Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Ok, but how did I get here?

Many people in western society are doomed to continue collecting things they don't need throughout their entire lives. I don't want to be one of those people. Anymore.

My life revolves around stuff. It always has. I'm not in retail, but I am trained as an archaeologist. Archaeology is all about STUFF. I love it! Not only that, but I've always been intrigued by detective work. Again, stuff is important in determining what went on when, where, why, and who was involved. You see how archaeology and detective work are so similar? Both require the close observation of objects, debris, remains, garbage. I like psychology, too, and am intrigued by how people place their things, how they use them, and why certain objects are more important than others. Why do people collect? Why do people write in journals? Why do we take photographs? Why do we still want to hold those photos in our hands?

Do my interests excuse my own collection of stuff? No, I don't think so.

Even before I knew those things about myself, I collected things. Rocks. Legos (I'd hoard them underneath my bed). Toys (I'd stash them in paper bags and carry them around the house). Stickers (Rarely used - I'd leave them pristine). Apparently I had a great fear that my younger sister would take my stuff and destroy it.

Later, I started collecting boxes. And bags. Absurd, isn't it? I started collecting things used to store stuff! I never threw anything out. I might need it later. Oh, sure, I'd throw out packaging and food remains. But, homework? No, never. Instructions? Nope. Old costume jewelry? I might need it. Can you imagine how many years of magazines I had stashed? No, I doubt you can.

Box o'memories... or something like that.
Stuff I collected, mostly from the summer of 1996 (my first archaeological dig)

Honestly, it never crossed my mind that I shouldn't keep everything. Never. I knew I was a pack rat. My sister teased me about it, but I was fine with who I was. For the most part.

So what changed in my head? I met someone.

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