. The gentleman guiding me owned the store and choose a cheaper item that he thought was better. He believed in the $3 can opener (it’s also a bottle opener) and he saved me money. I followed his instruction (not that there was any other choice!)
It’s been almost 5 years. I still have the same can opener. It’s one of many I’ve owed in my lifetime (I’ve had ones with no-slip handles, ones with magnets, some that bolt to the counter and even an industrial unit at our hunt camp) and I’m confident it’s the best.
Reasons I think my can opener is awesome:
- It’s metal. Durable. Will last a long time. And then it’s recyclable. But, even after 5 years it shows no sign of slowing down.
- It works. It’s never failed, never slipped nor broke.
- It’s easy to use. Some of my others needed an instruction book to figure out. Literally. For a can opener.
- It has a bottle opener. I know I mentioned that but it’s opened several beer for me and I will always thank it for that.
- It had no packaging.
- It was affordable.
- It works. I know I’ve said that twice but I’ve had $20 can openers that don’t.
I wish everything was made like this. And I think it’s important to share about the small things that make big differences in our kitchen; the latest gadgets can be fun but the tried and trusted tools of the kitchen have a special place in my heart.