Pack Rat, Pack!
All you have to do is look in my purse to know, beyond a shadow of a doubt, that I have a disorder. My bag, which once contained a hammer, nails, a baby shoe, and a tiny rubber pterodactyl at the same time, is home to an unspeakably large collection of the most useless, most ridiculous, and most confounding junk in creation.
Multiply this by three rooms full of belongings and one will begin to see the extent of my dementia.
I cannot throw anything away. Nothing, nothing, nothing. I spent several hours this weekend in my basement going through boxes upon boxes of God knows what, none of which I've even touched since I left Oberlin. Considering I haven't needed anything in them in a year, one would assume that I could throw most of it out. No. Instead, I have to open every notebook to search for precious doodles, which will be added to my folder of doodles for...for what? For framing? For use as currency should bored eleven-year-olds stage a coup? To send to Sallie Mae as proof that my loan repayment should be cancelled on the grounds that the most I got out of History of Geology was a really great martian picture?
After a few hours I did begin to throw away some things, but still not nearly as much as I should. All the programs from freshman year classical concerts my friends convinced me would be fun and not boring, for example. Some of them were fun and not boring. Most, however, were deadly. It is not healthy to keep a paper record of all the hours one spent in a chapel counting decorative light fixtures.
I threw those out.
I also tossed tins upon tins of pennies, all of which would be perfectly redeemable had I not managed to enclose a few batteries in each one. I put the tins aside with the intent of sorting the nontoxic pennies from the ones coated in some kind of fuzzy blue acid crystal chemical complex, but then did a little math and realized I might be touching battery acid in order to gain approximately three dollars.
I threw those out too.
I still can't get rid of birthday cards, or markers, or this roll of pink metallic streamers that I stole from the leftover Drag Ball supplies in 2003. Paired with the unopened bag of heart confetti I can't throw out, I've got all the decorations I'll ever need for the Valentine's Day party I will never, ever throw.
Those went in the "keep" box.
At least there's only one "keep" box. It used to be six.
And this is just my college stuff. I will need superhuman strength to tackle the boxes of stuff stored in the empty room upstairs, all of which I cleared out of my room when I entered high school on the grounds that it was "little kid stuff." I had to have thrown some things away at that point, but I must've had very strict requirements for what qualified as garbage. I can clearly remember putting my entire fifth grade math binder in one of those boxes, though, because "I'll want to see that some day."
What day? What goddamn day? Long Division Refresher Day? Prepubescent Handwriting Analysis Day? Show My Children How Poor I Was At Adding Fractions Day? Make Paper-Mache Out Of Vintage Math Assignments Day?
I am a sick person who must, must be stopped.
The next time anyone sees me put a parking receipt in my purse, grab my hand and smack it until I let go. I think I have found a parking receipt for each business day of the last eleven months. If you see me try to purchase a coffee cup, punch my head until I'm bleeding. You have my permission. I have more coffee cups than effin' Pottery Barn.
However, I'm allowed to have as many scarves as I want. I found a whole boxful and I'm thrilled. Easily thirty-something and counting. I'm a scarfoholic and ain't nobody gonna hold me down. Oh no.
I will win, hands down, on Who Can Keep Their Neck Warmest? Day.