Friday, April 18, 2008

I'm just sitting on the shelf

Having only 2 weeks of school left (!!), I somehow ended up this week, post-Wednesday, with nary a shred of homework. Nada. Nothing. I turned in the last draft of my thesis this week (well, techincally I have one draft left, but it's done; the last draft is simply a "cleaning up"), turned in some final papers this week, and had homework due on Wednesday.

So I've found myself with some spare time for the first time in 3 months. The first thing that went out the window this semester was my typically impeccable level of tidiness in my bedroom. My bedroom has been a wreck! So I decided this morning to clean it up. Including cleaning out my file drawers full of crap that I've barely looked at in years.

I am not a pack rat. I hate having stuff. Until I'd moved enough times that there was very little left, evey time I moved I'd throw away multiple trash bags full of stuff. Just crap that I'd collected. Some useful, some not. Some sentimental, mostly not. It's weird when I get into these moods to purge: I always fancy myself overly sentimental, but when it comes down to stuff, I'm about as unsentimental as it gets. I can throw almost anything away. Except gifts that were given to me. I can't get rid of those. I actually have a box full of gifts from ex-boyfriends that I either don't care to use (clothing and such), or just don't want sitting around. But I also can't bring myself to just toss, either.

Although sometimes I just want to set fire to the damn thing and be done with it.

But I digress. I like my collections: books, music, films. Although I don't buy films anymore, and rarely buy music anymore, I still buy books. That's pretty much the one thing I have no guilt accumulating. In fact, one day I hope to have a whole house full of books. But as it goes, aside from my couch, everything I own can fit fairly neatly into my little bedroom. (I actually did a big book purge about 4 moves ago, selling a couple of boxes full to Half-Price Books, and I've regretted it ever since.)

I like things that way. When I have too much stuff I feel consumed by it. I feel responsible for it. I get nervous when I go into people's homes who just have stuff everywhere, like a goddamn museum. I guess for some people that's a sign of a full life lived, but I hate it. I have a couple of momentos from foreign countries, but mostly I prefer my memories in words and a few photographs.

There's something I find very romantic about occupying a very small space and utilizing it as efficiently as possible. I love cute little small houses and small apartments (as long as they have natural light, and preferably a little balcony). I guess I've just never understood why so many people wanted to live in the suburbs in big houses, with big rooms, and huge yards, only to then have to fill them up with stuff.

Small spaces make me feel safer, more protected, less separated from the world around me. It's cozy. To me.

Now I must get back to cleaning out my file cabinets. Purging is such a great feeling. I love it.

1 comment:

Tom Drew said...

If you regret getting rid of a couple boxes of books, you would've probably strangled me for getting rid of, like, ten boxes right before I started grad school. I kind of regret that, now that I'm over my little "I don't want to be one of those people who reads the classics" phase.

Nice She & Him reference, too.