The Eternal Battle of the Toaster

A strange reversal of roles

Anthony (Tony/Pcunix) Lawrence
5 min readMar 22, 2022


Photo by Seriously Low Carb on Unsplash

See that photo? That’s what bread becomes when I toast it. It looks the same on the other side, by the way. I mention that because it will become important later.

Making perfect toast is probably easy if you have something like this ridiculously expensive Japanese oven (not an affiliate link);

While it is true that I have bought foolishly expensive things now and then, I would not spend $300 on a toaster. I’m not sure how much I would spend, but you can safely assume that my bidding starts at $15.00 U.S. and that every dollar asked above that brings deeper frowns to my face. I mean, sheesh, it’s just electricity flowing through wires! It doesn’t need intelligence, gimmicks, or an LCD display. Hot wires and an adjustable rack or two is sufficient for my needs.

Not that making toast on such an admittedly crude device is easy. Our current toaster has a notoriously unreliable timer with a deceiving indicator that suggests, “Here is your path to perfect toast.” :

Definitely not perfect. Photo by autor.

It’s a lie. If you entrust your virgin bread to that setting, you’ll either burn it thoroughly or barely toast one side only. Which you might get depends upon the fickle mood of the machine, or perhaps it is something scientific like extra lumpy electricity at that particular time.

Neither my wife nor I trust that setting. However, I do begin the process there, which is a transgression that horrifies my wife and has been the cause of great excitement in the kitchen, with both of us yelling that the other will ruin the toast.

My wife, cautious cook that she is, sets the dial halfway between what I assume is supposed to indicate “light toast” and the darker icon.



Anthony (Tony/Pcunix) Lawrence

Retired Unix Consultant. I write tech and humor mostly but sometimes other things. see my Lists if your interests are specific.