Posted by: travelrat | September 15, 2019

Things That Aren’t There Any More

The other day, I was tidying my bookshelves when I came upon a little book I’d almost forgotten about, to which, back in the late 90s, I’d contributed a couple of paragraphs. It was called Things That Aren’t There Any More … and it was about … well … things that aren’t there any more. And, I thought that this would make a good subject for my Sunday Post. Not, though, about things that have disappeared since I were a lad; you’d need all day to get through a list of those. But, things that went, almost without notice, in the quarter century since the book was published.

For some examples, I need go no further than my sitting room. The VCR is gone; video recording is now taken over by my cable box. If I forget to set the recorder, I can usually get the programme on catch-up, and I can pause or rewind live programmes. The CD player is also gone; my DVD player will also play audio CDs. I can even show off my holiday pictures on the TV, so no more albums, slide projectors etc.

It’s not so long ago that most cars came equipped with a CD player as standard. Not any more … but you can copy your favourite music on to a USB stick, and plug it into the socket on the sound system. There’s no cigarette lighter or ashtray on my car, either. I don’t smoke, but the ashtray did come in handy for keeping change for the parking meter. The lighter itself also made for a power point … but I think the USB socket can be used to charge your devices? I’m not sure; I haven’t tried it yet.

What saddened me most was the demise of my favourite publishing house. They had about half a dozen magazines under their wing, and I contributed regularly to most of them. Unfortunately, they got taken over by a bigger company, who promptly closed all their titles! But it was the cause of regular visits by the ‘cheque fairy’ … and who remembers cheques? Most incoming payment these days is made via PayPal or a bank transfer; for outgoing stuff, I usually use my debit card. I can’t say the last time I wrote out a cheque … in fact. I couldn’t say for certain where my cheque-book is!

I usually illustrate my posts with a photograph, but I can’t on this occasion … because the stuff’s not there any more!


  1. I still have a landline in the house – and I don’t know why. And there’s a phone book and yellow pages in the press underneath… They’ll be worth a fortune some day!!!!

    • I didn’t think they issued phone books any more! Waste of paper, in my case. I am, and most of my friends are ex-directory.

  2. Ah (from the other Marie). I still have a landline and use it all the time and I get fed up with mobiles that fade, drop connections and are unclear. Also, I have one in the kitchen, one in the living room and one in my bedroom so I can hear them at any time, unlike the mobile which is invariably somewhere else and can’t be heard. With you on the phone books, though. I look up any number I need online.

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