Showing posts with label patriot bears. Show all posts
Showing posts with label patriot bears. Show all posts

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Accumulation of paper and its breeding

Clearing the clutter from the Secretary desk
One of my bloggy acquaintances, Vicki Lane posted last  week for Sepia Saturday about paperwork accumulations.  I got a good laugh out of  her all too true words, and pondering about  why we do this. And since this past week, I had "sort of" cleared our  secretary desk in the bedroom, the  desk that was to prevent  accumulation of paper clutter atop our kitchen counter. the desk that has now become the second step in paper/clutter processing, the desk located in another room where out of sight becomes out of mind, the  secretary desk that  for now has a rather neat top and pigeon holes and will allow closing of it's pull down  shelf.   Reading what she shared, tickled  my funny bone.  Here's the link  to Vicki's post  but the bigger question is why do we do this??? 

I'm not as bad as some and I'm not as good as others at clearing the   ephemera and paper clutter from our lives, however  like Vicki I have wondered,  "why do I do this?"  I can reason my way around this  rather harmless addiction with any  or all of the following justifications :
 This article, cartoon, clipping will make a good blog story someday; or
Here is a website I can check on later; or
I will mail this off to Sandy or Carlie, or: 
Oh, Bonnie will want to know about this;  or
Here is a book I would like to read someday; or
That's a place to visit on our travels; or
This is a lovely card that I will prop here and enjoy a  while longer,  or
This will go in the scrapbook about my father, my grandparents, etc.; or
That's a cause I want to donate $ to and will  send off a check soon; or
I will have to read that offer again, perhaps I want to subscribe; or on & on...
I have inherited this tendency to accumulate interesting items,
 I am Teofils's granddaughter.

First step of the clutter that then goes to the secretary desk.
The kitchen counter is now happily cleared except for current  cooking magazines
You may  recall my tales about my Granpap on this blog; he was the original collector of odd things.  He never went out for a daily walk without finding something to bring back home and after they sold their home and moved into a rental of rooms, he  trudged up the hill and  brought the stuff to our basement, advising my horrified mother, "listen you to me this some good stuff, not take much room, only need a  clean up, someday you gonna need it and here  you have it, it no cost you nothing' you no hafta feed it, this good stuff."  I can use that same reasoning about paper things but the truth is they do have a cost.  The cost of time spent  reviewing, sorting, filing, arranging, and or  disposing of at last.  I did not retire to  become a  paper pusher, yet I do it to myself.  

This time I found some old newspapers back to  2005 about interesting events happening locally, the 2006 invitation to our friends' surprise 50th wedding anniversary in Indiana hosted by her cousin with directions, etc., scaps with phone numbers of I know not whom nor what, some odd buttons from something  that found their way into the stack, a wedding invitation from 2008, graduation announcements from this year relatively current and now easily tossable, and some recipes which no longer sound appealing.   Once I found some cash, maybe $20, which I don't recall setting there and then I shuddered, "here I go it's happening!"   This time I had maybe  a paper grocery sack  less than 2/3 the way full with junk, so it's not so bad it just looks worse than it is. 
You get the drift and maybe you have other reasons or maybe you are able to escape the Great paper chase, maybe you are a minimalist, a real neatnik who tosses all immediately.  I once thought that computers were to rid us of paperwork and  now I have learned that I print things from them and there is another stack!

I thought when we moved to MN from CA I would no longer receive so much odd/junk mail, most of which I do process immediately into the trash can in the kitchen, but there is the occasional item for the litter pile or  later to be dealt with.  I thought wrong.  I bought an address stamp for us when we moved here because I was sure I would no longer receive those  return address labels, you know the kind, handy for envelopes, but address labels have become so ubiquitous that they have a separate side in the desk drawer and a folder atop the secretary, boy was I ever wrong there! Besides now that we send less in the snail mail and do more business online, how many address labels does one need?  I carry a small supply in my purse when I carry a purse, handy to slap onto tickets purchased at charitable drawings rather than entering the information by hand on those small lines.  Many labels  go to the waste basket right away. But after my efforts I still have quite the assortment of address labels, seasonals, and so on. 
I do not donate to many charitable organizations, willy nilly, only my few longtime favorites, besides the local church, so it is not that they have me in their sights as the next  unaware victim to send them $5.  I feel no guilt in not sending them back their nickels that they send me  nor in keeping the notepads and not sending them  any money, because this is unsolicited.   Jerry's 93 year old mother does donate $5 to every  ragtag appeal and consequently gets more junk mail than anyone in La Crescent, attested to by her mailman who has a big route in this  little town and outghta know.  Now she takes her junk mail seriously because it is addressed to her "personally" so she reads every word, never mind that her dementia  precludes comprehension or retention of what she's reading but  she  retains stacks of junk mail to read.  Her end tables and kitchen table display foot high stacks as testament to her devotion to the  printed word!  This sight makes me ever alert to not over  indulge my pack rat tendencies to that extreme!

The desk now can close
As I can justify my own weirdness, I figure this is a relatively harmless addiction, like my accumulation of  fabric stashes or books, I could always be doing something worse.  But when I spend time  clearing out what I have allowed to clutter I have to wonder, why do I do this to me?  The secretary can now resume life as a desk and a place to write out bills for snail mail, but for how long?

Patriot Bears aligning
Oh and another thing, the bedroom patriotic bears are well pleased.  They live in that room next to the desk atop their bed which is now adorned with their magnificent Salute of Roses quilt for which they waited many years, these bears are quite neat and picky and intolerant of paper stacks of distraction.  They have exercised restraint, recently with company from Colorado, but that is another blog story.  I just  don't want to try their patience too far. 
Home of the  patriot bears and the clear secretary desk