Thursday, September 20, 2007

Do I Own My Stuff, or Does My Stuff Own Me?

I live in a cute little studio apartment. Mostly, my place is homey, welcoming, organized and adorable (I'm bragging, yes, but people really love my apartment).

However, I have this little region I call the Corner of Conundrum. This is a small glass table, filled up with stuff. There is also stuff below, in front of, and to the left of the table. The "conundrum" is this: I have no idea why I own any of it.

Here are the usual contents of the Corner of Conundrum:
  1. Two ancient computer monitors (I don't even own a computer).
  2. Computer games (I don't own a computer).
  3. TV/VCR combo I borrowed from friends ages ago and have unsuccessfully attempted to sell on Craigslist on their behalf.
  4. Timesheets from every temp job I have held, ever, except for the two weeks I have not actually been paid for yet.
  5. Various paperwork related to all of the people I need to send money to.
  6. South of the Border memorabilia. Up to and including fireworks.
  7. Just about every issue, ever, of all of the decorating magazines I subscribe to.

And it gets worse. Last week my ex kindly dropped off a box of stuff Mama State had sent to him by mistake. So I now have the following extra items:

  1. Big neon blue painting of a creepy blue Cherokee dude's head. (Since I know my dad reads this blog: Dad, I know the painting is a family heirloom and valuable. That doesn't mean I want some creepy blue guy staring at me while I sleep. If I did, I'd date a member of the Blue Man Group.)
  2. A downright amazing assortment of low-thread-count full size sheets. I still have a full size bed, yes, but I have lovely delicate skin that can no longer abide low thread counts. Plus, all of those sheets coordinate with my former bedspread, which was bright pink. Bright pink velour. So it's not like these are tasteful sheets.
  3. A CB radio, which was a gift from my uncle (who also reads this blog). I don't have a car, so I don't need a CB, but I kind of like the fact that I own one. In case any of you were wondering, my call sign is Vixen. Skye's is Princess.
  4. A humidifier. I don't even recall ever purchasing one.
  5. Loads of college paperwork. I graduated more than nine years ago.
  6. A small sign which says, "If You've Got It, It Got There By Truck."

I think I may have reached a point where my stuff owns me, rather than the reverse. If I could just clear out the Corner, I could potentially have one or more of the following:

  1. A home office
  2. A dining nook
  3. A minor shred of sanity

I do like my comforting cocoon of clutter. I'm a nester. I can't live out of a suitcase for longer than a week, because it makes me very depressed. I like stuff.

I use every inch of my closet space, including a section called "The Archives." The Archives include clothes I get sick of and put away, and pull out every couple of years. It also includes items I will never ever wear again, like my wedding gown (which I have also unsuccessfully tried to hock on Craigslist).

I think it's soothing to have stuff that reminds you of other stuff, or to know that my high school Doc Martens are still around. But I really, really want to reclaim the Corner of Conundrum. So, readers, how do I get rid of all that stuff? Is any of it worth any money? And, if it is, should I use the cash to have a dining nook or a home office?


Anonymous said...

The easiest way to get rid of that stuff is to use the Dumpster. Yes, I know it may be painful to throw it out, but if no one on Craigs wants it, it's time for it to become unenvironmentally friendly landfill.

Erin said...

Have you heard of Freecycle? I will send you info via email. Very good way to get rid of things that other people may find useful, but don't seem to want to pay for...

Shannon said...

Thanks, Erin. You wouldn't happen to want your TV/VCR back, would you?