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This is a question Cheap Tat

OneEyedMonster remindes us about the crap you can buy in pound shops: "Batteries that lasted about an hour and then died. A screwdriver with a loose handle so I couldn't turn the damn screw, and a tape measure which wasn't at all accurate."

Similarly, my neighbour bought a lawnmower from Argos that was so cheap the wheels didn't go round, it sort of skidded over the grass whilst gently back-combing it.

What's the cheapest, most useless crap you've bought?

(, Fri 4 Jan 2008, 7:26)
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Homebase lawnmower
Years ago, our lawnmower packed up. So I bought one from Homebase for 19.99. When I unpacked it, I realised the cutting blades were 2 bits of plastic about an inch long. As soon as it started, they both snapped off. Took it back, apparently I was the seventh that week.
(, Mon 7 Jan 2008, 23:37, Reply)
Asda own brand Ginger Beer
I love ginger beer, me, but when I was broke, well, cutbacks must be made. Asda were knocking out four two litre bottles of my favourite fizz for 99p! WOO! Treat time!
So I got it home, cracked it open, poured a pint and eeeek that's acidic! It make my gums recede and bleed like bastards and I could feel the acid melt my teeth. Why I didn't bin the rest I don't know....some of my gums are still slightly receded, six years on. Stupid eejit. Should have used it to clean the concrete patio instead.
(, Mon 7 Jan 2008, 23:26, 3 replies)
A cheap coat
"It's not me it's you"'s post reminded me of a coat I had at school. It was about 1982, and I wanted a parka, the cool kind with the furry collar.

Well, I very nearly got one. Instead I got a coat which, while undoubtedly having a furry collar, seemed to be made of neoprene. Yes, the stuff you make wetsuits out of.

Now, I am not being ungrateful, because (a) the family were pretty skint at the time, (b) I don't think it was actually that cheap, and (c) this was in fact the most amazingly waterproof coat in the world and I never got wet or cold wearing it, no matter how hard the rain or how late the bus. Thanks, Dad!

But the reason it's in the "tat" QOTW was because of its amazing rubbery properties.

If you relaxed, the springiness of its rubberized fabric meant that your arms arose from your sides to about a 30 degree angle. You had to actually work to keep your arms by your sides. (Or put your hands in your pockets.)

The same property meant that it would stand up by itself. You could zip up the front, hold it by the hood, and place it gently on the floor, where it would stand, looking like an invisible Eskimo just after stepping in a seal hole.

When you're 12, this is endlessly amusing.
(, Mon 7 Jan 2008, 22:56, 4 replies)
cheap tat
im watching lenny henry.
(, Mon 7 Jan 2008, 22:48, 4 replies)
Cheap Holidays
My parents like anyone always have their eye out for a bargain. When I was in my teens and therefore sick of cheap camping type holidays, I wanted to go somewhere sophisticated, stylish, somewhere I could brag about to my friends.

So my mother saw a week long holiday to Mayrhofen, Austria during the ski season.

Sophisticated! Stylish!

And all for £45!!

Okay so none of us skied...

None of us had decent winter gear...

But it was £45 for a week in a posh(ish) hotel in Austria!

So after my parents had spent a few hundred pounds on ski jackets, hiking/snow boots, new woolly hats, gloves, and so on, we were finally ready to set off on our exciting Cheap winter holiday.

We'd never had a Winter holiday before.

We were flying to France and then a coach would take us on to Austria.

We were flying from Lydd airport. Yes, Lydd.


It's on the Romney Marsh and not that far from Camber Sands in East Sussex. It's flat, very flat around there and on the Marsh the folk have webbed feet.

Anyway, the flatness of the area means it's prone to fog.

Our flight was cancelled because Lydd was fog bound. But not to worry, a coach would be despatched and we would be taken to another international airport instead. Manston.

At the time we lived not far from Manston. Lydd is about 45 miles from Manston, we were going to be driving on a coach back home.

The coach arrived and it was held together by old bus tickets, camel dung and string.

All the luggage was loaded into the boot, we passengers were loaded into our seats and off we set down the potholed road out of Lydd.

We had gone about 100 yards when someone started to shout from the back...the door to the coach's boot had opened and all the luggage was strewn out on the road behind us.

Luggage collected, journey safely completed to Manston, we arrived at the airport.

And we sat outside in the coach. All of us. A plane load.


