No matter where you go there is a phenomena that latches onto every person no matter creed or color. It’s known as “having stuff.”
A drive through any subdivision on a Saturday morning shows you exactly what happens to the person who is not aggressive in their sorting and tossing. Soon the garage is filled to capacity and running out the door sometimes necessitating the need for a storage unit at the local facility.
To get an idea of the “value” that people put on their “stuff” we need only look to the driveway in front of the house. There in the wind and rain, sleet and snow, hail and all hazards outside their garage sits a car and truck with a combined value of upward of $80,000 while worthless junk sits protected in the garage.
Old worn-out weight machines, garbage bags full of kids’ clothes, skis, boots and poles, old t-shirts now called “rags,” lawnmowers, weed eaters, Aunt Gladys' chest of drawers and other things that the sum value won’t exceed $800 but it all keeps the vehicles at bay and out of the bay.
The same holds true for the storage facilities and they harbor about the same amount of “stuff” that people just cannot seem to part with even though the storage fees eat up the entire value of the items in about six months’ rent.
Now Ol' Dutch doesn’t have a house to call home at the present time and prefers to live the nomadic life of a traveling Gypsy. This includes playing my guitar, my new squeezebox and bouncing from town to town until the locals get tired of my trying to pawn myself off as a Rain Maker or head blarney maker.
Since Ol' Dutch was unfortunate enough to lose his farm and other stuff to a conniving person of the female persuasion, he’s got too much stuff to haul around. So I ended up with a storage unit in the last place where we entertained our-not-so-peaceful domicile: Eastern Oklahoma for God's sake. I know what you are thinking: get rid of it, Dutch.
But there are things there from my grandparents and all of my tools and enough duck and goose decoys to make a flock of immense proportions. Being all sentimental about my things is kind of embarrassing for this old mountain man.
But to change any of that would require use of that four letter word “work.” And who wants to be guilty of throwing away Uncle Pete's tuba from the 1910 World’s Fair or little Susie's rocking horse that she hated and never used?
And God help those of us parents who suggest that certain items need to be removed from the house; it is akin to abandoning a child at the State Fair. We are expected to keep said items in boxes and plastic tubs until our demise at which point the children will throw them all-out themselves. This is called “parenting.”
When Ol' Dutch hit the road full time in the RV something had to give. Either I had to reduce my “stuff” or get rid of Trixie and as you can see, she ain’t going anywhere soon.
So out goes the old shovel with the Wal-Mart label that my great-great may have carried in the Civil War and some stained and yellow doilies that always fall out of the cabinet when opened.
Ol' Dutch drew the line at my favorite old shirts with stains and blotches on them, though, and they remain neatly folded in their proper place. But I am beginning to wonder why they all smell like Pledge?