When I was small (or smaller, at least. Sigh) and growing up in Ireland in the ’80s, there were certain things that impressed me greatly. For the most part they weren’t toys; they were household gizmos that we didn’t have at home but that I’d seen either in friends’ houses or on the telly and thought were flipping awesome. As a 7 year old I would have given my right arm for any of the following.
- I would have swapped every fancy paper in my collection for a Soda Stream.
- Ditto a treehouse. And a suitable tree in which to install one.
- I was truly madly deeply in love with spiral staircases (and tried to sell the idea of replacing our boring straight stairs with a spiral one to Mam and Dad by pointing out its space-saving benefits. Their stairs is still straight.)
- American-style side-by-side fridge freezers with integrated ice makers looked like the height of cool.
- It seemed absolutely crazy to me that we didn’t have an automatic carving knife and a non-human dishwasher.
A selection of dream appliances
When I wasn’t busy thinking household appliances we didn’t have were brilliant or measuring the kitchen to find a spot for a monster fridge, I was mounting occasional campaigns to introduce these items at home that never amounted to anything. I didn’t mind; I’ll just get them when I grow up, I thought.
Somehow – quite inexplicably – I’ve been able to resist the urge to get a Soda Stream and an automatic carving knife as an adult, but happily I do now have a mechanical dishwasher to call my own and I fecking love it.
What sort of stuff were you impressed by as a kid – high heels? Eyeshadow? Convertible cars? Polaroid cameras? Toasters? – and do you still think they’re deadly (or own any of them) now?