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Me and My Crap, God Bless Us

I get lots of compliments about my spacious loft in the 'hood and the veritable museum of crap that I keep inside of it, but my secret shame is that I usually hate being such a pack rat. There's no way that I could live in a smaller apartment even if I wanted to. I have already managed to discard truckloads of thrift-store clothes and furniture, old books, records, stacks of unused paper and art supplies, shoes that seemed cool for about a week, etc., but there always seems to be more lying around or more coming in. I get very sentimentally attached to a lot of my things, or I think that I ought to maintain my own reference library of books or source material for mix tapes or collages. I have lots of neat things, but it's a real pain in the ass.

A lot of the time, I just wish I could be one of those glamorous minimalists who can live in a modest apartment filled with nothing more than an elegant little futon, one or two achingly beautiful Eames chairs, and a thin, futuristic laptop (perched on a long, otherwise empty desk made from a slab of something interesting with spindly metal legs attached) for good measure. I want to own about 10 pieces of beautiful, versatile clothing, and 3 pair of shoes at the most. Maybe a few Polaroids of frolicsome moments pinned to the wall for decoration.

Even that laundry list seems like a lot when I look at it. The irony, though, is to have so few things would probably mean spending enough money on them that each wouldn't deteriorate immediately. I could probably sell my warehouse full of stuff here and invest in that new life. I probably wouldn't be able to afford the rent on a place nice enough that I wouldn't need to camouflage the structural defects with knick-knacks, though. The trouble is, if I got rid of everything, I would go crazy from the recurring instinct to wander over and look for the box of old photos or that old book with the crazy picture in it. Or I’d want to make someone a card with that old paper and some of the little plastic toys in that other box. Or I’d tell an anecdote that could only be illustrated by that one...Oh well, you get the idea. If I ever have the clearance sale, just promise you'll keep in touch in case I have a relapse and need access to all the toys.

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