For years I mourned the loss of my vintage can opener. I say vintage as in “old, very old, gunky.” It was a simple can opener with a bottle opener on one end and a little flip lever for jars on the other. I loved it. Could have been a family heirloom. It was so reliable for so many years, opened every can it got it’s sharp little teeth on. And then one day — it broke!
Friends recommended an electric can opener. No, I don’t open that many cans and, besides, the less electronic appliances I have on my counter, the happier I am. And, seriously now, what if the electricity went out and all I had to eat was a can of tuna? I like to be prepared.
I kept the broken can opener in my silverware drawer for the longest time. I thought maybe, just maybe, I can find a replacement. So I searched the stores. Big stores, little ma and pa stores, dollar stores . . . The simpler the better, that’s what I had and that’s what I wanted again.
I came across a lot of can openers during my shopping trips. I didn’t want a big clunky one. I didn’t want one that cut around the can so that the lid had no sharp edges. I finally found the one I wanted. The price was right. I took it home and when it was time to open a can my heart was pounding. It was a can of tuna. I was making Drew’s salad for lunch. I clamped down on the can and started turning the handle. I couldn’t get a good grip. The can slipped into the sink leaving a trail of stinky tuna oil everywhere. The handle was thin and slippery. I finally managed to open the can. It wasn’t easy. The next time I opened a can and every single time after that the same thing happened.
Can you believe the quality of all these cans? What’s going on? It took me a while to realize that it was the can opener, not the can that was crappy. I finally gave in. Off to Bed Bath and Beyond, me and my coupon, we went. I coordinated the trip with dinner with Sylvia. She was thrilled to meet me there. (She also came with coupons in hand.) I kept going back to the OXO Good Grips can opener.
I just didn’t want something so big. I picked it up and put it down several times. Then I picked it up and walked around the store. I felt comfortable embracing it. I was feeling good, good enough to buy it. And I’m glad I did!