Greatest Hits of '07: What's the Oldest Thing You Own?

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As we enter the new year, I'm re-posting one more favorite post from 2007. Here's a fun one from August.

My friend Lyza recently posed a great question which I'm now stealing: what's the oldest thing you own?

Looking around my apartment, it's hard to find anything older than the 90's -- and most of the objects I use every day were made in the last few years. I have a chair and a "chairside stereo" from the 60's that I use as an end table. I have some art prints that may date from before 1950, but it's a little hard to tell. Quite likely, the oldest thing in my apartment is the apartment itself -- it was built in 1917. I honestly can't find an object in here that's older.

I think this is an interesting question, because it makes me wonder about my surroundings. Am I living in an unusually modern space, or does everybody pretty much live around new stuff? Have people always had all-new stuff, or is this a recent development? What does it say about my job that all the tools I use for work (computers and such) are all, at most, about three years old?

So here's the question: what's the oldest thing you own? And a related question: what's the oldest thing you actually still use regularly? (The latter answer for me is my father's 1967 Seiko Sportsmatic kinetic watch, which he bought in Vietnam.)

Note: check out the original post for 92 reader comments.

January 1, 2008 - 4:49am
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