The Tools! The Tools!

The sight of a person long sunk in addiction is always disturbing…particularly when you glimpse it in the mirror.

I am not going to detail my slide to degradation, but I can tell of some of the key points. The first was the realisation that you could buy hacksaw blades on Sunday, if you wanted them. The local DIY centre was new then, and as the suburb was burgeoning, the big hardware firm decided to pay for Sunday trading. This was at a time when there were only two petrol stations in the metro area that opened on Sunday or after hours. They were on a roster and you had to drive for miles to get fuel. It would sometimes cost over $ 5.00 to fill the tank…

Well, when you went into the DIY centre they had aisles of tools and accessories, and you started out small with woodworking stuff. Gradually as your house got more complex and the mania grew upon you there was a steady progression to power tools. And expensive wood. And even-more-expensive paint. The sky was the limit and eventually you could rent scaffolds to tackle that.

And the shop got smart. They put a big island bench at the front of the store with all the shiny, complex, unnecessary power tools chained to it. The manufacturers helped sales by colouring things fluoro orange or green…like earthmovers or hi-vis clothing. Men are drawn to things that will cut your hand off when they are sold in bright colours.

I predict the next stage at our local will be air compressors and air tools. I have two compressors myself and am looking out for some legitimate reason to buy a chipping hammer or an air wrench. In a pinch I’ll accept an illegitimate one…

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