Chopped Liver – How I Wrote P-lastic Man

I’m still here.

Still alive.

Still feeling grreeaatt!!!

And still moaning.

Went to Whipsnade Zoo at the weekend. Went with Wee D, Canny K and his two boys. It was a lovely day (bit of advice if you go there with young kids – take scooters! they all have them).

As you know it’s nice for kids to come away at the end of the day with a little gift – a little toy – just to round off the day and give the kid something to remember the day by – oh, and to play with on the way home.

But there was a time, was there not, when you could go into a gift shop and select the quality from the tat? Not any more. Not at Whipsnade. I have never seen such a pile of kak in all my days.

And what they charge for this kak? Unbelieveable. A piece of plastic rod with a plastic animal head on it.

£3 to you sir?

No, not 3.

How about £4?

No. Not 4.

£5? Nope, not even £5. This is your lucky day sir.

What, you mean £6? Hey, since it’s you sir, I’ll add a little bit more on top – £6.50 to you sir.

Wee D – I am not paying £6.50 that piece of rubbish. So he starts picking up other things to see what else he could have. £6 for a crappy plastic car. Corgi? No. Dinky? No. Matchbox? (I really am showing my age). No, these are Made In China.

That well known make that is on the bottom of every last piece of garbage in this shop. £1.75 for an eraser? Yeah, right.

You know I think maybe Wee D realised what a load of rubbish it all was – he genuinely seemed to struggle to find anything he really thought was worth either a) pestering me for or b) more than two pence.

Which leads me to one of my persistent bugbears in life. That of the continual demand for cheapness over quality. It happens in all walks of life. In business especially. There was a time where you could go to the stock room in the office (yes, there was a time when an office had a stock room) and pick, say, a pack of Post-It Notes. That was until Mr Supplier came along and asked Mr. Purchase Manager how much he pays for his Post-It Notes. Mr. Purchase Manager says “x”. Mr Supplier say “x divided by 2” and voila! Mr. Supplier gets a new client (he’s happy), Mr Purchase Manager saves money (he’s happy) and Mr User is totally hacked off ‘cos the replacement to the Post-It Notes does not do what a Post-It Note should do – STICK.

And the same goes for the pile of kak to be found in many shops up and down the land, toy shops, Stationers and Gift Shops,  like the one at Whipsnade Zoo. Mr. Purchaser at Whipsnade Zoo says – why pay “x” for a piece of kak to be sold at “10 times x” when you could pay “half of x” and sell at twice the price?

"heh heh, who's laughing now?"

In short, we don’t get the choice of quality anymore. It’s tat or nothing. We have to accept that. As long as there’s a massive country like China willing to exploit its own workers by crowding them into sweat shops for meagre reward and as long as there are western countries willing to choose cheap over quality and as long as there is a significant and silent world populace willing to purchase the tat (except me) (on this occasion at least) then the equation will stay the same.

The question is – can the tat get even worse? Or have we reached the nadir?

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6 Comments on “Chopped Liver – How I Wrote P-lastic Man”

  1. Denise Says:

    So glad that you are doing well. I’m in touch with others that aren’t having the same recovery as you.
    But I am still (impatiently) waiting!

  2. Ken Says:

    Glad I skipped the shop then!


  3. Lee Baker Says:

    Strange that I had the same experience at Newquay Zoo
    didn’t buy anything though, great idea making you have to walk through the “shop o crap” to exit the Zoo.
    Like you I’ve had a couple of issues, Toxyplasmosis to name one, but my Biliruben has made it down from 380 to 18, which is great. I’m white again. To be honest they thought the new liver was damaged beyond repair, but they were wrong. I have a great faith and I believe that my God was working hard to restore me.
    I enjoyed my first holiday a week in Cornwall at the end of last month which I managed to drive all the way to without feeling knackered. I like others have been so well I almost forgot about your blog. Soz speak soon.

    • davidkallin Says:

      Hi Lee – great to hear you’re doing so well. I feel the same. I feel so well I get scared if I think I’m through it all that I’ll come back to bite me with a dose of rejection or something. I have been and still am very positive about the whole thing – sometimes I have to pinch myself – but I am still not ready to climb up the tallest building and shout that I’m all done.
      Question is – when will I feel able to feel it?

      • Lee Says:

        Well I got a biopsy now a little CMV infection but still feel 100%. I guess they just love having us back in when they can. Cos we’re funny guys!

  4. davidkallin Says:

    Shame Lee. They must have been missing you. At least you know that CMV is easily treatable – you’ll be back out menacing the world again in no time.

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