Wednesday, April 20, 2011

I Just Want a Pan That's Still Round!

My pans are warped. Sure, I've had them for about 15 years. But, they are pans for goodness sake! They are made out of a fantastic steel and about 10 other metal derivatives, according to the sales pitch I received when I bought them. How do they warp?

I remember washing the pots and pans at my parent's house as a child. They were so bright and shiny with their copper bottoms...nothing fancy or ultra or improved about them. I'm sure they were the basic model at the time that my mom and dad married, more than 55 years ago, since they were a wedding gift.
Revere Copperclad Bottom 1-Quart Covered Saucepan
My mom was famous for burning the vegetables at dinnertime. So, these pans were sure to have a few scars from that abuse. But, they sure weren't warped. The lids fit. And, they were still in my mom's kitchen several years ago when we emptied her house after her death. I wonder where they are today...

My fantastic arsenal of cookware was the finest my money could buy at the time. I remember how proud I was of their heavy duty weight and clear, shatterproof lids. I bought all the requisite accessories -- spoons, spatulas, a giant fork, and even a coated whisk -- to prevent any ruptures in their fine, non-stick, Teflon skin.

And yet they warped!

The manufacturer said that they could be washed safely in the dishwasher. Sometimes I took them up on this luxury. Other times I washed them by hand.

I asked a manufacturer's representative about this anomaly. It was suggested that I shouldn't have placed them in the dishwasher. And, after all, they are almost 20 years old! Luckily they have a new series of pots and pans to offer me that are even more improved and fantastic than those I owned!

It's not just these darn pans, which my family will continue using until they literally fall apart. It seems to be a trend in manufacturing today. Shiny wins!

I enjoy sparkly new as much as the next person. But, honestly, I'm getting a little perturbed by the underlying theme that I'll be too distracted to notice that manufacturers are crafting and selling crap at premium prices. I don't shop at a dollar store, and I expect my purchases to reflect that.

Will it help if I start packaging up all the "stuff" that I've purchased that fails to live up to even its miniscule warranty? I'll send it back to the goofball product managers who built their projections for merit increases on immediate sales and not long-term brand commitment and satisfaction.

Is there a single consumer products brand out there that cares about what they make beyond squeezing it into the smallest possible packaging to maximize shelf-space? If yes, please point them out to me. I'm waiting...with my warped pans in hand!