A few things that I want to always have at my fingertips:

1. Starbuck’s Mocha Frappuccino Ice Cream–Top of the list spot of course goes to one of the best ice cream flavors I’ve ever had. An ongoing cause of those embarrassing episodes of talking to myself in a public place, trying to convince the other me reflected in a frozen foods department glass door that I don’t have to get a pint every time I set foot in a store that sells it. Creamy chocolate swirled with dreamy mocha…a match made in ice cream heaven.

2. Lays Garden Tomato and Basil Potato Chips–Taste like barbeque, but with a list of ingredients that are not only all pronounceable, but also entirely recognizable. I could eat them all day, if not for my sometimes will of iron.

3. Christophe Beverly Hills Purely Natural Shampoo and Conditioner–Purely wonderful for people wanting as few chemicals in their products as possible, when possible. No sulfates, parabens, dyes, or fragrances. It uses natural citrus, smells heavenly, and leaves my hair feeling like silk.

4. Olay Active Hydrating Moisture For Sensitive Skin–No dyes, fragrance, or sunscreen to worry about irritating my super sensitive skin. Leaves my face velvety smooth, which goes well with the silky hair from #3.

5. Sony In-ear Headband Headphones–A skinny, adjustable headphone part, with comfortably curved earpieces that stay snugly inside my small ears. They seat really well, so that I can listen to music for as long as I want, without having to constantly fiddle with them. Ear buds either fall out or won’t go deep enough into my ear for full, rich sound. These lightweight headphones solve both problems.

And now for the sad, frustrating truth. Everything I’ve listed above are some of the best foods and products I’ve ever had in my life, and I would buy them for the rest of my life…if only I could. Every single thing is no longer available. Certainly not in any store I ever go to. There may still be a few avenues of possibility online, but the prospects don’t look promising.

Best I can tell the face and hair products have been discontinued altogether. The chips may have been a temporary promotion and the ice cream seems to have fallen off the face of the earth. The headphones slowly disappeared over time. I know this because I listen to a lot of music and I’m rough on headphones. I’m on about my fifth pair of these perfect ones, and am now using the last one of several I got at Big Lots in a clearance. You know a product is about to become unattainable when it shows up in a Big Lots clearance sale.

These are really only a few of the many things I’m thrilled to find, use long enough to become attached, and then lose to the ever changing commercial quest for the next best thing. Product tinkering for minute improvements that replace customer favorites is a real source of frustration for consumers like me. As much as I love technology and all the great things we have at our fingertips in a constant parade of new and now, when I find something I really love I would surely like to know I can still have it the next time I go looking for it.

I almost want to think that as 3D printers become more accessible and affordable to the public, the problem will be solved. I’m afraid it won’t be that simple, though. I’m pretty sure that what will happen is that the 3D printer gurus will keep upward tinkering every model, so it will become obsolete practically before we learn how to use it. Even if by some miracle that doesn’t happen, they’ll probably discontinue templates. Hopefully those all important design guides will live on in archived databases the tech savvy can still access. If not, at least we’re already accustomed to searching for the next best thing, when all we really want is the best thing we used the last of last week.

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