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Life with V by Valerie Spencer Becks
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Issue 11 - My Big Worry...
Life with V by Valerie Spencer Becks

‘Life with V’ – written by Valerie Spencer Becks from Belper.

Valerie or ‘V’ is well known locally for her beautiful wedding cakes but you will see that Valerie has an excellent talent for portraying her own take on everyday life in a most humorous manner...

My big worry about growing older is not that I won’t have enough money – I can always apply for benefits, not that I won’t have a house to live in – I can live on a park bench or apply for sheltered housing – not that the NHS won’t cover a life threatening illness while they are busy refusing to treat people to save a few bucks – I can always go abroad to get the treatment, not that I won’t be able to go grocery shopping – I can always order on the internet…..

No, my big worry is that I will starve to death or cause myself a serious injury trying to break into jars, packets, boxes and things that are wrapped as if expecting everybody to carry around a high powered laser beam that will cut through all of this packaging. It would be easier to break into Fort Knox me thinks.

I have just spent a few minutes trying to break into a particularly lethal dishwasher tablet – well it must be lethal otherwise it wouldn’t be so necessary to seal it as if it contains something extremely dangerous or valuable. After having loaded a dishwasher one usually has wet or damp hands – making it impossible to get into the wrap on the dishwasher tablet without the aid of a knife or pair of scissors.

Now I know there will be those of you who will say well using a pair of scissors would be easy. That would be those of you who have a maid. After having loaded the aforementioned dishwasher, you have, as I’ve said, got wet or damp hands. Not only are your hands wet or damp but they have just loaded dirty dishes into the dishwasher. The scissors needed to break into this little package are in the kitchen draw. You can’t wipe your hands on a tea towel because they have potentially got dirt on them from having loaded the dishwasher, so you have to now stop, wash your hands, dry your hands and then get your scissors or knife out of the draw. All this to open a dishwasher tablet.

Then yesterday while I was driving up to Matlock I bought a packet of mint imperials because I always keep a packet in the glove box and the other had run out. I again assumed it would be easy to open this – WRONG.

I pulled up to the traffic lights at the ongoing road works on the A6 and thought it would take me half a millisecond to pop open the mint packet, plop them into the bag and put in glove compartment – WRONG. After breaking three teeth and four fingernails I can only assume the mints have the same lethal ingredients as the dishwasher tablet. There was no way could I get into this packet so again I had to resort to getting my manicure set out to cut into the mint imperials.

Then when I get home I had to open a jam jar. WEEELLLLL if I thought the first two were difficult, they were nothing compared to this jar. I banged it on it’s bottom, hammered around the edge of it with a knife supposedly make it easier, put it in hot water, put it in cold water, used a rubber grip pad thingy but no it would not give up it’s contents. I then had to go sit down with a cuppa for a minute or two because I was at this point ready to hurl it against the wall – not that I am prone to violence but STREUTH I only have so much patience.

Anyway I then went back to hammering around the edge of the lid with a knife which finally worked and I was able to access the contents. Now I know that all you health and safety mad PC people will be in-drawing your breath in horror that I have hammered around the edge with a knife as it may cause small fragments of glass to enter the jam.

Well I’m not overly concerned frankly because I am convinced I shall die of a heart attack from trying to break into my groceries long before that potential glass gets a hold. And I know you are not supposed to use a pair of manicure scissors when you are driving to open a packet of mint imperials and nor should I have to but I wanted a mint imperial and was not going to give in. And I know that I should have been prepared to wash my hands and dry them in order to get the scissors out to get into my dishwasher tablet but what a lot of pfaffing about when it should simply just not be that difficult to open a packet.

I do realize that the reason for all this is because all these boxes, packets, jars are sealed by robots and machinery that now run our factories. Unfortunately I don’t have a robot here that has the strength that the factory robot has to open it again. It really is a worry. And don’t even get me started on trying to open a CD!!!


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