Tuesday, September 1, 2009

I don't have a picture for this... or maybe I do ...

I am having a minor crisis and it seems to me that a lot of people are pondering a similar thing

I mentioned the TV show about Hoarders that I was watching while salvaging little pieces of unused yarn. I heard one of the hoarders say... not an exact quote but close ... That yogurt may have expired in 1997 but what is going to happen to it? It will just get more sour as it ages.

Now, I have uttered words to that effect about yogurt. Not, mind you, yogurt that has been sitting around for 12 years, but yogurt that HAD been around for a bit like maybe a month. It didn't have mold on it or in it, I ate it and survived..... but I have the hoarder gene, I am absolutely sure of it.

Then there was this wonderful piece about scarcity ... or not.
there was this from the Voodoo Cafe about the Myth of Scarcity
and now Romilly is pondering similar issues...

What's up with that, Doc? are we all pulling similar issues from our past at the same time? I have more yarn than I could knit up if I knit non-stop from now til Hell freezes over. I have buttons and buckles and odd bits of flattened metal that were run over by several trucks in the street. The important thing is that I can find all of them. My justification is that if I WERE a Hoarder I would know I had them but I wouldn't be able to find them.

In an attempt to reduce the boxes that contained unknown items, I pulled down a box that said "STUFF from mom and dad, to go through" on the label (see, labeled, NOT hoarder).

I had only a few days to go through the apartment where my parents had lived ... and saved everything plastic that they touched ... for over 40 years, so only a limited amount came home with me. It was touch and go in any case, in among the Christmas Cards received in the 1950's I found my father's naturalization papers from the 1930's when he became a citizen. The ORIGINALS, not copies, so I had to sift and hope I was getting everything important. Chiefly I saved that big box and some photo albums.

What I did get, I found the other night, was 30 years of handwritten letters in German, in spidery handwriting on aeropostal paper from the family I know next to nothing about who used to live in Berlin. The letters date from 1920 and continue up to the 50's. I have them separated by decade and am hooking them up with pictures from the same decade so I can get an idea of who is who. I will eventually find someone to try reading them, just to see if they are interesting, but for now they are all terra incognita.

My father was a hoarder, my mother was a destroyer, so how these survived is a mystery. A journal of my mother's survived also and after looking through it I did a mad thing. I gathered up all my old morning pages journals and got rid of them. I had them for years and years and what I found on skimming through them was that I was pondering the same verse, not quite like the first over and over. I decided that maybe just chucking them and starting anew would move the verse a bit further along.

So this is a pondering of saving and spending, and there is a lot of similar pondering going around it seems, not just here above the G.W.B. I think my son was a little appalled that I had trashed the journals, but I feel a little lighter for having done it. Of course he might have been happier if I had gotten rid of that box of smashed metal pieces from the streets of New York.

Somehow there is a lot of mystery revolving around old letters in German in Gothic script and not much mystery about me pondering my weight or how hard I am working and at what. Maybe I should just leave the letters untranslated and pretend I know what is in them.

What are you saving? What are you spending?

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