Chucking Stuff

I’ve been raised a bit of a pack rat. I hope my folks don’t get too offended for being sold out on the internet, but my mother has plastic boxes full of ten year old brochures. Heck, she has plastic boxes full of plastic boxes that she no longer uses. My Dad saves all the old screws and nails he pulls out, in addition to everyone’s favorite, the cutout underwear waistbands. I don’t think anyone knows what those are saved for (Dad, care to chime in and clarify?). Needless to say, I was destined to be a “saver”.

What I’ve never really understood is the whole psychology of it all. I’m always worried that something I throw away will be the exact thing I will need somewhere down the line. And therefore, I figure I can just file it away for when that time comes. It’s also the same reason I’ll buy something I don’t need when its a ridiculously good deal. I figure, it’ll be perfect someday, and then I’ll be so thankful I got it when I did. But most of the time, it never actually is useful. But I guess the rare occasions I do have exactly what I want reinforces the behavior enough.

So that’s why I think the most daunting part of this trip is probably what to do with all of the stuff we are leaving behind. In four years of living in this apartment, I’ve managed to accumulate a lot of things. A surprising amount. Especially for the small amount of closet space our apartment allows. Among all the things we are going to need to do this summer, packing up all of our things is going to be a big project.

I keep saying I because Theresa doesn’t have this issue that I do. I keep finding small bundles of clothes in the corner whose presence Theresa explains to me as “I don’t wear them anymore, so I’m gonna throw them out.” I’m pretty sure I have more clothes than Theresa, but I usually wear the same ten shirts, three jeans and four pairs of shorts.o fortunately, I have her to help me out with my “affliction.” She’s got a pretty good gauge of whats useful or not and she’s more than happy to share it with me. It doesn’t necessarily make throwing it away any easier though. Of course, I know to ignore her indignant stares about my video games and other electronics.

But needless to say, it’s the one thing about preparing for this trip that I’m dreading the most. Which I guess is good, because as far as issues go, its a pretty minor one. So are you a chucker or a saver? A Theresa or a Jeff? How are you able to fight your compulsions? I’d love some psychological help this summer.