Have you ever had one of those days where you spent the entire day cleaning, then came to the end of the day and looked over a house that looks like it hasn’t seen the business end of a sponge or broom in something like three decades?
A house which, in fact, has distinct overtones of crazy hoarding cat lady and you really are living in the Fly Lady definition of CHAOS: Can’t Have Anybody Over Syndrome?
Have you ever then found yourself muttering dire things under your breath?
Like, that for two cents, you’d haul every last thing you own, even the things you actively use every single day of your life, out to the driveway and try your damnedest to sell it? Garage Sale of the Gods, One Day Only?
And that you wouldn’t give anybody else in the family a vote first? Including yourself? Just…put price tags on everything as if it didn’t belong to you and you didn’t care LA LA LA, and try to sell it.
Whatever didn’t sell, you got to keep. Whatever did, well, you’d simply do without for a while and see how you did. If you found your life was an unending misery without it, you’d consider the possibility of maybe replacing it.
Except that damn, the idea of having an emptier house surely does appeal right about now.
I have to admit, a lot of this problem stems from my pack-rat tendencies, which in turn stem from my tightwad habits. I’m one of those people who will hold onto bizarre things – rubber bands, frozen orange juice lids, every scrap of paper that ever comes into my possession – on the theory that I might have a Perfect Use™ for it, someday.
And won’t I just feel the perfect fool if I have to go spend good money on something I threw away six years ago?!
Oh, if only I hadn’t gotten rid of all those rubber bands, I might have been able to fix this broken carburetor for free, instead of having to spend $400 at the shop for a new one!
But let’s face it, there is only so much room for Stuff, and furthermore only so much room in my brain for remembering where Stuff is. Why do I have so much trouble finding things? Because! I can’t remember where they belong! Which means that I reinvent “where they belong” each time something wanders into my clutches. Rubber bands? Hmm…can’t remember, I think it was a drawer, right? I’ll just go ahead and put them in this drawer for now…
Fifteen drawers stuffed with rubber bands later, I have no room for paper or pencils or anything else.
And of course, trying to undo this wretched situation leads to another one, which is that everything you own is out on the floor while you try to sort through it. Which is overwhelming, so you give up and kick it under the bed or something for a while, just a little while, you understand, because gee whiz, don’t you deserve a little down time once in a damned while?!
Yeah. A random, no-questions-asked, no-holds-barred, no-sacred-cows garage sale starts to sound…kind of good. A clean break, a new start, a chance to just hit the Reset button on the whole mess.
Fortunately for the Denizens, I loathe garage sales. Our stuff is (probably) very safe indeed, because I simply won’t be able to make myself brave the garage sale crazy ever again.
Any more than I can make myself deal with the pile of homeless crap camped out on the other side of my bedroom door. It’s been mocking me for, what, four days now? But I have nowhere to PUT it!
So…there it sits. In the middle of my hallway. Laughing at me. We are nothing but useless crap, Tama! it snickers. And you are our slaaaaaaave, because you can’t bear to throw us oooooooout, even though we deserve nothing moooooooore…
Yeah. I know I won’t actually do it. But at this very moment, I have to admit the idea makes for a rather nice fantasy…
Sell everything, right down to the furniture.
The bolt the door, put bars over the windows, and never ever allow another item to enter the Den.
Just imagine…being able to walk…through the house…in a straight line…without stumbling or tripping, without hearing unexpected CRACK! noises under your feet, without finding yourself herding the strays into piles that then mock you because there’s nothing you can really do about them because the drawers are all stuffed to straining as it is…
What a grand and glorious thing that would be, huh? Grand…and glorious…indeed…
E. B. White
1 day ago