the state of things

 

In A House By The Sea With An Electric Kettle

by Douglas Lindsay - 18:17 on 09 April 2011

Just back from a week on Exmoor. Well, on the edge of Exmoor. By the sea. In a house with an electric kettle.


I like a kettle that sits on the stove and takes a while to boil and then whistles to let you know it's ready, forcing you to be on hand to turn it off. There's an aesthetic involved. Your cup of tea or coffee isn't coming instantly. You're going to have to wait for it. Patience.


No one has patience any more. When I'm king I'm going to ban electric kettles. Force people to be patient.


The Parent Currently Known As Mum spent the week fondling the electric kettle, and praising it as if it was one of her own children. Since getting home she has been looking darkly at our antediluvian kettle, sitting sombrely on the oven top, imagining it going to an untimely death.


The thing is, stove top kettles don't break down. They can't. They don't do anything other than hold water and boil. They speak of a simpler, slower life.


Forlornly, I wish all the world was a slow boiling kettle, and that nothing came easily. Everything comes easily in the fat and bloated western world. Live football; burgers; technology; a hundred and fifteen different types of coffee; new shoes.


Unfortunately there's probably no going back. Not without an apocalypse of some sort. Can't really lie in bed at night hoping for an apocalypse just so my wife appreciates the kettle. That would be extreme. Probably.


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