Because no one at Manston appeared to know we were coming. There was no plane ready.

Eventually after some strong words were exchanged we were allowed to get on board a flight. This was a chartered flight and not a scheduled one so things had been organised pretty swiftly, but it also meant that the speed of change over had removed the opportunity to restock the plane with drinks or any duty frees. Not a problem really, my parents had already spent the spending money on the ski wear (did I mention we don't ski?).

At long last the plane taxis down the runway (coincidentally Manston has one of the longest runways in the UK and was at one time on the list of emergency runways for the US Space Shuttle to land should it need to abort).
The plane goes faster and faster.
The plane begins to shake from the speed.
The nose of the plane begins to lift.
Slowly the plane tilts back as it hurtles along faster and faster.
The door to the cockpit flies open....the catch had given way and we are treated to the view of the pilot and co-pilot wrestling with the controls (I'm sure what they were doing was entirely normal, but to the untrained eye it appeared they were physically pulling us up into the air). As the plane continues to climb the door flaps open and shakes along with the passengers.

The remainder of the flight passed without a hitch...well, until we were circling over Calais airport.

Yes, for those of you familiar with the geography of the Nord Pas De Calais region (most of Kent comes into it according to Brussels)..Calais is approximately 35 miles from Manston (as the crow flies) or approximately 45 or so by road and ferry. Yes, it would have been simpler to have used the road and ferry, but this was all for £45!!

Calais was like Lydd - fog bound.

We had to fly onto Brussels. Where, like Manston, they didn't know we were arriving. We had to argue at the passport control that we were all entering the country.

Then we had to wait a few hours until our coach turned up.

Then at last we were on our way, overnight to Austria. On a coach.

We did no skiing.

I knew why we had never been on a winter holiday before - unless you are skiing snow is cold, wet and often quite miserable.

Everyone around us was having a fantastic time. Skiing.

But it all cost only £45.

My parents have never been on a winter holiday since.
(, Mon 7 Jan 2008, 22:41, 1 reply)
£150 -gone
I do a lot of sea fishing in my spare time and me and 2 mates decided to fish down West Wales.
Finding some cheap heavy duty line in the shed i put it on my reel.
When casting the line takes alot of strain and after an hour or 2 the line snapped and the rod broke in two after smacking it on the rocks.
Saving on line 50p..Breaking rod £150
Fucking heartbroken....
(, Mon 7 Jan 2008, 22:31, 1 reply)
Crappy Bingo Prizes
Mrs. Raystorm loves to go to bingo (it helps get her gran out of the house). One type of bingo is the one where you have a board of numbers and you cover them over with shutters, the sort that you tend to see at the seaside. Anyway, a week or so before Christmas, she won the most incredibly naff and cheap Christmas ornaments in one of these games. Both of them were 'musical box' style ornaments, i.e., you open the lid and it does something. One was wind up and showed a rotating Father Christmas whilst a very tinny rendition of a Christmas carol played. The other one was a fibre-optic scene of the Nativity, and needed batteries. The Father Christmas one worked well enough, as there isn't a lot that could go wrong with it. The Nativity one didn't do *anything*. Tried two sets of batteries, checked the switched, nowt. The build quality was incredibly cheap. I don't know who painted them, but diddy Raystormette could do better, and she's only 2! Figures out of all proportion, and the paint looked like it had been daubed on with a 5" paint brush! The Nativity one got binned with extreme prejudice, but we found that a friend of our's daughter really liked the Father Christmas one (screamed blue murder when we tried to take it off her), so we gave it to her.

Also, when it comes to cheap tools, I won't hear a word against Aldi, most of them are really good quality. I did think about buying a set of combination spanners from a Pound Shop though, but on closer inspection, the lumps of metal bared only the faintest resembleance to spanners, and looked as if they would snap if you looked at them too hard.
(, Mon 7 Jan 2008, 22:25, Reply)
Not the best Valentine's ever...
I'm not the world's greatest fan of cut flowers, fluffy toys or boxes of chocs, which makes me tricky to buy for at certain times of year. An ex of mine once had the bright idea of purchasing, as a lovely romantic Feb 14th treat, a lump of vivid blue rubbery plasticy stuff with wiring, metal bits, battery operated, designed to look like a huge tongue. Not wanting to disappoint him I switched it on - it made a racket like an electric razor at about 90 decibels. Wow, I was in the mood already and probably so were most of my neighbours (thin walls in my block of flats). Shame it didn't actually seem to be doing anything else.

