Startup: How Fantastically Meta

Back to basics...

I’ll be honest here; I had no idea about what to write today for Startup. I played on some random websites, looking for inspiration, and nothing really reached out at me. There’s a ton of stuff in the news about the space shuttle, all of which is very cool, but let’s face it, engineerd is far more suited to write about that than I.

Then I stumbled across this photo in my iPhoto  library. My parents had a toaster like this when I was growing up, and it never… quite… worked the way we wanted it to. That’s not to say it didn’t toast bread, but it was such a hit-or-miss process, I could never help but wonder why on earth they insisted on keeping it. Now that I’m older, I think I understand. There’s a certain charm to old appliances, or old technology, or old gadgets like this. Perhaps they don’t work quite as well, perhaps they’re not as reliable, and perhaps they’re not as convenient. But at the same time, if they still work, perhaps they’re also worth that little extra effort.

Funny, that’s almost exactly how AtomicToasters was started in the first place.

It’s the circle of life, right there. I expect Elton John to burst in here singing at any moment.

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  • chrystlubitshi

    f*ck toasters*. i have had so many different models and types… when i finally find one i like, something shorts out or dies within a few weeks… and the replacement parts make it as crappy as any other toaster. When i dial in 3 toast, i want 3 toast dammit.. not 5 toast. not 1 toast. 3 toast. so… umm… now i butter my bread and fry it in a pan on the stove. perfect toast every time (*this is a bit of a 'hotspot' for me. gadgets that "make things easier" that don't make things easier are not cool.)

    • aastrovan

      f*ck toasters* ? how shocking !

      • chrystlubitshi

        i realize that that comes across in a number of different was. I love this site– so not EFF AT. I like toast. and i don't think anyone has yet invented a "F*ck Toaster" and for safety reasons. i hope they don't. and yes, it'd be a *shocking experience* (why can't mr. fork and ms. outlet be friends?)….. back to my original statement. F*ck toasters. i'll fry my bread.

        • RichardKopf

          Toaster oven. You need one.

      • ZomBee Racer


        • mdharrell

          Ladies and gentlemen, the one and only "Sparky" Pete.

          • Deartháir

            I always wondered how he got that nickname…

    • OA5599

      We have a toaster oven at home, and the toaster oven before that was from the 80's. At any rate, my kid likes to top his bagels with cream cheese or whatever before toasting it, so all the good stuff melts into the bread.

      A few weeks ago we were at a hotel with a breakfast buffet. They had toast-your-own bagels, and a toaster. Guess who had never used an old school vertical toaster before but put the toppings in sideways anyway?

      • chrystlubitshi

        my parents didn't believe in toaster-ovens….. I have carried on that same line of thinking. if i'm gonna get something that hot, then i'm going to do a full cookie sheet worth of toasty goodness.

        a friend gave me a toaster oven once… he used it to make mini-pizzas every time he came over to party… so… essentially…he brought over the only cooking device he knew how to use because he passed out at my place at least 3 nights a week…. it wasn't used unless he was the pilot…..

        • mr. mzs zsm msz esq

          Long time ago I tried to make microwave pop corn in a toaster oven. That worked about as well as when I tried to boil an egg in a microwave later.

          • chrystlubitshi

            i have found that aluminum (or aluminium) foil properly shaped over the correct heat source can accomplish anything— camp-fire-steamed broccoli. yes. soft boiled eggs yup. cheesey fondue. mmmm yes. F*ck microwaves… (though… they're great for re-heating….. and well… getting f*cked isn't that much of an insult……. is it?)

          • Number_Six

            One night about eleven years ago my microwave sailed off my ninth-floor balcony and I haven't so much as thought about getting another one since.

          •!/jjd241 jjd241

            We had been using the same microwave for nearly thirty years. Whenever the "kids" come over they say "why not get a new one, this old thing takes too long". Yeah, it takes three minutes to warm that cup of soup instead of one. It had a dial and two settings (defrost and cook). It was gloriously simple. Well, it finally went out in a shower of sparks the other day. Sure the new one was cheap enough. Sure it warms that soup in four seconds. But it's also got twenty buttons, fourteen settings and a clock that will probably be blinking for as long as the one on my Beta-Max has been. Oh well, time for a cup of soup.

          • mr. mzs zsm msz esq

            What a great comment! I miss the old microwave with the dial, it was so simple to use. The bell was a real bell too (dinggggg!), not some annoying electronic beeper that is infuriatingly repetitive until you open the door, yes in my case to just close it right back again, cause you know "caution contents are hot" grumble. There's at least one person on this site that still has one. Enjoy the soup.

          • Deartháir

            Ah, the old Radiation King microwaves. I miss mine…

        • P161911

          Toaster overs are good for warming up stuff that doesn't warm up good in the microwave (most fried stuff and pizza). A toaster oven heats up in half the time of a regular electric oven. Also good for hot open faced sandwiches. I might use my toaster oven 3 or 4 times a year.

    • discontinuuity

      [youtube 2biEN-BiM1Y youtube]

      • chrystlubitshi

        yes. yes. yes. eddie izzard. yes.

        • Deartháir

          I second that. Eddie Izzard is the first comedian who has actually made me have to pull over while driving because I was laughing so hard.

  • CardboardTube

    AH! I have one of those at the lake that I was going to use for my "Stuff from my…" post. Thief! Meh, good post.

    • Deartháir

      Well if you hadn't taken so damn long…!

  • chrystlubitshi

    i am already on the waiting list to join.

  • FuzzyPlushroom

    I. Cannot. Wait.

    • aastrovan

      Rule 34

  • Deartháir

    C'mon, Old Yeller! Let's go for a walk out to the field, boy!

    • dmilligan

      Now that's cold, man.

      • Deartháir

        Oh you know I kid because I love.

        • dmilligan

          Yeah, you'll be old and forgetful someday, and have trouble concetra… oh look, a squirrel…

          • chrystlubitshi

            first few times i read that i read "concerta" not the cut off of concentration…. it still made sense……

          • dmilligan

            Well, I try to be Mr. Subtle, but I'm afraid I'm not _that_ good.

          • chrystlubitshi

            well then mr. subtle…. i will still give you credit… but i won't mention it to anyone— for subtlety's sake.

  • tiberiusẅisë
  • MrHowser

    You are making your toast too dark. I like mine just slightly browned – slightly lighter than the perfect s'more marshmallow.

  • texlenin

    See: The Secret Aunt Jemima Project

  • texlenin

    Ah. Now I understand why your eyes were glowing
    in that earlier photograph….
    Makes sense now.