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June 12, 2024

Facial transplants in the news

Closer to science fiction than scientific fact, several people have undergone facial transplants in the past two years. Relegated to only the most egregious incidents, like most medical miracles, the techniques were perfected. Once that happens, it is only a matter of time until the procedure becomes available as an elective surgery for those who are not satisfied with their current face, or who may just want a new look. After all, who wants to walk around their whole life with the same old face? Wouldn’t it be nice to re-encounter your 25th high school reunion? Then again at thirty?

Fortunately, great strides have also been made in face transplants for your (and other) kitchen cabinets. Thanks to the mastery of materials and techniques, your kitchen can now be renovated on an optional and economical basis and, when done correctly, is indistinguishable from a new kitchen, beautifying all those unsightly stains that have embarrassed you for years.

In the not too distant past, a few brave practitioners risked their reputations by using early crafting techniques. You can choose from a catalog of about three different renovation styles and colors, most of which were flimsy laminate doors with no detail. To make matters worse, the material was cemented to the face of the tanks using contact cement, which is a highly toxic and flammable adhesive with a life expectancy of 10 to 15 years. Not very tempting!

So scientists at Minnesota Mining & Manufacturing (3M) got down to business and created a new adhesive that is non-toxic, non-flammable, odorless, and only gets stronger with age! It doesn’t get any better! Then someone (I’m not sure exactly who) developed a material called Rigid-Thermofoil, also known as RTF. This fantastic new product is a vinyl-like material that is incorporated into a furniture grade composition board. Using computer-controlled heat and pressure to create the final product, it’s flexible and much more resilient than the old slats of yesteryear, and it can be molded into doors of various shapes enabling manufacturers to create hundreds of exciting patterns. But they didn’t stop there. New imaging techniques have been developed to replicate the beauty of real wood. This year, they even introduced an RTF product that looks just like stainless steel, creating a very modern and attractive look for your cabinets.

In 1951, famous industrial designer Raymond Lowe (and one of my personal heroes) wrote a book called Don’t leave enough alone. Apparently, manufacturers who make wood doors for refurbishment discovered this book recently because they decided to introduce alternative doors with new wood shapes and types. It’s no longer relegated to just oak, maple, and cherry. Now you can freshen it up with eco-friendly bamboo, walnut, mahogany, and sapele to name a few. Then the guys at 3M got together with the fabricators who made wood veneers and it was a marriage made in heaven.

So, if an unforeseen disaster has deteriorated all of your closet, now is the time to investigate a renovation. As the procedure has become more popular, the cost associated with the operation has dropped dramatically, just as people who return for treatment after it will also become more routine.

Modern science has taken giant steps forward in reforming people as well as kitchens. To quote the Wicked Witch of the West, her face plummeted, “What a world, what a world!” (Unfortunately, her face and the rest of her face had melted to the point where a transplant would not be recommended.) But she would have had a nice kitchen.

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