Sentimental tech 

18 August 2023


I broke the habit of a lifetime by taking a piece of tech to the tip today. Stuff like hi-fi separates, video recorders and DVD machines usually live on in my possession as museum pieces, sometimes being gifted with a second life.

A flatscreen tv set though is fairly uninteresting as a keepsake, rather impractical to keep hold of and difficult to get sentimental about, even if it was my first flatscreen set in 2008, a 50th birthday present from my parents, providing me with pleasure and entertaining me in my flat in the years before moving in with my partner.

Yep, you’ve guessed it, there was a slight lump in my throat as I laid it to rest among the other flatscreens that had kept their owners enthralled with hours of widescreen hi-def pleasures before being sidelined by an upgrade. A lady disposing of a computer monitor overheard me saying goodbye to my old telly and thanking it for providing me with some sort of sanity in the evenings as I relaxed with a beer after a day’s work, she seemed to get the gist of my sentiments as I briefly explained.

You see, I firmly believe that gadgets, devices, machinery (including cars) and musical instruments have a soul. They arrive in our lives often in hands full of excited anticipation at the new piece of kit to be played with. They provide us with years of fun (tvs, music systems, games consoles etc) or make our lives easier as they work with us in our creative moments (sewing machines, porta-studios etc), but then all of a sudden they’re replaced by something “better”. One day they realise they’ve not been switched on for sometime and they start to wonder why they’re not being allowed to come out to play anymore.

There were several other devices in those crates at the recycling centre this afternoon, all wondering what they’d done wrong and why their owners had cast them aside. Some of them of course were there because they weren’t working anymore, but it still doesn’t prevent them from contemplating their fate in their final days.

Happily the three video recorders sitting opposite me in the lounge (along with the other bits of retro kit around the house) can remain secure in they knowledge that all the time I’m on this Earth then so are they. Thankfully my next trip to the recycling centre will be with garden rubbish.


Geoff Nash is a Staff Editor at Transdiffusion


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1 response to this article

Ray Wilson 18 August 2023 at 7:36 pm

So very true…
I had to deal with my late father’s tech..

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