Making things last and last and…

Consumer Reports News: February 04, 2008 09:08 AM

A staffer who's been reading old Ripley's "Believe It or Not!" cartoons recently noticed a common theme. Seems the late Robert L. Ripley had a fascination with people who got an inordinate amount of use out of everyday things.


"C. L. Bresee of Missoula, Montana has worn the same trousers 56 years."

"Susan R. Wright [of] San Diego, Calif., has worn the same bouquet of artificial flowers for 55 years."

And, our staffer's personal favorite: "M. I. Freind of Lynbrook, L.I. [N.Y.] used the same set of thumb tacks for 35 years—without losing one."

Believe it or not.

While Ripley's heyday roughly overlapped with the Great Depression (1929 to about1939), the impulse to make things last seems to be enjoying a revival in our own time, driven as much by environmental concerns as financial ones.

For tips from the CR Money Adviser on making today's products last, click here.

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