Jorge Villalobos
Ideas, technology and the occasional rant

Monday, September 26, 2005

I hate umbrellas so much

I've said it before and I'll say it again: umbrellas are one of the worst modern inventions I have ever used. I hate them. I absolutely hate them.
Their usability is terrible. They're uncomfortable to carry, and it's ten times worse when they're wet, because you cant' just put them in your backpack. Some umbrellas come with this kind of Teflon coating, but that doesn't last much. They turn into regular umbrellas in no time, and it's hardly worth the extra money. One would expect that something you pay for actually delivers. I don't know, that's just me.
They don't even cover you from the fucking rain! What the hell? Isn't that their sole purpose? A little wind and the whole thing goes to hell. You can tilt it and try to maximize its effectiveness, but that will only take you so far. Any decent rain will have you soaking wet from the knees down. That's if the damn thing doesn't break into pieces.
This leads me to my next point: umbrellas are made with such poor materials. They will bend and break like dry twigs. The whole reason for this rant is that the "metal" pole in my umbrella broke in two this morning. That's a first. Usually one of the "tentacle" thingies will bend or break, but this time it was the only part that I assumed to be stable. The last stronghold in a very poor defense has fallen.
The alternatives aren't very attractive either. I don't want to walk around dressed like a plastic bag. There was this creepy Asian variation that extends the umbrella almost all the way to the floor, but that sounds pretty dangerous. Tripping over seems very likely and you're pretty much trapped when falling. I guess humanity gave it its best shot.
And no, I don't have a solution. First of all, there might not be a solution at all. Assuming everything is solvable is the root of many of mankind's deficiencies. I tried to think of alternatives, but nothing realistic came to mind. I though about using heat or wind to deflect or vaporize the rain, but that will most likely deflect and vaporize other things, such as people.
I guess there's not gonna be any advancement in umbrellas in the near future, and I'll have to live with it. Still, I hate umbrellas, but I feel a little better (impending cold aside) after this rant. Nothing to see here, move along.

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