Too much stuff

I have too much stuff (plants, ornaments, paintings, clothes), but I remember how I got every bit of clutter and just find it very hard to let go of them. I have moved things around and chucked some stuff out. But the majority of it remains. I would like to tidy up the place and would start by with living room. That would be my plan if I had to chose a new years resolution, but I can’t suss out how to get rid of more things!

Tidied cupboard

About twelve inches of paperwork removed from this cupboard, my paintbrushes stored in vases, a star mobile lit at the back of the cupboard (it’s on a cable and won’t work anymore when it’s hanging up). Two glasses of coffee liquor over ice. It actually feels quite grown up. I can also get at my orchid plants in the window, one of which I seem to have killed. I have got to finish off by tidying the cupboard next to this. I’d like to have it done by Christmas if I feel OK. Housework? I hate it. But sometimes you have to do it….

College work

I’m doing a single page narrative of how someone’s life has changed for the worse. So I chose hoarding as it’s insideous and creeps up on people. This is close to finished but I may add more. What do you think….

We had training at work about how to try and help hoarders. You can’t just tell people to throw things away, it won’t work. People become attached emotionally to their objects, an empty biscuit box might remind them of a relative they have lost. A pair of old shoes, a romantic holiday. Each item can be invested in memories and if they lose the object they fear they can lose the memory…. Sometimes people’s lives are overwhelming, if they live on their own with not many social contacts or an illness they may no be able to cope. Who do they turn to? And there is the embarrassment factor as well. Turning friends and family away because it’s hard to admit they have a problem. That’s what this little 9 panel story is about.

This image is in CYMK colours as it may be printed later. The size has to fit an A4 page with enough margins so the ink doesn’t bleed off the edges.

Fish trapped in glass

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‘I  admit it’ , she said, ‘ I am a hoarder’ .

‘We are concerned about your safety’, said the officer. ‘I have to tell you that, unless you clear up, your home is at risk’.

She closed the door as he left, and thought about what he had said. ‘this is my home’ she thought. ‘But everything I have means something, I love all my nic nacks, my ornaments’.

Reluctantly she started to look through her things, ‘this is the glass cat with the fish, nan gave it me, what shall I do?’

The knock on the door a fortnight later jarred her out of her reverie. ‘who is it?’, ‘your housing officer’ came the reply.

‘Go Away!’ she shouted. ‘I don’t want to see you!’

‘I’m afraid you must. I have a notice of seeking possession here if you won’t work with me!’

‘Work with you? All you did was come round and tell me off!’

‘anyway’ she said ‘I’m buying the house’.

The officer was confused. ‘What do you mean?’ he shouted through the letterbox.

‘My nans glass cat! – turns out it belonged to someone famous, priceless, they called it on the antique street show’.

Silence.

‘I’m rich she said, now Go Away!’

Shopping

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I knew I was going to have to go out shopping when my hubby went out to get loo roll and came back with a light bulb!

I went out to try and get a week’s shopping, or more if I can make it last. I usually shop every few days because I don’t have the storage space in my small kitchen for much, and because I only have a small fridge freezer I can’t fit much in that.

First shop, no meat, got a couple of veggie lasagne’s. Two bananas (I left two behind), some mixed veg and a few more things. Second shop. There was no loo paper (what is it with people?) so I bought their last box of man sized tissues. (that always makes me laugh, are they six foot tall tissues?) Third shop, a few pieces of chicken, some burgers, celery, pasta sauce, a bit more.

I gave up the search and came home. One day soon the hoarding will stop.. It isn’t sensible, but what is? I have a feeling that this is partly being driven by that stupidity called Brexit. I think that people have been so wound up by that, that they have got into a seige mentality. The British can be very bloody minded. Its also difficult not to relate it to the idea that the country expects to be cut off from the European continent and is acting like it has already happened.

So what can we do? Deal with the virus, try and stay inside and stay safe. I will still have to go shopping. As to the B word. Maybe this will make people realise its not such a good idea after all….

I’ve read a few of John Wyndhams’ books about the world order collapsing ( Day of the Triffids, The Kraken Wakes,) he doesn’t mention toilet rolls once!

Soft toys

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I seem to have collected a lot of these over the years. There’s a cat, two owls and a reindeer at least. I was given a couple of them and bought a few more. I like cute things, although I do wonder whether collecting them is sensible. Humans have a tendency to feel attached to inanimate objects. Like children love their toys, I guess adults love ornaments and objects. Sometimes this leads to hoarding, other times if the person is rich it might lead to collections of fine art. I think these could be described as two sides of the same coin. Both are ways of giving you pleasure, a good feeling each time you buy something, or hold it. But that feeling and impulse to buy can be an addiction. Or just holding onto belongings from a parent. Even a crisp packet that a good friend has eaten out of can have significance. So much so that it cannot be disposed of. Collection and hoarding are not so different…..

Tidying up

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My world is full of stuff

it’s mainly layers of paper.

Carefully stored in piles.

I might use that photo as an inspitation,

For a painting or a drawing,

I might need that statement,

I might read that book

Eventually.

But piles of stuff turn into columns,

Columns start to tower over you.

Idea. ” I’ll tidy up”.

Trouble is you have to deconstruct.

Build new towers to winnow out stuff.

So,

Some stuff to burn or shred,

Some stuff to give to charity,

Some stuff to read,

Some stuff to pile back up,

till I find space on a bookshelf……  

I’ll just go and lie down in a darkened room.