May 26, 2003


Yesterday and today I have been ravaging through cubbyholes, file cabinets, and under-the-bed boxes stuffed with paper and other mementos trying to determine the difference between detritis and keepsake. It's been a good time and a half attempt at spring cleaning, and I'm still nowhere near done, but here's the gist of it all.

An online friend recently informed me he was throwing away his life. On the surface, this is a pretty strange comment, but he meant it quite literally - throwing out/ridding himself of everything that doesn't fit in a midsize car in preparation for a long move by said car.

Immediately this set me to thinking. First, I'm established in a house - been here over three years, as a matter of fact. I sit writing in my office, and I'm fairly certain I could not fit this room's contents into my automobile. Still, I tossed the thought through my head and brought it forward as a dinner topic last evening and then set about trying to mentally stratify the things that're important to me - the female Noggle hierarchy of needs, if you will.

So here they are.

1) Brian. Obviously, I'd go nowhere without him, though this would make the task a slightly cheating one - Brian has a truck, so we'd have two automobiles to fill. But, if I could only fulfill one "need," it'd be him.

2) The cats. Plural. All of 'em. They're a collective entity because I cannot further classify the cats into taking this one and leaving that. So, all five cats and Brian in one automobile - that'd be about all she wrote. I cannot fathom a long trip with 5 cats, though. Some of us would not survive, I'm sure.

3) All of the small things that I consider sentimental. Most of these things fit in two save-it boxes (my mother's terminology) that fit under the bed. I could probably compress the really, really important things into one box. I'll talk a little about these things.
  • We have a 23 year-old book mark award that says "you've read 25 books." The grape scratch and sniff component of the bookmark still works.
  • A crayon-colored and torn piece of notebook paper that says "Notice! If you want to be a cat club member, call Heather Igert at 648-4894."
  • Report cards from junior high, high school, and college.
  • My father's, grandfather's, and grandmother's obituaries.
  • A copy of my wedding invitation.
  • A card from my parents, in my father's handwriting (this is rare) indicating pride and a $50 reward for all As.
  • The rules of dancing, as I so aptly illustrated on a napkin to Brian when we were first dating. They include such gems as "No clapping, no snapping fingers, and no one-finger thing."
  • My A+++ on "Which Did More to Shape The Development of Democracy, the American War for Independence, or the English Revolutions of the 17th Century?" Incidentally, I gave credit to the British. The whole chicken and egg thing. What else is a 15 year-old to do on this subject?
  • My 9th grade spelling bee word list, containing such beauties as bilboquet, brachygraphy, casuistry, catastasis, dehiscence, fricassee, glogg, insouciance, potpourri, schipperke, tagraggery, and zaibatsu.

4) The computer. Sigh, sad, eh? The computer means I'd have the capacity to work and to communicate, though, so it is a simple choice.

5) All - the vast and volumonous quantity - of our books. It'd break down here. There's no way all of our books would fit in a vehicle, even if it were devoid of humans and felines. But books are to be kept, and, in our definition, that often means on bookcases stuffed two books deep.

6) Clothing - yeah, this doesn't seem to practical, but clothes can be replaced, or, actually, I'd probably cheat and ship them because it's cheaper than shipping books.

7) Anything else - CDs, DVDs, the various material things that are nice but not necessary.

So, there's my thought for the day and a large chunk of my weekend's activity; my recycle bin out back is a very full and bustling place.


Posted by hln at May 26, 2003 05:40 PM | Blogspot Blog