Do you have a lot of stuff? When you get new stuff, do you add it to the same stuff you already had or do you get rid of some of the old stuff?
I’m looking at my stuff right now, making plans to eliminate the excess that is hiding in my attic and basement and in the nether reaches of closets. I have bigger goals to downsize high visibility stuff that nags at my personal brand: my husband’s old player piano (and 80 piano rolls) that monopolizes a wall in my living room; the golf-themed artwork over my couch that has lost its luster since I fell out of love with the links.
|Tootsie in Alaska, 1960s.|
My urge to purge has heightened because I am helping to clear out my recently deceased sister-in-law’s condo. (Read about Tootsie in this previous post.) Tootsie acquired a lot of stuff in her 82 years. Figurines, china, silver, and memorabilia are cool, but tax records from the 70s? It's been like an architectural dig. We’ve filled a dozen trash dumpsters and donated five carloads of books, clothes, and household items to the Medical Mission Sisters thrift shop. And we’re not done yet.
Tootsie worried about what would happen to her good stuff: Aunt Anna’s fine china, the grandmother clock, the red velvet Victorian chair and other things. This stuff is now with siblings, nieces and nephews, probably parked in their basements and attics. I wonder how long they will keep these treasures before they end up in a garage sale or on Craig’s List. It’s Tootsie’s stuff, after all, not their stuff.
I had a soft spot for the old gal, so I’ve adopted her plants; I saved a few photos of her, some old film cameras and a funny little candlestick holder from 1894 that came with the patent paperwork. Other than the photo, the stuff doesn’t represent Tootsie to me. A year from now, it will just be stuff.
|Wishful thinking on my part?|
I am not in Tootsie’s league in terms of stuff, but I am not without sin. After this experience, I’m committed to gradually clear out my stuff as a gift to my son.
I wonder if that rocking horse of his I have saved for my first grandchild since 1982 will still be in the attic in 2020?
What’s your favorite stuff story? Have you acquired a treasure from a beloved relative? Why do we care about this stuff? Share your tale with 4 Broads’ readers.
After I wrote this post, I remembered this funny take by George Carlin on Stuff. Enjoy.