Since my last attempt at a neologism didn’t exactly become a household word, here we go again, with an XTLA (Extended Three-Letter Acronym): “Technology Rejected At Goodwill.”

It begins with Harvey’s semi-innocent question: “Which of the following do you still own?”

  1. phonograph turntable (two)
  2. phonograph turntable capable of playing 78s (neither, alas, though I have been known to play things at the wrong speed and then digitally speed them up)
  3. 8 track player (no)
  4. cassette player (four, two component decks, one Walkman, one in the car)
  5. 5 1/4 floppy drive (in my backup machine)
  6. 3 1/2 floppy drive (in all three machines)
  7. a car with a carburetor (not since 1995)
  8. a non-cable-ready TV (two portables)
  9. a dial phone (yes)
  10. a corded phone (yes, same phone as #9)
  11. a winding wristwatch (yes, though it needs repair)
  12. a manual typewriter (not anymore)

Brian J. suggests a few additions. I have no ancient game consoles, but I do have three working VCRs, one of which is Beta format (and Beta Hi-Fi at that), and a LaserDisc player.

And come to think of it, I donated a non-cable-ready TV (19-inch Curtis Mathes, the most expensive television in America, and darn well worth it) to Goodwill circa 2001. Maybe this neologism needs a little fine tuning.


  1. Brian J. »

    27 July 2011 · 7:45 pm

    Another turn to the question is Do you own any media that can be played on or used with this item?

    I do for all that I listed, although I only acquired my first 8-tracks in the last couple of years.

  2. CGHill »

    27 July 2011 · 7:47 pm

    Where media are appropriate — wouldn’t need any for a wristwatch, for instance — it’s Yes all the way down.

  3. sya »

    27 July 2011 · 7:48 pm

    I only have #6 and #10. And I might get rid of #10 the next time I move.

  4. Andrea Harris »

    28 July 2011 · 12:06 am

    I’ve got two manual typewriters and a couple of my mother’s old winding wristwatches are somewhere still in my belongings.

  5. Tatyana »

    28 July 2011 · 6:14 am

    I have a feeling I know which of the “two guys” you are.
    The reason is probably seems obvious to oyu, but I’ll still ask. Why?

  6. McGehee »

    28 July 2011 · 7:00 am

    Three out of twelve for me, though one of the turntables was bought for the express purpose of digitizing LPs that I subsequently discovered I couldn’t find anywhere in the house, and the 3½” floppy disk drive is in a retired PC that could in theory be on its way out of the house today, once I’ve pulled the hard drive.

  7. McGehee »

    28 July 2011 · 7:01 am

    I don’t know why that entity didn’t turn into ½ as intended.

  8. CGHill »

    28 July 2011 · 7:10 am

    I will attempt to fix.

  9. CGHill »

    28 July 2011 · 7:14 am

    Didn’t like the one I tried either. I’m guessing that this is another weird manifestation of the fact that the original database here is not in UTF-8 and occasionally something feels compelled to remind it of that.

  10. McGehee »

    28 July 2011 · 8:50 am


  11. Blacque Jacques Shellacque »

    28 July 2011 · 1:43 pm

    Only have #10, in a box somewhere in storage (wouldn’t call it a “dial” phone because it has pushbuttons).

  12. Daily Pundit »

    28 July 2011 · 2:31 pm


    I’d call it Trash (for) Geezers (TRAG) myself, and I own a bunch of it…

  13. Tam »

    28 July 2011 · 4:41 pm

    It amazes me that there are people who don’t maintain a plug-in-the-wall landline phone with POTS.

    A good power outage could render your cordless phone useless and what’s the charge on your cellie right now?

  14. Old Grouch »

    28 July 2011 · 5:07 pm

    Ah, but does that turntable play 16″ transcription discs? And do you have any of those?

  15. CGHill »

    28 July 2011 · 5:13 pm

    Right now on the cell: three battery segments out of four. And a good power outage could render it useless as well, if it happened to take out the nearest cell tower, though most of them have some semblance of battery backup.

    I have no 16-inch discs. (My brother was the one who worked in radio, and by the time he got there, everything was on carts.)

  16. McGehee »

    30 July 2011 · 9:18 am

    It amazes me that there are people who don’t maintain a plug-in-the-wall landline phone with POTS.

    Something blew out the phone wiring in our house years ago and no one’s ever been able to find the fault so our “landline” is VoIP.

    I remember vividly the day the phone wiring failed. (1) Our then-wireless phone provider had been bought out by Cingular, which turned off the network that supported the phones we had, and Cingular was dragging its feet on letting us get new phones without a huge contract-termination penalty even though they effectively terminated the contract by shutting down the network; (2) our cable TV and internet went down; and (3) my truck wouldn’t start — leaving me forced to walk to a gas station from home to make a phone call.

    You’d think if the world were going to suddenly send me 150 years into the past it would have given me a horse to ride.

  17. Tatyana »

    30 July 2011 · 1:07 pm

    how deliciously funny (yes, Alanis: ironic, too) what I read this after today’s buddy-list @LJ.
    there is a LJ-community “my one day”, where members document their entire day with photographs (up to 100) and post them for others to see (and gossip).
    yesterday there was a post by a 35yo chemical scientist from UIC (university of Illinois in Chicago), married and a mother of 2 young boys . Some of the pictures showed her living room with an old TV and her sons watching Dora the Explorer. The majority of Russian (as in “living in Russia”) commenters were laughing at the woman for being so poor that she can’t afford the latest plasma set (as they do, presumably…)- not noticing the little box with 5TB memory, connected to the antique TV, or 2 new cars, or the realities of post-doc salaries and the cost of childcare…

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