Two Old Codgers

How the World strikes us

THE BATH TAP

In the old days a bath tap was - well a bath tap was a bath tap. They sat in pairs at the end of your bath. Usually brass, solid and dependable like two brass Buddhas in white caps, one marked H and one marked C.

Unless the lady of the house suffered from compulsive cleaning disorder, they were not normally shiny and polished, more probably they would have what antique experts now call “the patination of age’ this was embellished with streaks of greenish blue which you vaguely knew was verdigris. You also knew it was poisonous but didn’t really care, after all who in their right mind would lick the bath taps.

These streaks would also stain the enamel of the bath as the water dripped during the other six days that the bath wasn’t used. The fire was always stoked up on Fridays so the back boiler would have plenty of water for the family baths. Friday night was also PT night (Physical Training) as a child you didn’t bother but when you asked your Mum and Dad what all the grunting and groaning was that came through the wall from their bedroom on Fridays, that’s what they told you.

So there you are,
lying in warm soapy water dreading the moment you would have to get out into an icy cold bathroom (these were the days before central heating). The bath taps sat there watching you as you played with your rubber duck or whatever other thing took your fancy. You might idly poke your toe into the tap until you remembered stories of people who got their toes stuck and firemen had to come, drain the water and saw the tap away to free the toe. Oh! The embarrassment! However, back to playing with the duck.

SO, WHAT’S TO THE POINT OF THESE RAMBLINGS?
Well, in those far off days
, replacing the bath taps would have been a rare occurrence. Perhaps if Grandma had to have her toe removed from the tap or some similar catastrophe occurred, there would be a need to buy a replacement. Then you would go the ironmonger. The sort of place where a flat capped, brown overalled man would deal with requests for “Four candles” or “Have you got any Os?”. In response to the much simpler request for bath taps, he might have produced two or three shapes and perhaps the choice of brass or chromium plated. Not any more! Now you would go to the DIY store or plumber’s merchant or, if you are rapidly moving into the twenty-first century, you might go on-line and buy from a supplier on the internet. This is when your life gets really complicated. A quick look at one of these on-line suppliers will show that there are at least three hundred taps to choose from - yes just one supplier lists over three hundred.


THE ULTIMATE TAP MUS
T BE THIS
This tap is inspired by the flow of water. A touch sensitive electric button is used to activate the filtered water. A green halo light glows when operational, and flashed red when the water treatment cartridge needs replacing”. Price? A mere £5,000.

Forgive the language but damn it you are not going out into space, you are going to have a ruddy bath !

The only conclusion I can reach is that the World has gone stone mad.

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