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Friday, October 29, 2010

How we add things to our houshold.

It was a Saturday evening. My son, a very bright mechanical engineer had come for the weekend and just wanted to go out for dinner. On the way he asked his mother whether we can buy a microwave oven.

From the driving seat I replied that an offer like this should never be made to ladies since there is absolutely no likelihood for a ‘No’.

One could guess what could have been the reaction. My son started feeling that I am a little old fashioned and a hurdle in modernising the kitchen. My wife didn’t want to loose the pride of owning a microwave oven.

I tried to reason out my objections for two reasons.

1.Since the demand for the oven had not come from the lady who is supposed to use it, there is every likelihood that the equipment may not receive the attention that is required to put it to effective use.

2.I have not made any literature survey about this technology and do not have information about the mechanism, the advantages, the power consumption, the running cost and finally the effect on our health.

As a seasoned marketing professional I knew that many times the decision to buy a product is impulsive and rarely is it based on critical evaluation.

Now the impulse was there, the electronic money was ready and I was only asked to help in the selection process. I drove to a popular shop. As usual I could get a parking slot about half a kilometre away.

In the shop a number of makes were considered and finally we bought a machine which had all the features namely Convection, Grill and Microwave cooking.

A tri-cycle rickshaw puller was summoned to carry the carton containing the oven and the cookware to the car. The boy was smart and since I always enter into conversation with any one around ( more of listening than talking), he felt comfortable talking to me. He asked about the content in the cartons he carried. He recalled some sales guy’s sales talk that this is capable of cooking within minutes. Finally he asked me one single logical question,

‘Sir, since the cooking is very fast, will not the cooked food pose health hazards?’

I replied “I have not thought about it for the simple reason that this concept is used in developed countries. More over I don't think it is going to be used daily. Just for the pride of owning a Microwave oven we have bought this.”

For the question he posed, I gave Rs.5/- extra as tips and made him happy. I became thoughtful about the ovens utility.

After 1½ years, I recall that there has been very few occassions we made use of this equipement.

Is this how we add up things to our house. This leads me into an endless thinking on how much of materials people buy to feel proud rather to use.

Do you also want to be a proud owner of a Microwave oven like me ?