Today and tomorrow I am going to attempt to make food for the whole week, to use up the food we still have left, and to avoid spending money on fast food. I could do this over the course of the week, except that all the kitchen stuff will be packed up after Tuesday. I plan to keep out one small pot for heating stuff up, but that isn't really enough to do actual cooking.
I'm currently making a bunch of pasta, and tomorrow (once the meat is thawed) I'll make the sauce. And a whole bunch of smoothies.
This is, of course, distracting from my main goal, which is semi-mercilously sorting through my stuff. I'm an awful packrat.
Some of it is sentimental. I have every single letter my family has sent me since I left for college. My grandmother writes to me once a week. I also have just about every notebook I used during high school. I didn't keep an actual journal during that time, but spent most of the day during class writing random stream of consciousness stuff. Some of it is potentially good source material. Some of it is downright psychotic, and I live with the constant fear in the back of my mind that someday I'll die, and someone will read these notebooks and have my dead body committed to the insane asylum.
Then there's my journal from when I was 7, in which I rave about how cute Wesley Crusher on Star Trek is. If I ever get a chance to meet Wil Wheaton, I'm going to ask him to sign it.
Anyways, none of this stuff takes up all that much room - two file boxes total for the notebooks and the letters. It's the principle of things. How much do I really need/want to keep?
And then there's all the stuff that I feel guilty about getting rid of, because it's perfectly useful, and I'll need it someday. Like partially used boxes of stationery that I bought in 6th grade. Or my sparring gear which, as it is made of foam, is probably nearing the end of it's lifespan.
The stationery is being tossed. I'm sick of carting it around. The sparring gear... Blanche, do you have any use for it? I don't know if any of it would fit. If not, I think it's either going to be thrown away or donated. If I get to the point where I'm taking classes again, and get far enough along that I need sparring gear, chances are that I'll be able to afford it one way or another.
We have a really large number of books. This is partially because we have vague plans to open an used bookstore one day, and partially because we're just packrats. All of them are being moved. I had three (out of god only knows how many) that I was going to take to Bogey's to sell back (they pay up to half price for recent science fiction and mysteries), but I don't suspect I'll manage to make it down there during book buying hours, so I'll just keep them.koyote
is a packrat, too. Mostly of books, computers, and calculators. He has authorized me to get rid of any non-book, computer, or calculator clutter, but I don't feel quite comfortable doing so, as you can never tell what random thing has immense personal value.
This really isn't the ideal move for mercilous de-packratting. It's corporate. It would be easier to just let the movers take care of it all and worry about de-packratting next time around. But next time around I'll have kid clutter to deal with, so I may as well get my personal clutter at least somewhat straightened out now.
I'm a little curious as to where the packrat disease from. Is it a survival trait gone awry? Or simply a symptom of our commercial society? Or a symptom of the mis-teaching about the inherent value of gifts?
I'm inclined to believe the one of the latter two when I find myself having a hard time getting rid of stuff that truly is junk. Like the orange hand. Two years or so ago, my co-worker gave it to me for Christmas or something. It's this frosted orange plastic hand-shaped coaster. Kinda neat looking, but there is no real reason for it to exist. I put it in my box of stuff to take home from work, which consists primarily of a bunch of other neat but not really deserving of existance items which decorated my desk.
My two main thought processes about it: "This is mine. I can't get rid of it." and "Someone gave this to me, and therefor it would be rude to get rid of it".
Looking at it that way, it's obvious the silly thing needs to go. So I'll stick it in the donation box.
But donating is really just another facet of this drive to hold on to things. Even if, like the orange hand, it is of no conceivable use to anyone, it makes me feel better to think that someone else has the option to claim it as a treasured possesion. It never did anything to deserve being sent to the dump, even if it doesn't deserve to exist in the first place.
But really, it's still assigning value to something that is basically valueless. Which is exactly the same thing that Target does (it looks like the type of room-decoration thing that comes from Target...I have a hard time imagining it came from anywhere else).
So I think I will have to a garbage-y grave, along with all the other junky clutter. I will stop worrying about who gave them to me, or their visual/audio/tactile coolness, and just toss them.
At least I can justify keeping my Beanie Baby collection from high school. I imagine they'll make good baby toys.