Understanding China, One Blog at a Time

An American in China

I Had a Broom and a Dream- Product Quality in China

Posted by w_thames_the_d on November 30, 2010


I had a dream that one day all brooms would be equal. That from the power and glory of He who guides us, we were all endowed with certain rights and abilities…but alas, I am wrong. 

Two days ago I brought a broom, but I live in china, and fear that their definition of a broom may differ greatly from my own. The ‘broom’ appeared to be your standard fare, it had a handle made of a combination of toxic metals and lead no doubt, and on the end it had these things that looked like bristles and when pulled across my linoleum floor, it did a wonderful job of sweeping away the fine Beijing silt- for a day.

What started out as a dream or a wonderful odyssey on the road to a clean home was dashed as yesterday that wonderful broom gave up the ghost, went kaput, it gave its life in cleaning my floor, but is now dead-it no longer works.

At first I was upset with the broom, I even went so far as to curse it and thrust it to the floor in disgust. But now, in calmer times, I see the error of my ways and have come to respect that little broom who gave its life to me and my humble abode.

I know what you’re thinking, ‘hey bill, the pos broom only lasted 26 hours, what a crock of crap!”

But I would say to you, bite thou heathen tongue! Think of the trauma that poor broom went through to be a part of my life and more importantly , think of all the road blocks set before it on its way to being a fully functional part of my daily cleansing chores.

Firstly, it was made in China, if this does not explain all, then let me elaborate. This poor thing had a handle made of metal stamped so thin, it was almost translucent, then, it had a little ‘plastic’ end upon which were mashed bristles. The ‘plastic’ was probably equal parts hope, formaldehyde, and cardboard, with a dash of epoxy, just to keep it together. the bristles were, heck who knows, but suffice it to say, i think it is not the material we get back in the old homestead.

So, now you can see how I commend that noble broom for withstanding the rigors of a few minutes of cleaning, what could i really expect? I now pity all brooms that I find in China and may start a collection thereof, just to relieve them of the ugly life before them.

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