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Linda Alstead | all galleries >> Relight my Fire - 2013 > 13th January 2013 - an uneasy relationship
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13th January 2013 - an uneasy relationship
13-JAN-2013

13th January 2013 - an uneasy relationship

We had to have the roof replaced on our porch in the summer because the one that had been there since 1901 was leaking like a sieve! So a nice chap called Tim came along, stripped the whole lot back to sky and built a new roof, everything including the rafters got replaced. In the process he broke the light fitting which was no great loss a Focus DIY value lamp that cost about a fiver.

The trouble started then because DM and I both hate almost all modern light fittings. Somehow they all manage to be either pig-ugly or completely impractical and are often both. We mooched around in a couple of DIY places and couldnt find anything we positively liked, the best we could come up with was the one we least hated. So I decided to see if I could find a second-hand one on ebay.

It was before the news broke about their cheating ways and so I was blissfully ignorant of it at the time. I browsed and found this lovely thing. Its obviously hand-made, with hand-blown pink glass. It needed rewiring but I knew that would be OK because DM had just rewired another old lamp of mine. I paid the princely sum of 12 for it, far less money than we'd have paid for the one we least hated. It has sat around on our dining table for two or three months since I bought it waiting for DM to buy the kit to repair it, which finally happened yesterday. Its now got new antique style flex and an antique chain and looks so much nicer than anything we could have bought new. It's also got a 4 watt LED bulb in it so it's really economical on the leccy and given that our electricity bills are the size of the GDP of a small country, any savings are worthwhile.

Were both really thrilled with it its great value, beautiful and well-made BUT I look at it and am reminded that the place where I bought it is cheating us out of tax revenue by exploiting tax loopholes. Im not happy about that.

Its easy to boycott Starbucks because in almost every location there are coffee shops from other companies. Its a bit less easy to boycott Amazon but even that can be done with a little bit more effort. Ebay though? As far as I know, there is nothing else like it. So, do we go on supporting a company that behaves in this way because there is no alternative or do we cut off our noses to spite our faces? I dunno it depresses me to think about it.

Canon EOS 5D
1/100s f/4.5 at 105.0mm iso400 full exif

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Sheena Woodhead13-Jan-2013 21:12
Try not to worry about it Linda. Just accept that you have a beautiful light fitting which looks perfect where it is.
JW13-Jan-2013 18:47
The tax 'avoidance' is possibly too complicated for our media to interpret. If Starbucks stores are run by franchisees then they will almost certainly be paying UK tax. Ebay may (I don't know) be paying their tax elsewhere - just like British corporations such as BP pay British rather than US tax on US earnings. (I don't really know what I'm talking about ...)
David Mingay13-Jan-2013 16:51
The ceiling hook, chain and braided flex added another £25 for a grand total of just £37!