If only I had noticed ____ was disposable earlier.

Having grown up with parents subconsciously passing down morlals learned during the depression, I have a natural tendancy to never throw anything thing out. I just keep on using things even after my quality of life is worsened by still using them even becausei just never entered my mind to consider replacing them. It’s not a matter of consciously not buying another one, it just never occured to me that I can, even if it’s failry cheep.

  1. Non-stick teflon pans. I was given my grandma’s old cast iron pans, which are great to cook in. But I had the subconcious idea that pans are forever because of it. I have screwed up so many eggs by cooking in an old, worn down teflon pan that had no teflon left . One day I noticed these damn things are on sale for 8 bucks in the Clearance end-aisle of Target. I can just get a new one every 6 months.

  2. Pillows. I have very wide shoulders and sleep on my side. I spent most of my life getting very bad sleep piling up four and five pillows, trying to balance a stack of doubled-over pillows, secret-house-hold-hints crap like putting them in a dryer with a shoe, or trying to de-weave cotton knots for hours. I finally realized I can get two extra-thick, extra-firm pillows every 6 months for 10 bucks and not have to worry about all that crap, or my tower disinigrating and having a welded-stiff neck in the morning.

Anybody else suddenly realize one day that they are still using something crappy that they hate that could easily be replacedfor dirt-cheep if they had only thought about it earlier?

One doctor’s office I worked in would make us save the covers for the otoscope that the doctors stuck in people’s ears. We’d soak them in Zephiran in a little jar, and there’s be pieces of earwax and dead skin floating in there. Ew. At the office I work in now, I get a little thrill every time a doctor throws one away after using it the first time.

Home phones. The batteries for them, which last a couple of years, are more expensive than the phones themselves. It feels weird to just throw away a perfectly good phone that’s only a couple years old, but I do it.

Plastic shower curtains. Mold, mildew, soap scum… Oh wait, they’re $2.86 at Target. Now I throw it out and buy a new one about every 6-9 months. Costs less to replace than it does to buy cleaner for it.

Screw drivers. My father would try to keep them after they would get dinged up (especially Phillips) and we would always be having to hunt around for the good ones.

When my friend helped me remodel my other’s house, I was surprised to see him buy a dozen or so. They’re cheap and you always misplace them, so it’s not worth spending all afternoon looking for them.

Condoms. The amount of time I’ve wasted turning them inside out afterwards to wash {handy household tip: never use oven cleaner}, rinsing them, hanging them out to dry, then relubricating them {another handy household tip: never use WD40}. Not to mention the weird looks I got from the neighbours.

Paintbrushes. All that titting around with white spirit. I wash them if I’m painting with something water based, otherwise, they get wrapped in a plastic bag to keep them wet for the second coat, then they go in the bin.

Women. The one I had was all raggedy and peevish, and didn’t work as had been promised on the box. If only someone had told me that I could discard and upgrade! I figured it out myself after a couple of years, but wish I hadn’t been so slow to figure it out.

Pens. My mom had mugs full of pens near the phone. Ninety percent of those pens only worked if licked first, held under a certain angle and after twenty- three practice scratching circles. And my mom would put each of those pens back in that mug after “use”. Writing down a phone number in our house was a matter taking several minutes and a lot of curses muttered under the breath while trying to find a working pen.

When I now get such a barely usable pen (and with my fiance’s stuff having been moved to our new home, I have been getting them a lot lately) I inwardly yell: “You’re fired !” at the unwilling pens and throw them in the bin where they belong.

With my fiance moving in, I find myself having doubles of a lot of stuff. Last night, for instance, the two electric lighters near my gas stove, that had been there for two weeks started to bother me. I considered keeping two lighters near the stove, but, since empty and usable kitchen work top surface is at a premium, decided to toss the superfluous lighter in my permanent “drop off at goodwill”- bin.
Yes, I might need to replace the lighter somewhere in the next five years. But do I want to store my fiance’s lighter all those years, having to make a constant mental note that I still have a spare lighter? Sorry, my empty and usable mental capacity is even more at premium currently then empty kitchen-worktop surface. I’ll buy a new one for 9 dollars when I have to.

Not disposable, but… I had a skirt that I loved, until the hem fell down. I don’t sew, so I’d keep trying to fix it back up with fabric glue or staples or whatever. Finally, one day I took it in to a sewing shop to be repaired, and the repair was only six bucks. :smack:

I just did this about 6 months ago. New battery for old phone = $30. New phone = $20. It did feel weird.

And wolfman, you shouldn’t have to throw out a Teflon pan every 6 months. Buy a couple plastic or silicone utensils (also cheap) and use only those with the Teflon pan. Using metal spatulas, etc. is what scrapes the Teflon off. I have a non-stick frying pan that’s at least 15 years old, so I know following that one simple rule works really well. And it’s the cheapest thing to do! :stuck_out_tongue:

If a teflon omelette pan is degrading that quickly, it might be because it’s being overheated (also not a good thing at all if you have pet birds - the fumes are highly dangerous to them)

During the months when my son was mostly potty trained, I washed out several pairs of little-boy underwear in the sink. One day it dawned on me that the underwear came in three-packs for $8, and I started throwing them away.

I am onboard with the shower liner idea. I felt like such an idiot for trying to clean it when I saw a big stack of them at the dollar store. Same with floor mats. Trying to clean something that is for wiping your feet is a bit annoying anyway but when you can get carpet pieces for a few dollars, it really isn’t worth the effort.

The big ticket item was a clothes dryer. The repairman wanted a couple of hundred bucks to fix a ten year old dryer and I was able to replace it for about one hundred dollars more than the price to repair it.

A huge ditto on the pillows. I think perhaps parents replace these on their own bed, but not on kids’ beds. Thus, kids think that, since they used the same pillow from the time they left the crib until the time they left for college, that pillows last forever.

Damned right. The first time I walked into Target and realized that new pillows cost on average something like $8 I now get new pillows every few months.

I don’t use metal spatulas. For me It’s not the cooking that de-nonsticks them, It’s the cleaning. Whether sponged, or just thrown in the dishwasher, the stuff just eventually wears off.

Oh, I do this with so many things! My husband is always pointing out that I don’t need to keep using the same old Teflon pan or those hideous cookie sheets, and we can just get new ones for a few bucks. Happens all the time.

You know…I have growed up and bought my own pillows. Something like $12 for two.

And it didn’t occur to me until you guys just pointed it out JUST NOW that they are only SIX DOLLARS APIECE and I can toss them out!

Wtf? I am calling my mother to complain! (Harriet The Spry is right on)

Barf. Oh, eeewww. I just assumed it was SOP to get a new one each time. I feel queasy.

I do this too, and I have been known to toss whole outfits as well if they are cheap ones. $3 onesies or whatever after a diaper blowout. I have to be careful about who is around when I do this though, because I have gotten comments from people about how wasteful I am, “It must be nice to be so well off that you can throw clothes away”, etc. Look, would you clean this thing if I paid you $3? Didn’t think so. Of course I save them if they are just a little dirty, but sometimes it is just not worth it.

I also have thrown out cheap plasticware from the back of the fridge. If it’s good tupperware I am more likely to save it, but I have mostly switched to the take-and-toss things and I have no reservations about the “toss” part there.

I replace pillows about once a year, but I do get ones that are a few steps above the cheapo bin kind. They usually run about $30 on sale.

Dishtowels, bath towels and washcloths need to be replaced after a while too. Wait for a white sale and buy some more. I swear my mom just now replaced the towels we have had since I was born.