Apparently it cost in the region of 15 quid, though this wasn't made clear to me until I'd got out my nail scissors to hack into the thing and retrieve the overnoised, underpowered vibrating bullet that 'powered' it. Even removed from its casing it was seriously underwhelming, which was a shame since my feat with the scissors got me dumped and I could have done with a little battery-powered friend at that point. The biggest consolation was the realisation that at least his 15 quid went on something that was to prove we couldn't be compatible - hence saving the big wedding, inevitable divorce and ensuing legal costs. So perhaps it wasn't such a waste after all.

Um. That wasn't quite how I was expecting this one to go... Oh well.
(, Mon 7 Jan 2008, 22:22, Reply)
"Happu Chrismas"...
...stated my 79pence milk chocolate Xmas calendar as I despondently opened the first few doors to only find a black & white image of the usual crimbo chuff.

Not only did I only get 5 chocolates in total over the countdown period, but the moulded sheet containing the little brown treats was inserted backwards: so upon opening the door the deformed chocolate robin mocked me from behind its pre-formed window.

After determined attacks using a handy scalpel I destoryed the calender but reached the chocolatey goodness.

God knows why I expected it to taste like anything other than utter shite.

Despite its incredibly disapointing length, it still made me gag.
(, Mon 7 Jan 2008, 22:17, 1 reply)
Should have known better
Bought a bike from a man in Brick Lane (market in East London)who, well, if I'm honest had teeth that would have put Shane McGowan's on the highest dental pedestal known to Colgate.
It cost £60, I rode it round the block, bought it.

The chain is knackered, the seat no longer stays still and the brakes rub agiant the wheel rim.

Although that be my fault for when I lost my rag with the likkle fucker and threw it against the wall as it had almost got me deaded.
(, Mon 7 Jan 2008, 22:16, 2 replies)
I did (sod it t'was Chrimbo), They were RUBBISH.

I'm not going to pretend to be middle class any longer.
(, Mon 7 Jan 2008, 22:09, 1 reply)
right now
my so-called friend, whom i have been good enough to give shelter, food and pink wine to for the night, is making me watch eastenders.

it gets no cheaper or tattier than this. the sets are crap. the acting is worse. the script should be illegal. why is this shit still on tv, please?

(, Mon 7 Jan 2008, 22:09, 15 replies)
Cheap boots (partial RP)
As a weedy sixth-former, working in a tile yard was probably a non-starter. Days 1 and 2 not too bad, but was told in no uncertain terms that the trainers I had on were inappropriate footwear. My Dad went and found the cheapest work boots he could find. They seemed to be made of the same textured, very slightly flexible plastic that car dashboards are made of.

Cue day 3, the hottest day of the year so far. Me and my mate from school had to load a whole roof's worth of slates onto the truck by hand. BTW, I now had my lovely new, cheap boots on.

At the end of the day, I went to bed and slept for 24 hours, then couldn't get my socks off because the blisters on my feet had burst, dried and glued them on. I had to soak them in the bath to get them off.
(, Mon 7 Jan 2008, 21:52, 2 replies)
I bought a Seat Leon - it was about £8k. Not my best purchase as the VW after it was far better.

Did it stop me buying another one? No - this one was £12k.....

My current VW is, by far and away, the better car.

I really, really have to stop buying cars on impulse....
(, Mon 7 Jan 2008, 21:51, 5 replies)
Apples, 25p each, Three for a £1

I fell for that. (I was only about 7)

I'm not sure if that fits into this weeks or last weeks QOTW best, or both.

Fekkin muppet I am sometimes.
(, Mon 7 Jan 2008, 21:30, Reply)
I bought something from a stall once, for a princely £1. A can of Coke FFS at an airshow back in about 1995. I would have refused but was about to faint from dehydration.

And it was warm.

