Feeling better, one step at a time

I’ve been what the folks in the museum game call de-acquisitioning, except I don’t get money when I get rid of stuff. I get floor space and, oddly, increased peace of mind, clearly a good deal.

Deciding what to get rid of tends to be dicey for me. For instance, there’s this box that probably once held an online purchase. It’s a serious box made of cardboard that’s just this side of wood, suitable for shipping anything. We don’t have much in the way of storage space at our house, so a good box has few places to be out of the way until another chance for it to be useful comes up.

I could recycle it, but it doesn’t need recycling. It’s perfectly good right now with no additional energy expenditure. I’ve been moving that box around for more than a year, and not once have I had something to ship that would fit in it. Maybe I’ll recycle it anyway.

Then there’s the vacation snapshot of some friends and our family on a camping trip to Madeline Island. My impulse is to scan it into the picture folder on my computer, but my scanner is neurotic and frustrating to use. Somewhere there are actual photo albums, but I don’t want to stop in the middle of my merciless culling to, first, find my wife, who’s bound to know the photo-album coordinates, and, second, to get out the albums, and, third, decide which album to put this lone snapshot in. I put it in a drawer.

Worst of all are the cryptic notes designed to jog my memory and that do no such thing. I have on yellow ruled paper the name, address, and telephone number of someone I don’t remember at all. He wrote it, I don’t think it’s recent, and odds are whatever he wanted it’s too late for anyway. On the other hand, if I’m willing to look like the complete boob, I could find out what it’s all about. No problem, especially since I am, in this instance, a boob.

Recently I’ve actually been a boob fairly often, and for long periods, and I find I don’t much care how I appear to be. So I found that yellow paper and, prepared to admit boobdom in exchange for some straight answers, I called the telephone number.

The man’s voice in the recorded greeting said the right name, and I left him a clear message. Then I recycled that piece of paper and turned my attention away from the blasted note, which is where the peace of mind came in.