This next unassuming object is a kaleidoscope. But this one’s nothing like the gaudy rainbow-coloured cardboard contraptions you last drooled over as a five-year old. This is a kaleidoscope for the serious, discerning adult. It’s a kaleidoscope with confidence – one that doesn’t need to constantly draw attention to itself or scream out “look at me” like some sideshow circus clown. This kaleidoscope is classy, and even a touch subdued, with its minimalist single-leaf design and oh-so-sophisticated brass viewfinder.
That is, until you look into it, and the deception is revealed. No matter how it tries to disguise itself, it’s still just a toy at heart. It has no other practical purpose than to add a little bit of fun to your day and help you see the world a little bit differently. Although these days I barely pick it up more than a few times a year, I’m still glad I own something with such a singular, lighthearted purpose. And it looks good on a coffee table too.