I can laugh now.
(, Mon 7 Jan 2008, 21:18, Reply)
Just before Christmas we bought a CHF 20 (about £8.50) set of baubles from Ikea. Went in again today and they were CHF 1 (about 45 p).
So surely they were cheap tat in the first place and weren't worth the extra £8.05?
Swindling Swedish gits...
(, Mon 7 Jan 2008, 20:07, 2 replies)
just used this as a reply to a post further down but I think the sheer jollyness of the thing deserves a post of it's own in these depressing times...
I remember when I went to North Cheshire college my mate chipped in 50p towards a 5 piece child's music set from a pound shop. We had hours of fun playing on a 5 inch untunable guitar, a bass drum, a bizarre trumpet-cum-kazoo, a plastic cymbal and a pretend headset microphone. We actually sat outside in the rain for 2 hours 'busking'. We sang songs such as 'Janie don't you take your love to town' (Bon Jovi version) and an amazing 35 minute rendition of 'I can't get no satisfaction'. We made about £9 and went off and bought some chips.
(, Mon 7 Jan 2008, 20:02, Reply)
Mmm, you smell lovely
Huge Buzz - not a sex toy or a type of narcotic but in fact fake 'Hugo Boss' perfume my boyfriend bought from a £1 shop in Leeds.

It doesn't smell too bad though, surprisingly.
(, Mon 7 Jan 2008, 19:57, 1 reply)
My ear phones broke.
And i had £3, not enough to buy more.
so i went to the pound shop and bought a crappy radio with headphones, i then proceeded to throw the radio away and use the headphones.

I couldn't tell what i was listening to.
(, Mon 7 Jan 2008, 19:25, 1 reply)
My flatmate
came home today pissing himself with excitement, because he had bought tesco value razor blades. 10 for 27p. He has since discovered why.
He's 37.
(, Mon 7 Jan 2008, 19:20, Reply)
Whilst on holiday at the seaside I came across a delightful little shop called "Pound World" in said shop I discovered a BB gun, no joke a PROPER spring loaded BB gun for the sum of one English pound! I was thrilled until I broke the magazine for the little gun the very next day. Oh well the few hours of enjoyment I had messing around with it in the caravan was well worth the pound I spent on it. Shame the shop wasn't called "50p World" or i could have ran around going "50 p!" just like the annoying kid on that electronics shop advert.
(, Mon 7 Jan 2008, 19:17, 2 replies)
I bought a pop out tent
on the cheap, only to find that once it was opened, parts of the frame snapped, rendering it useless and unfoldable.
(, Mon 7 Jan 2008, 19:12, Reply)
Saw a few posts below about pound shops and how cheap the stuff is. I won't say as to where abouts I worked within the shit hole that nearly ate my soul (Tesco) all I can say is that I became mildly important to my 2 areas. 1 was wines and spirits, where 18 year olds would ask me to tell customers about wine because 'I knew about all that stuff'. I would point to something with a house on the front and say it was 'very earthy but a good all rounder'. I still laugh at all the poor fuckers who'd come in next week and treat me like a god claiming the wine I chose was beautiful (except one posh guy who pointed out that I was showing him a pudding wine). My 2nd department was the back door area - and here's the cheapo shit bit - we took out of date products (potatoes, mushrooms, anything that we could really) and changed the dates on them and stuck them back out. Reduction was a FINAL step in the Tesco way of life. I remember almost being sacked for not reducing 7 roll-cabs full of potatoes that were already a week out of date... when I said "imagine a poor old woman buying these and then finding out that they're moldy? How would you like it if your mum bought some?", my immediate boss replied "My mum's not thick enough to shop here so fuck all the old bastards" and when I refused twice he got a 16 year old from teh produce section to take care of the matter. I also remember a wagon turning up full of out of date things and shed loads of damaged goods. I had to clean rat shit and rotten 'stuff' (I never asked what it was) off random objects that were promptly knocked down by 15% and put on sale near the reductions section. I refused to clear one cage of food as it had maggots and dog shit all inside it so they waited until I went for a brew and made a mentally disabled blind man clean them up and told him the mess was 'just mud'.
Steaming bunch of turds.
Talking of which, never eat Muller yoghurts - I worked there also and the rat shit/yoghurt ratio is frankly alarming.
(, Mon 7 Jan 2008, 18:32, 3 replies)
cheap tat jacket
Imagine the scene, the year is 1971 I somehow had managed to survive the heady days of the sixties with my sanity and brain cells in reasonable shape, what happened next often leads me to wonder if I was not wholly responsible.
Saturday afternoon Wembley High Road walking along with then girlfriend yours truly spots the most amazing patchwork multicoloured suede bomber jacket (yes I was a fashion victim) and at a really amazing price (very cheap) I had to have it, purchase was made I looked super cool in my scarlet flares and blue cuban heel boots.
I decided to wear it there and then we then proceeded home via the pub where I could get lots of admiration and envy from my mates, we left after closing time and proceeded to walk home when we were caught in a sudden downpour and we both got completely soaked, I was young and very possibly impervious to the cold and the wet.
We were about 5 minutes walk from the house when the jacket started to get very tight around the chest plus it started to smell less of expensive leather and more like a dead goat, we arrived home and I started to unzip, the zip moved about half an inch and then stuck, the girlfriend who by this time was rolling about on the kitchen floor biting chunks out of the lino and literally wetting herself with laughter pulled herself together and managed to cut me out of the now rapidly shrinking jacket, then to add insult to injury the dye from the jacket had transferred itself to my bare arms result one red and one blue arm which took a week to wear off.
When it dried it would have fitted an 8 year old unfortunately it had acquired the consistency of a dog chew and was rock hard.
Did I learn my lesson no I went and bought another one the very next week and only wore it when the weather was nice, what a bollock brain.
(, Mon 7 Jan 2008, 18:20, 1 reply)
Sleep tight
I've been living in the same flat for two years now, with a great mate of mine. The landlord has a lot to answer for though. The bed I sleep in is quite possibly the worst piece of crap I have ever napped on. It's a double bed, which is good. When there's no-one sharing it with you, you get loads of room to sprawl.

