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  1. #1
    Renato Piereck
    Spreading the Saab virus rpiereck's Avatar
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    American crap is better than German crap

    Just a rant, but I came to the conclusion that American crap is better than German crap. For the past two weeks my wife and I have been looking for a small, inexpensive but decent food chopper, and we just can't find one!

    First of all, a small intro. I am American, and I am living in Germany temporarily. Our whole household good came with us to Europe but we can't use most of it, because 1) it's all 110 volts, while Germany runs 220 volts; and 2) German kitchens are tiny, like they don't cook at home, and our American electrodomestic appliances are kinda big for our kitchen. If I were to use a step down transformer to power my 110v stuff with a 220v outlet I would need more space in the kitchen for the transformer. Not happening.

    So what are we to do? We don't want to spend a lot of money on 220 volt stuff, because in two years we're moving back to the US, where we can use our 110 volt stuff, or to Korea, where we can buy 220 volt stuff of very good quality. But not here!

    In America where do you go to buy cheap appliances? Head to Walmart of course! You can buy a relatively cheap appliance, that will do its job well and probably for a few years. Not the latest and greatest, not the fanciest or the prettiest, but it will do its job well. Our current 100v chopper, bought at Wally World costs us maybe $25 in Alaska.

    Well, here in Germany there is no such thing. Last week we went out looking for a food chopper, and saw a model that looked neat, it was small but not tiny, and it was hand operated, not a bad idea for a small kitchen with not enough outlets. It was 9 Euro, so we bought it and took it home.

    The next day I returned the crappy contraption. First of all, the sealed box was missing one of the chopping tools, I guess it was forgotten at the factory floor. And did the other chopping tool chop? No, it was almost dull, and would mix better than chopping. What a piece of crap, excuse my language. At least in America when you buy something crappy you can look at the box and see a MADE IN CHINA (or any other third world country) and have a focus to your anger. In Germany? No laws says manufacturers have to tell you were your cheap crap is made. China? Slovenia? Macedonia? Greece? Who knows? All the box says is "DESIGNED IN GERMANY". Well, big frigging deal, someone who flunked the Putenschnitzel School of Industrial Design designed this junk, and I foolishly paid 9 Euro for it.

    Today I was at a different supermarket (Edeka if you want to know) and I found another chopper, this one electric, bigger than the last, different brand, and 20 Euro. Must be at least twice as good, right? Wrong!! This one would chop, but had a very odd, complicated and stupid design with a lid that was very hard to remove, my wife basically had to use a kitchen knife to pry the lid open after using it to chop onions! Of course what did the box say? GERMAN DESIGN.

    Tomorrow I'll be getting my 20 Euro back from Edeka for this crummy gizmo. Then I am going down to the mall where they sell better known German brands like Braun and Siemens and will end up spending 30 or 50 Euro for a small food chopper that, well, chops. And isn't crap.

    Enjoy your cheap crap, America. It's better than other people's crap.

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  2. #2
    Dave T.
    Super Moderator Dave T's Avatar
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    The same thing happens in France. Small appliances are expensive and of low quality. If it is simple, like a knife or can opener, often it will have no company name or address. In the U.S., people may not notice, but everything has an address. It may be as simple as the white-out bottle that I'm looking at. It says "Bic, Inc., Milford, CT 06460". I wonder if this is required by law? I think it makes it more shameful if the quality of the product is poor.

    After living in France, I learned that European things are not always good. European things imported into the U.S. tend to be reasonably good.

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  3. #3
    Renato Piereck
    Spreading the Saab virus rpiereck's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dave T View Post
    In the U.S., people may not notice, but everything has an address. I wonder if this is required by law?
    Most likely consumer protections laws. Also good for litigation: that way lawyers know who to sue

    That'a another reason the cost of living here is higher, the stuff of decent quality is expensive. The cheap stuff is crap. The only thing that doesn't apply to is food, which is pretty reasonably priced here.

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  4. #4
    Jay
    Saab Addict Hirsch's Avatar
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    I can relate, after 2 years in Denmark.

    I can't get a US power cord for the Toshiba laptop we bought in Denmark and that Toshiba will not latch on to my wi-fi in America.

    Honestly, look for stuff made in Sweden.

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