Is Durability Overrated?

A thought on my mind: perhaps durability is overrated and something we don’t even care for. Yet durability is the new excuse for us to buy some thing, only to discard it and upgrade to something new.

For example, a lot of people make the justification that upgrading to an iPhone pro is a good “investment“ because it is so durable. however, in a world where the iPhone is getting upgraded what feels like every six months to a year, do you really want to even stick with the same iPhone for that long?

For example, I see the iPhone pro is hugely overrated. Why? You don’t want a durable iPhone. You just always want the best iPhone. Thus durability is not important. Then comes the qualm:

How do you justify always upgrading to the brand newest iPhone every generation?

When is durability good?

Probably the best investment I’ve made was buying these titanium Lindberg glasses. at the time in perhaps 2010, I spent about $700 on them. Yet even today almost 11 years later, they still look great, and haven’t eroded yet.

Thus perhaps my first theory is that it is good to spend a lot of money on things which won’t get outdated. For example, glasses frames don’t need upgrades often. Yet if you need new lenses, it is easy to interchange new lenses.

Why are you should probably never buy a digital Leica

Even with digital cameras, durability is overrated. Digital cameras are always getting outdated nearly every six months. Thus if you want to invest in a camera, the film Leica cameras are probably the only investments worth making. Same goes with the Leica lenses which won’t get outdated.

In praise of buying used or refurbished luxury goods

I think generally it is a good idea to buy used or refurbished high-end luxury goods. Why? Because you get the best bang for the buck. And most likely you get the most use out of it this way. It is probably the most efficient and effective way of buying goods. Also everyone always likes the notion of getting a good deal. For example, when I bought the iPhone 11 Pro refurbished from the Apple online store, I spent only $700 on it instead of the sticker price of $1000. Yeah ironically enough, the iPhone 12 mini is a far superior device. I think moving forward, I will never buy another iPhone pro, no matter how good. Rather it seems that the iPhone mini is the best iPhone.

Durability and reliability of cars.

Why do we really want from our cars? Truth be told, I don’t think anyone really wants a car for pure transportation. Everyone who said so it’s probably lying, or doesn’t care about art and aesthetics. Rather, we see our cars as an extension of our ego.

If you really wanted the worlds most reliable car, probably best to buy a Toyota Prius. If you want the newest and most interesting car, you buy a Tesla. if you want the most flashy car, you buy a Lamborghini with the scissor doors.

Yet I do not desire a world where everyone drives a Toyota Prius. This would be insanely boring. perhaps we should just be honest with ourselves, and know that our car purchasing behaviors are not based on durability and reliability. Rather, aesthetics in car design as insanely important to us.

Thus, when getting your next new car, ensure that the design and aesthetics is beautiful to you. and also realize that no matter how beautiful your car is, you will sooner or later bore of it. But at least with ugly cars, you will never get used to ugly design.

So if for any reason your car or thing seems ugly to you or doesn’t sit right with you, overtly reject it.

Durability in clothing?

When living in Vietnam I literally just had just 2x ex officio underwear‘s, and a single wool black shirt. When living uber minimalist, durability was actually really important. Why? Because when I was living in Vietnam, I didn’t have easy access to Amazon prime or any of the American retailers. Thus, I had to ensure that my goods were of the highest quality and the highest durability. So my second theory:

When you’re living somewhere in which it is hard to procure new goods, optimize for extreme durability and the highest quality.

Why am happier living a more minimalist life

I don’t think there’s anything inherently bad in consumerism. However, consumerism and desire for new random goods is a huge distraction. for example, I will always randomly check the Tesla, Apple, and Nike website for new things. I’m not quite sure why. Perhaps it is because I’m searching for a new new perfect thing, or I just like the product design. Regardless, it was much nicer when I lived in Vietnam and living in a tiny hotel room, where buying and procuring you things was a positively bad idea.

Is fast fashion a good idea?

Contrary to what others say, I think fast fashion is actually a good idea. For example, H&M has made so many interesting fashions much more affordable to the general public. Those if you are a high school or college kid trying to look cool, H&M is great.

One of the brands I’m huge fan of is Uniqlo. And also Zara for more formal clothes. Why? It is reasonably durable, and the fashion is good. The durability is good enough. And the price is good.

Don’t buy the iPhone pro

Thus one of my practical takeaways is to not buy the new iPhone Pro. Rather, just buy the newest iPhone mini.

Should I buy a Tesla?

I don’t think it’s a good idea to buy a brand new Tesla. If you really want a Tesla, probably best to buy a used Tesla model S instead.

Why? Because battery technology is evolving so quickly, buying a new Tesla is like buying a new iPhone Pro. It will probably get outdated very quickly. And you’ll lose a lot of money.

For example the new Tesla model S plaid is out. Everyone who bought the older Tesla model S P100 D is probably very upset.

What if I just wanna buy things to flex?

I think it’s OK if you just want to buy things to flex. If you want to flex the design, flex your style, or to attract attention. but perhaps if you’re going to do so, strive for the maximal flex, and just be very honest with yourself.

For example, if you want the coolest car, best to just buy a used Lamborghini. Because this way you can still tell others that you drive a Lamborghini, without paying the higher sticker price. And then this way I think it is wise to avoid buying any other luxury car brands like Lexus, Mercedes-Benz, or BMW. Because everyone has them. Maybe if you want to differentiate yourself, just buy a used Bentley or used Rolls-Royce.

How about cameras?

The Ricoh GR3 is the best camera, period. If you want the rangefinder experience, just buy used Leica M9. If you want the best image quality, buy a used Pentax 645Z. I don’t think any other cameras are worth it.

And certainly do not buy a brand new iPhone Pro for the camera. Because no matter how good the iPhone pro camera gets, it will still be only 10% as good as the brand newest digital Ricoh GR camera. Once again, if you want the best compact camera, RICOH GR III over any new iPhone Pro.

Thoughts on clothes

Best tshirt is outlier Black Marino wool T-shirt. Just buy one or two, and wear the shit out of it.

Shoes are not durable. Thus maybe it is best to just get the shoes for the fashion, rather than durability and practicality.

With watches, nobody needs a watch anymore. Just check your phone for the time. this is what Elon musk does. And don’t get an Apple Watch, because who wants to charge their watch every single night? And also the Apple Watch gets outdated too quickly.

In praise of IPad pro

Probably the best Apple product is the iPad Pro. I really do think that the designers at Apple put a lot of heart and soul into this product. Because it is so niche, and you could hold onto it and use it for a long time. I have never really loved any Apple products, only the iPad Pro. This is my head not Steve Jobs.

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