The convenience of delivery—whether it's ordering Thai food on Seamless or buying a book from Amazon (although, don't do that, what's wrong with you? shop locally)—seems like one of the advantages of modern times. Ahhh..modernity. Isn't it just so great? Isn't it just the best? Sure it is! Except that, when I think about it, even before the advent of the internet and online shopping, there was still a baseline expectation of convenience and service that we maybe don't even have anymore. Just because we get books and drunken noodles delivered to our doorstep, it doesn't mean modern times are that much better. After all, doctors don't make house calls any more, do they? It would be so great if they did. But they don't. However, there are some throwback services that you can take advantage of, that will make your life easier and hearken back to a simpler time of simpler pleasures, when no one had a SodaStream, but people still found a way to keep on living.
The New York Times published a wonderful profile of Eli Miller, the "seltzer man," this weekend, which shed light on one of those unusual professions that you forget even exist anymore. In the age of the SodaStream and, you know, fully stocked delis on every corner, it might seem a little archaic to have someone deliver seltzer to your home. But, so what? The product is excellent and wouldn't it be nice to know that you're helping to perpetuate a business that is odd and unusual and unique, at this point, to Brooklyn? Yes! It would be nice. Plus, you don't really want store bought seltzer do you? According to Miller, no one should "have to drink that dreck you buy in the supermarket." Dreck! Don't drink dreck, you guys. Don't do it.
Knife Sharpener, Mobile or Otherwise
Nothing is worse than a dull knife. Ok. Some things are worse than a dull knife, but a dull knife is pretty bad. But what should you do with your dull knives? Throw them out? No! Don't be a wasteful consumer. Get your knife sharpened by the highly mobile Bob's Grinding Service, whose green truck I've seen on the streets of Park Slope, Carroll Gardens, and Windsor Terrace. Or, alternately, take advantage of the knife sharpening skills of the good people behind A Cook's Companion, who will restore your knife's edge to a sharpness unseen since that awesome part of The Bodyguard where Whitney Houston plays with one of Kevin Costner's swords and then he cuts her scarf in half. Or something like that.
So, lice. Nobody wants to have lice, and probably you can avoid ever getting them if you never have any grubby little children around you. But, here's the thing. As terrible as it must be to have lice (luckily I've been spared this affliction up to this point) there is one upside! And that is that you can actually hire someone to come to your house and spend hours combing through your hair and picking out the lice and nits, which are the lice eggs, which, gross! But anyway, imagine if you had lice, or bedbugs, or something equally as horrifying. We're too old to get our parents to help us out with this kind of problem, but we still want someone else to take care of it for us, don't we? Enter the Lice Lady, otherwise known as Dalya Harel. Harel will come to your house and spend hours picking over your scalp, leaving you clean and bug-free and even though the service costs hundreds of dollars, isn't it nice to think of someone, anyone, paying that much attention to you? I think I just accidentally understood the appeal of prostitution. Whoa.
Ok, so there are plenty of ways to get food delivered to your home. This isn't something exclusive to a service like Sweet Deliverance, but this Brooklyn-based business takes food delivery to a whole new level. Ordering from Sweet Deliverance means you're guaranteed the best of the best—food comes from beloved local places like Paisley Farms and Saxelby Cheesemongers, to name a couple. And because so much of it is locally produced, it doesn't make you feel as bad as if you were ordering meals or ingredients from a company that shall remain nameless, whose trucks idle for hours all over the city, polluting the air as they make their rounds. It might be a luxury, and one that people didn't have a couple of generations ago, but Sweet Deliverance uses the best ingredients to deliver prepared meals to your door that would rival anything that your grandmother came up with in the kitchen. That can't be a bad thing.
Sweet Deliverance; sweetdeliverancenyc.com
I feel like the importance of having a good tailor is something that prior generations knew all about. For our generation—used to disposable clothes from Forever 21 and H&M—the value of tailoring is not as widely appreciated. However, maybe people would actually take the time to make sure their clothes were high quality if they actually fit well. But going to a tailor seems so onerous, doesn't it? That's why it's awesome that you can get a tailor to come to you! Doesn't that seem like something your grandfather had done? I don't know. Either way, you can utilize the very talented Nayantara, also known as the Williamsburg Seamster, who will come to your place and make you look your best.
The Williamsburg Seamster; williamsburgseamster.com
Also, here's David Bowie singing "Modern Love". Just because. It's Tuesday. Don't we all need a little Bowie on a Tuesday? He's timeless too.
Follow Kristin Iversen on twitter @kmiversen