But not this bed. This bed is an example of why you shouldn't buy the cheapest divan bed possible. It's basically two divan blocks on wheels that go together in the middle. Not attached together in any way, just pressed together, and they're the wrong size for the mattress on them.

Every single edge creaks. I don't just mean a little, I mean a lot. There is no way to get on or off the bed in any direction at any speed without a loud *GRRRRRREEEEEEERRRREAAAAKGRCREEAAK* or something like that. Every time you move around, the bed makes noise. Every time you shift position, the bed cries out in torment. And should you have a nice man in the bed, few things kill the mood more than the death cries of a bed that will not die.

It's not even the mattress springs - it's the wood in the cheap fecking bed.

Landlords - please get your tenants some decent furniture. It'll be cheaper in the long run! Get a nice solid metal frame with storage space underneath. Get a good basic wood frame. You don't need anything fancy. Just don't make your tenants suffer with the cheapest divan imaginable!
(, Mon 7 Jan 2008, 17:45, 6 replies)
cheap tat
It promised to be a star purchase but it wasnt-when in Woolworths i bought a musical toilet roll holder that played the Halleluyah chorus.

Made up as i was the thing kept going off in my pocket on the train ride home much to the amusement of my fellow travellers,that was annoying enough but when installed in my bathroom the bloody thing went all silent on me and ended up in the bin.

The cost ? - 50p !!!

I was robbed i tells yers !!!
(, Mon 7 Jan 2008, 17:45, Reply)
All in One Remote controls
I love the Pound Shops (and their evben more lowbrow competitor, the 99p Shop). I buy all mannmer of household items there, but there's one I am banned from ever purchasing again.

A few years back, when I first assembled my grgeous home entertainment centre, Mrs S was continually baffled byu having four or five remotes, and never knowing which one controlled which expensive black box (looking at the name eg SONY, TOSHIBA was obviously beyond her).

One day, in our local Poundland, she spots an all-in-one remote. Great, thinks I, Dixons want anything up to £60 for these, I'll have it.

Unfortunately, I could only get the thing to control my video recorder, and even then, only the rudimentary basics, and not the Menu/set up screens.

Next week, I spy another, different one. This one would only operate the TV.

Ands this went on until I amassed 5 different All-in-One remotes, each of which would only operate one item in my system, and consequently our coffee table broke under the weight of cheap plastic doofers clogging it up.*

(*may contaiun elemenets of lie)
(, Mon 7 Jan 2008, 17:40, 3 replies)
When I was in the scouts some 18 years ago, my mum bought me a pair of proper hiking boots just before we went a wondering for a long weekend. Not very cheap, but Millets own brand at about £30.

The sole fell of one of them in the middle of Exmoor.

Luckily, my mum assumed something stupid would happen to me so had the foresight to pack a pair of trainers in my rucksack.

When we got back, we went back to the shop to get a refund on the grounds that the sole fell off after 2 days, and the shop assistant complained that she hadn't cleaned the good one so they couldn't re-sell it.
(, Mon 7 Jan 2008, 17:36, Reply)

This question is now closed.

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