Monday, 22 April 2013

The crockery will go on

Yesterday at a Titanic exhibition, I was confronted by a set of nautical au graten dishes. Like more than fifteen-hundred souls, these dishes met with an unfortunate iceberg in 1912 and plummeted into the abyss.

Lifeless everlasting. 
The dishes did not break on descent, although the wooden cabinet that cushioned their fall quickly rotted away.

Time passed. Books were written and documentaries produced. The dishes formed no opinion whatsoever on the whopping blockbuster they had in small part inspired.

Then one day a robot reached into the deep and returned the au graten dishes to the light. They became very small artifacts in a very famous story, which of course didn't matter to them.

Yesterday, it wasn't the thought of cold water that resurrected goose-flesh on my arms. Rather, it was a pattern of burn marks on the bottoms of these dishes: the ghosts of where long-dead hands once warmed food in long-cold ovens.

Pointless material crap has such a cheeky habit of outliving humans. It does make you wonder why humans in all their brilliance and beauty are mostly obsessed with pointless material crap. In the future, perhaps only cockroaches, twinkies, and au graten dishes will remain.


  1. A Farmer's Wife22 April 2013 at 01:36

    I like this post.

    To me it is the everyday artefacts that I find most intriguing. I have my husband's grandmothers old cooking utensils and each time I use them I imagine her cooking for her family in her little house on their farm. There is a little connection there and it is very human.

    As to why we are obsessed with pointless material crap - I can never work that out (and I am a bit obsessed so am so not taking the moral high horse) - do you think in a hundred years people will be admiring my Ikea plates? Who knows.

    Hope all is well in your world. Take care.

  2. Thanks for the lovely comment :)

    Material things can indeed connect through generations - it's a good point. I have some china from a great-grandmother in my cupboard, that always makes me smile when I use it.

    I suspect several Ikea items will be there at the end times with the cockroaches and the twinkies....

  3. I have been dragging crockery (mostly coffee cups) around with me everywhere for years. I also have my Granny's old frying pan. Many many breakfasts were fried up in that pan. I believe that it will also be there at the end times along with IKEA plates, Twinkies, au gratin dishes... and yes, the cockroaches *shudders*

  4. Your Granny's old frying pan sounds like a noble dish, well worthy of surviving the apocalypse, and far too useful to be raptured out of any cockroach-infested kitchen...

  5. Bavarian Sojourn24 April 2013 at 08:24

    and the odd macdonald burger I should imagine! We found a royal copenhagen plate in our garden in DK. Just as well, as I never did get around to buying one... I did wonder about its past... :)

  6. The cheeseburgers will definitely outlive us...and possibly take over the galaxy.

    You can find some very cool stuff digging around in the garden...I found an old rocking horse in our acaquia a while back.

  7. EddieMcdaniel9 May 2014 at 14:53

    Wow!! I like that pair of saucer and cup which is beautifully designed with smart art work and colors as well. Recently I have seen the same pair on and they are offering very less price not even for cup and saucer but various dinnerware's as well. While seeing those prices I couldn’t wait and purchased some of the crockery immediately.