vorpal: Illustration of Alice from Alice in Wonderland putting on a crown (Default)
Alyssa ([personal profile] vorpal) wrote2010-04-13 01:24 am
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Confessions of a Pack Rat

My parents decided to have a yard sale over the weekend. They told Adam and me to gather anything we wanted to get rid of, and they told my sister and her fiance to do the same. Then they helped us lug it all to my grandmother's house, and we spent Friday and Saturday trying to pass our junk on to other people in return for some quick cash.

As I was going through our apartment, trying to find things to get rid of, I discovered something about myself that I had always suspected was true: I'm a pack rat. I hold on to things I don't need purely for sentimental value, or because I think that maybe, someday, for some unknown reason, I might end up needing them after all.

Some of the items I've kept are useless, like the cards my co-workers gave me at my going-away party when I left my last job, not to mention all of the other cards from various people that I've accumulated over the years. On the surface, they're just glorified pieces of paper, but the words written on those pieces of paper meant something to me at one time. I've even kept some of the cooler cereal box toys I've found, like a Star Wars lightsaber spoon and a plastic Star Trek badge. I tucked them away in drawers because I thought they were neat, but they're little more than trash.

Then I have stuff that's worth holding on to, like old video game systems, Batman comics, Disney Adventures magazines, and Babysitter's Club books. Things I want to keep because they have nostalgic value, and they might actually be worth more than yard sale money someday.

I spent a long time debating whether or not to get rid of some things, just standing and holding them in my hands, weighing the sentimental value against extra space and money. Eventually I somehow found the courage to place them in boxes and take them to the sale. Now my apartment is clear of a lot of stuff I didn't need, but I still can't help but feel a slight pang of loss. I'm going to end up like Monica in that episode of Friends where Chandler and Joey discover that she has a secret closet full of junk.

In the end, though, I'm glad I got rid of it all. We split the money we earned three ways, and mine and Adam's portion will fully cover the deposit on our new apartment. Although the pack rat in me had a hard time letting go of things at the yard sale, the couch potato in me is very glad that we have less stuff to pack for the move.

Disclaimer: I am nowhere near as bad as the people on the TV show Hoarders. Watching that show depresses the hell out of me and makes me want to clean, even when my apartment is spotless. D: