Consumerism, Toxic Custard newsletter

The perfect, durable, compact umbrella

Melbourne's rainy season is upon us. It's been a few years since my blog post about good strong compact umbrellas, so here's a quick update. A good umbrella is vital for a dedicated walking/PT person. The brief: an umbrella that, folded, can fit in my work bag (eg a maximum length of about 35cm) and go anywhere. And -- this is the hard bit -- as durable as possible. Foldable umbrellas tend n

Consumerism, Toxic Custard newsletter

The umbrella wrapper

This is near the entrance to one of the local supermarkets. I understand what it is -- it wraps your umbrella in plastic -- I just don't understand why such a thing is needed. While it's nice to see them catering for pedestrians (since I'd assume few people coming from a parked car would bother with an umbrella), I have yet to see anybody actually use it. Seems to me if you arrive wit

Toxic Custard newsletter, transport

My precious umbrella is gone.

My precious Senz umbrella is gone. Left on the train to Frankston on Friday night. We'd had a delicious dinner at Shakahari in Carlton. Good food and laughs galore, and caught a tram back to Flinders Street. The train had just gone -- 20 minute wait, so we took a quick walk around Fed Square and the river. It started to rain, so the brolly came out. When we caught the 10:15 train, I put it u


I finally got a Senz umbrella

I finally bought the Senz umbrella I'd been covetting (ever since I took a look at one, courtesy of blog reader Flerdle). senz was started by three Dutch industrial design students that were frustrated with traditional umbrellas. The design challenge was to design the ultimate umbrella and eliminate all of the well known umbrella struggles that mankind has suffered from since the invention of t


Where can I get a strong, durable, compact, light umbrella?

Unbelievable. After less than a year, and less than a-dozen uses, the Shelta umbrella I bought last May has already broken. It's not totally unusable, but structural integrity has been severely compromised. I'll certainly be chasing up the 12 months warranty as soon as I can find the receipt, but in the mean time, what are some more robust alternatives? All I really want is something


Quest for the ultimate umbrella

Thankfully my umbrella was not in as bad a state as this one, but it was in need of replacement. And of course via procrastination it was only on Thursday, when it had been raining, that I got motivated enough to go out and look. This is in part because I'm a terrible shopper. Or rather, I'm a terrible buyer. But I decided I wanted to find out if there was some marvellous mega-brolly to