Extra Extra November December 2009
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The importance of good olive oil cannot be overstated, says Katherine Jubber, so when it comes to raising your living standards, splashing out on the little things can make a big difference.

My brother once told me the most important thing in his life is his razor. Every happiness revolved around it, he said. A good shave put him in a good mood, which meant a good day. A bad shave with a bad razor was like cold coffee - pointless, and a very bad start.

Shaving won't be an existential barometer for all of us but it makes the point that when it comes to home comforts, you can't skimp on certain things. Since we like lists so much, we made one of a few such things.

Olive Oil
Good for the heart and usable on everything. Yes, the best extra virgin olive oil can be expensive. So much so that, at the end of the month it can be a choice between the olive oil and petrol. Get the oil. Extra monthly cost: R100. Life changing potential: As high as its life prolonging capacity.

Coffee
If you drink coffee, drink good coffee. If you don't drink coffee, start drinking good coffee. That stuff from the tins tastes like dry soil, and some of it probably is. Espresso machines are not compulsory, but strongly advised for their extra life changing potential. Extra monthly cost: R150 (Espresso machines start at about R500) Life changing potential: Inestimable.

Pillows
Most people spend about half of their lives in bed. Writers and surfers even more than that. So pillows are just about as important as things get. The ideal pillow is like an adult teddy bear, and will give the owner just as much joy. Extra monthly cost: R500 (Once off) Life changing potential: 50% of your life 100% better.

Tea Set
You might think tea sets are for the aged and bored, but there is more to them than functionality. Not only will you use it seventeen times more often than you think, but the sight of it shining and complete on your shelf has sublime restorative power. Trust me. Extra monthly cost: R1000 (Once off) Life changing potential: Huge, and lasts until you are old.


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