“Only after disaster can we be resurrected.” Chuck Palahniuk, Fight Club

Quote(s) from Chuck Palahniuk, Fight Club.

Chuck Palahniuk, Fight Club. The things you own end up owning you.Ever since I first read Fight Club I’ve sort of been in love with Tyler Durden. I mean, who wasn’t? Who isn’t still? Well, maybe your definition of sexy is different from mine, and maybe your ideals weren’t so wonderfully summed up in that particular piece of literature. 

I’m not saying I’m living the perfect edition of Fight Club : South Florida or anything, and my stuff owns me probably as much as I own it, but hey, like Tyler says, “May I never be complete. May I never be content. May I never be perfect.” I am a work in progress. I will never be complete. 

So, purpose to this intro? I’m planning another no-spend month, coupled with another get-this-crap-out-of-my-home spree. I have a corner full of stuff I can’t bear to part with, but never use. Is it pretty? No. Is it useful? Obviously not. Does it make me happy? Not seeing it piled up not being used. That means it’s junk. 

I have bags upon bags to take over to Women in Distress. I have items I’ve been meaning to send to friends for over a year. Over two years in some cases. I have items, to jump into Marla for a minute, that I loved intensely for one day, and then tossed. I used to ask myself before I bought something if I would use it. If I knew the answer was once, but it would be an amazing once, I tried not to buy it. I feel like I live in a room full of once. That needs to change. 

Is this my manifesto? Absolutely not. What’s funny is, it might not be far off. That amazing art project I’ve been working on? It’s manifesto is exactly about how disposable we’ve become as a people. Everything ties back into garbage. 

I wish my original engagement ring still fit. It was knot work and amber, and amazing. The ring I’ve been wearing for the last couple of years I bought with birthday money. It’s an obnoxious princess cut rock. It’s fake. I’m ok with that. I’m kind of happier with that than I would be wearing a house on my finger. But I would love that “house” intensely. For a day. Then my sensibilities would kick in and I’d imagine all the other things that could be done with that money. I wish that little bit of amber still fit. I’ve loved it intensely for more years than I think I’ve ever loved anything.

So there is my day! I’m boxing things up, shipping them out, bagging them up, giving them away. “It’s only after we’ve lost everything that we’re free to do anything.” I don’t intend to lose anything, and it’s not some amazing Zen minimalist experience I’m looking for. I intend to downsize. Clear out. My clothes shouldn’t overflow into baskets. The only thing I need a hundred of is bandaids. Some days I wish everything would just disappear. It’s so much easier starting from scratch than culling memories. My things need to stop owning me. I admit, I am off to Target to get a few storage bins, but my plan is, if I can’t store it properly, it can’t be in my home. I think I might come out ahead. I like to think teenage me wouldn’t be totally disappointed in who we’ve become, and who we’re still trying to be, and that we haven’t forgotten all of our ideals in exchange for “stuff”.

2 Comments

  1. I love the idea of a “no-spend month” and donating your things instead of just throwing them away is awesome :) Kudos for your efforts to live a more efficient and grateful life.

    • Sometimes I feel like the more I try not to spend, the more I wind up spending. It fluctuates. Maybe I’m just more hyper-aware of it when I’m trying not to let go of so much money on things I so do not need?

      Regardless, it really makes me think, and think again, about purchases and seeing what I have at home that is “just as good”.

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