Joe College flew the nest for academia last week. In the process closets were raided, cupboards ransacked and drawers were rooted through in order to collect all his stuff and any little useful items we could spare to make his room at college more habitable. This in addition to the obligatory Ikea run and electronics store safari for a mini-fridge. Looking at the mess our Joe left in his wake, Vince and I concluded that we have a lot of stuff. Mostly it is stuff that we don’t look at, use or want to have.
My husband of almost 25 years looked at me with that special, irresistable twinkle in his eye that to this day makes me swoon and said, “I think it might be time to downsize the household inventory.” Who am I kidding? Nobody will believe that. No. What he really said was, “We have got to get rid of this junk!”, but it had the same effect on me.
In every marriage there is a “keeper” and a “tosser”. In this context I’ll freely admit to being a “tosser”. According to Vince, I mostly toss his stuff but I ask you, dear readers, is there any logical reason to have 3 pair of clapped out, paint-spattered topsiders, size 11 ½ EEE in a single household? Vince thinks there is. The man is obsessed, obviously.
Now with Vince’s full co-operation I can get rid of all the extraneous household inventory: not only 2 pair of clapped out topsiders but also the chest of 10 year old Donald Duck comic books (and all the years following up to present), 3 sacks of clothing too small for Imp 2, books I’ve acquired somehow but have no desire to read, ruined CDs that seemed a shame to throw away, old cans of paint (from 2 moves ago) kept “just in case”, the microwave that doesn’t work well except to make popcorn… I could go on for days, but you get the picture. If we lived in a smaller house, I’m sure we’d make the cut for “Hoarders”.
Last June, while lunching with a friend, she mentioned feeling burdened by all her possessions. I understood the sentiment although I didn’t share it at the time. August finds me longing for a clear path from the garage door to my gardening tools, aching for a guestroom fit for guests instead of a guestroom/junk collecting facility, desirous of a closet where I can find the turquoise tunic dress in under 35 minutes. When the mountains of things have been removed to the dump, the recycling center and various charities (Wednesday is the day, Vince promised) it will feel as though an albatross has been cut loose from my neck. O’ the freedom to move unhindered through the rooms of your own house!