Searching for the Best in Little Things


I’ve written some pretty serious posts recently. Today I want to poke a little bit of fun at myself.

The older I’ve grown, the less materialistic I’ve become. No wonder. I’ve had more years to think about the fact that I can’t take it with me. As the old saying goes, “I’ve never seen a hearse pulling a U-Haul.”

So don’t expect me to take a round-the-world cruise, pay cash for a mansion, or test drive even the lowliest of Porsches. Occasional modest vacations and weekend getaways are wonderful, and my mobile home and Honda Civic are just right for me. Fortunately, my wife feels the same way.

One reason we enjoy having a mobile home (approximately 1200 square feet) is it keeps us from buying “stuff” we don’t need and don’t have room for.

Okay, so you understand by now that I’m not extravagant. I’ll probably never even own a better Martin or Taylor guitar than the ones I already have. Why fret about that? I’m blessed to have what I have, and I only get to play at a local nursing home, anyhow, and I feel all too much at home going there to do that.

But I do enjoy buying certain kinds of things. In fact, you might say I’m sometimes obsessed with the search for the most perfect of small items.

For example, years ago I decided it would be prudent to always carry a flashlight. (Except in the shower, of course.) It wouldn’t have to be the most powerful one on the market, but strong enough to help in an emergency. No telling how many small flashlights I went through in my search. I finally found two–no, I don’t carry both of them–at the local Bass Pro store.

I wear the larger one on my keyring and the smaller one on a lanyard around my neck during the night. Silly? Not with a dog, a cat, and pet toys that might be anywhere on a dark path to the bathroom.

Another small necessity was a pocketknife. As anyone who’s ever owned a Swiss Army knife can tell you, that’s a must, and I keep a small one in the man-pouch my wife knitted for me. This one has a blade, scissors, and a nail file. Plus tiny tweezers and a plastic toothpick. Can’t say I’ve ever used the toothpick for its intended purpose, but those tweezers are great!

The problem with carrying a knife that small, however, is that it’s not rugged enough for those occasional heavy-duty cutting needs. So a fair-sized Gerber pocket knife–also carried in the man-pouch–serves as a good supplement.

My only concern with these two knives is remembering to put them in the suitcase rather than having to surrender them at airport security. I’ve lost several that way.

My latest small purchase is a bit larger–but definitely not something to carry around.

No telling how many beard/mustache trimmers I’ve gone through in my lifetime. Some simply weren’t good enough. Others lost their charging power, while I threw away one recently that had never charged enough for a consistent cut. Not even when new.

That’s what got me searching for a cordless trimmer–and reading multiple reviews on Amazon before settling on one. My search ended with the discover of a Wahl Peanut (yes, it is appreciably smaller than most beard/mustache trimmers). Appreciably more expensive than the average trimmer, it came highly recommended.

My Peanut has proven itself consistently as well worth the investment.

My home may not have room for larger extravagances that I really have no interest in, but the little things I get a kick out of looking for the most useful of fit nicely.

Are you always looking for a better kind of something? How about telling us what in a comment?


I’ll be back again on Sunday. If you’d like to receive my posts by email, just go to “Follow Blog via Email” at the upper right.

“On Aging Gracelessly” isn’t my only blog. I post lyrics of the Christian songs I’ve written over the last fifty years on “As I Come Singing”–check it out HERE. Free lead sheets (tune, words, and chords) are available for many of them. View the list HERE.

My new novel, The Devil and Pastor Gus, is out now. If you’re interested, please check it out at Amazon.

Best regards,

9 thoughts on “Searching for the Best in Little Things

  1. Had to laugh when I read your post! My husband always carries his Gerber with him (has had to ‘surrender’ a few at the airport as well) and a mini torch attached to his key ring. All those who drive in my family also have mini torches attached to their key rings, courtesy of my husband. I have to admit that they get a lot of use!


  2. I live in Cape Town, South Africa. We were part of the Commonwealth from 1931 till 1961 (kicked out because of Apartheid) and were allowed to join again in 1994.
    Your comment reminds me of the differences various English speaking cultures have! As you observed a torch and flashlight are basically the same to me!
    I am married to an Irishman and in the beginning of our marriage we had some major ‘misunderstandings’ because his use and interpretation of a word was entirely different to mine!


  3. Noelene, I can only imagine those misunderstandings. *LOL* Yes, South Africa has quite a history, doesn’t it? BTW, I’ve emailed you c/o the address you have on your blog. Hopefully you’ve received it.


  4. Love how you managed to squeeze the word ‘fret’ into the paragraph about guitars… I’m not hooked on lots of things but the few I get ahold of are quality… I dislike cheap, chintzy, poorly engineered kitchen tools.
    I only use 3 knives in the kitchen. I have a great 10 inch chef knife, a nice scallopped knife for carving, and a bread knife: they do it all.
    Also, a few heavy duty stainless steel pots, a couple of cast iron skillets (Lodge) and some exquisitly engineered German cutting tools for specialty work with fruits and vegggies. Also, A french and Japanese mandoline. and of course, some heavy duty Kitchen-Aid thingys.
    These things will be around when I’m gone…


    • Wow, Tom. I’m impressed. But then again, you’re a professional. You need those things–and the cheapy ones just–pun intended–don’t cut it. *LOL* Incidentally, I’d missed my own pun about “fret” in the guitar paragraph.


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