42 things you once thought you'd be lost without but aren't.

It is often said that as much as things change, they stay the same. Clearly whoever said that hasn’t seen Mickey Rourke’s face.

But really, I think we can all agree there are many things in our lives that have been greatly improved as we ourselves, have gotten older. Sure, there are some things we mourn the loss of (the typewriter and the Atari being two of my personal choices) but all in all, our lives are (supposedly) more simplified and accessible today due to these advancements. The things we once we believed we couldn’t live without on a daily basis now don’t even exist.

Which makes me think: is this how it will be with my own iPhone and Netflix in 20 years time? Will they be just a laughable, distant memory? Well of course they will be, but as this list demonstrates, almost everything will, one day, sometimes sadly, become obsolete.


1. The Teledex

This is where we kept ALL of our contacts.

2. The waterbed

Try explaining to your teenage child that once upon a time there was a bed that was only one sharp object away from puncturing the mattress and flooding the whole house.

3. Double tape deck.

Clearly we don't need to hover over this beautiful piece of equipment anymore waiting for our favourite song to come on the radio.


4. The Vertical Grill

SO many chicken schnitzels were grilled over our lifetimes in these things. Why did they disappear?

5. Telephone books

Most of these are now used as door stops or turfed immediately but once upon a time, they were the ONLY way for us to find a plumber. Or stalk a *cough* friend.

6. Cigarette lighters in cars


Sure, "some" cars still come with these but they are used as charging points more than a way to light up a ciggie. Smoking is so passé..



7. Paper street maps

Melways, Gregory's or the UBD. Whatever you called it in your state, it was the ONLY map we once consulted. Now it's all GPS and phone maps.


8. The encyclopedia


My Mum took out a LOAN to secure these for the family.


9. Iron-on transfers

Don't see these around anymore...


10. Walkmans


Let's face it, these were the SHIT. But then they were superseded by Discmans and iPods and well, it was great while it lasted.

11. Phone booths


Sure, these are still around. Sporadically. But they aren't required to be accessible like they once were.

12. The fax machine

Who faxes anymore? NO ONE.

13. Terry towelling clothing


I think we call agree we are grateful these are but a distant memory.


14. Shorthand


You have to love that not so long ago, being skilled in shorthand was the ONLY way to get a job as a woman.


15. The CD tower

We agonised over the design of this. Crazy.


16. The camera

The camera still exists. But now it's digital. And fits in your back pocket.


17. The coins in your pocket to use at a phone booth in case of an emergency


Mine was tied in a hankie.


18. The electric frypan


Bring them back!!

19. The knitting machine


Meant to make life easier, I think these were phased out when people discovered Jenny Kee.

20. The birthday book

Okay, so once, this was the ONLY way to keep track of birthdays. Now we have Facebook to do it for us.


21. Radio alarm clock


Wake me up, before you go go.


22. A watch


I'm not saying these don't still exist but they certainly don't really need to anymore.

23. A landline

No longer necessary. Despite our own teen years being wrapped up in that cord trying to dodge our oldies.

23. A Rolodex


Sooo professional. Now, soooo unnecessary.

24. The floppy disk


The ironic thing being of course that our kids save all of their documents by clicking on a floppy disk icon and they don't even know what it means.

25. The tape


So many mixed tapes. So much angst. So much gloriousness.

26. The VHS tape


Never again will the white fuzz darken our doors.

27. Rabbit ears


Those ears caused MANY fights in our household.

28. 8 track tapes



29. Slides

Instead of subjecting your friends to a slide night, now you just bombard them with smug pictures on Facebook.


30. Hot rollers



31. The written letter


This makes me really sad but no one writes an actual letter anymore. No one waits by the letter box pining.



32. The video rental store

They are now 'DVD' stores but really, how sustainable a business is it when people stream or download all of their entertainment now?


33. The typewriter


They say the best way to write a novel is on one of these babies.


34. Notes in class



35. The Atari



37. Pencil sharpeners like this



38. The Speed Styler


39. Electric can openers


Because using muscle power was EXHAUSTING!

40. Macrame


Let's all just agree that this was a horrible period in our lives.

41. The record cabinet


Although, to be fair, this is making a massive comeback.


42. Sun lamps

Oh yeah, so safe. I'm sure nothing bad came of this.



So that is our list of objects and accessories that are now, in 2015, obsolete. Let us know if we've missed any.


Like this? You should try these:

80 things from the '80s that will make you smile

Things women only born in the '60s and '70s will understand

Helen Mirren: Why I can't look back at the '70s fondly