Like a Pavlovian dinner bell, the sound that signaled dinner preparation was underway was loud enough to draw our kids away from their desks and into the kitchen to see what mom and dad were up to — a kind of bass thump and tinny clang. The sound that the lid of our old step-can made banging against the wall.
It’s funny what you can get accustomed to. I think I just assumed that the noise was something inevitable, the floppy plastic lid flying back to smack the wall. When the sound became too loud, I’d scoot the can a bit more away from the wall, but it would just slide back into noisy proximity over time. “That’s just what they do,” I told myself.
All five of us eat together at home most nights, so by my rough calculations we heard that jarring “whang!” just under five kajillion times.
The sound is gone, now (though the scars on the wall remain: see photo). Do we miss it? Not one bit.
What happened? A simplehuman 45 liter butterfly step can. The cacophony that once accompanied garbage disposal now replaced with the nearly silent whisper of efficient internal hinges lowered on lid shox.
We’ve lived with our upgraded trash can for a few weeks, now. Every time I change the bag, every time I watch the double doors gracefully part or fold closed, every time I enjoy the silence of the whole operation, I reflect back on what I learned at Camp Simple, the event simplehuman hosted for a group of bloggers in LA back in November.
I can see that somebody cared about the manufacture of this garbage can. To be more specific, simplehuman CEO Frank Yang and his team really, really cared about the manufacture of this garbage can.
It’s the operation of the butterfly doors that first attracted the attention of my kids, but as the garbage man in my house, what has made my living more efficient is the ease with which the liner comes out of the can, and the ease the bags come out of the liner. And the bags! The simplehuman garbage bags!
How could someone, even a brand ambassador, care enough about garbage bags to use exclamation marks? We all know — take out the garbage every other day for a decade and you care enough to use every kind of punctuation on the keyboard. These bags fit the can perfectly, resist cuts, feature handles strong enough to extract the bags even when they are tightly packed and even contain a wine bottle or two.
The whole key is this — I expend 50% less effort extracting the bags than I did with our old can. There not a whole lot of fuss involved. The design is simple and efficient and just works. Yang said that for him, the standard was that he wanted to make products that he would be proud to give to his friends as a gift.
If I give you a trash can for Christmas next year, don’t be surprised.
And the kids still manage to gather enough clues that dinner prep is underway. They wander in to pick at the cut fruit and steal a leaf or two from the salad bowl. But when I step on the pedal to dispose of the rinds and cores, the silence is golden.
Disclaimer: As I mentioned in the post, I’m a proud brand ambassador for simplehuman and will be creating a series of posts over the next year that relate to that outstanding brand. Because you know simplehuman makes much more than trash cans. But more on that later. The can I tested was provided free of charge, and I am compensated for my work as brand ambassador, including the writing of this post.