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Farewell to the Swanktuary

The biggest change in my life right now is my imminent departure from the Swanktuary (formerly known as the Rumpus Room). Ah, my dear home: the only place I ever lived in longer was the house in Staten Island where I was raised. You can see here how much care went into setting it up just right:

Panoramic view of the Swanktuary

There have been a few major phases of my time here: my Wallpaper*-esque bachelorhood (as somewhat inaccurately chronicled in a New York Times online feature a while back), my first disastrous attempt to share the space, and then the final transformation of the last year of happy homesteading.

One of the things that I loved most about the space and the greatest danger of it has been the sheer the amount of...well...space. I’ve always been a bit of a pack rat, and having so much area to work with certainly encouraged me to keep everything that crossed my path during the last three-and-a-half years. I’ve been able to avoid ever making any hard decisions about how much I really needed to hang on to any of the things in my possession. Now, however, as I prepare to vacate my little warehouse and disperse my treasures to other deserving individuals, I’m finding that trimming down the excess isn't as hard as I thought it would be.

I’m getting used to the idea that it's time to assess what's important and what's not. I don't really need kitchy artifacts or old toys that I have just because they're fun to show off now and then. I don't need a jacket to suit my every outerwear whimsy. I don't need that lava lamp or the bicycle-seat stool no one uses. I can pare down to some old furniture with sentimental value, my computer stuff, some particularly useful art supplies, and an assortment of favorite books and CDs. It's very liberating, in many ways, to shake of the burden of ownership of all that stuff. I'll get more, surely, but hopefully this will be the lesson in simplicity I’ve been trying to learn for so long.

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