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the comforts of clutter

At this time of year I go into dormouse mode, and start lining my nest with things. Shiny things, gleamy things, dreamy things, pretty things, tasty things. Like most British mammals, I don't entirely hibernate, but I like to spend a lot of time in my cosy nest, and I like my cosy nest to be well-lined, like a winter coat.

I think that being surrounded by beautiful, interesting things, things that remind you of good times, mementos and souvenirs, gizmos and gadgets and bit and bobs is deeply soothing --especially when the weather gets grim and going out seems like less and less of an agreeable prospect. You feel set up, taken care of. There's no shortage of entertainment and interest.

This isn't to say that I bring everything home, or that everything I bring home I keep. There's a world of difference between despairing clutter and that excresecence of mindfulness, that fills the homes of people who love stuff.

It's time for late harvest now, time to look at all of those random things that have followed me home in spring and summer, and see what will stay, and what will be passed along. To ask of them the usual questions:

Is it beautiful?
Is it useful?
Does it make me happy?
Is it entirely itself?
Can it be used to make something else?
Will I actually get round to doing that?

And then some to keep, and some to pass on. Some to hold onto and some to let go. Until everything is in its place (more or less) and the whole happy round can start again.


( 5 worms — Feed the birds )
(Deleted comment)
10th Nov, 2009 22:33 (UTC)
"Is it beautiful?" in it's own way.
"Is it useful?" it's as useful as the TV, and I'm not throwing that out.
"Does it make me happy?" Parting with it would make me unhappy.
"Is it entirely itself?" ...don't understand this one, but...
"Can it be used to make something else?" Yes, or inspire something, something.
"Will I actually get round to doing that?" never say never.
11th Nov, 2009 18:53 (UTC)
"Is it hard to dust?"
11th Nov, 2009 23:25 (UTC)
"Is it actively decaying?"
11th Nov, 2009 20:44 (UTC)
I have a similar thing for jewellery, it's not just about the shiny. When I'm having a crap day at work I'll glance at my ring and think for example, "got that on a lovely weekend hanging out with Badass" and the memory cheers me.

The piece I wear the most at the moment is just a worthless bit of wood on a leather thong, but when I'm pissed off at work (which is a lot at the moment) I'll reach up and feel the smoothness of the wood, and remember 3 exceptional days on Easter Island. Memory is priceless.
11th Nov, 2009 23:28 (UTC)
does it make you happy?
...and things can open the route to memory.

One of the things I threw away when I moved last was an old pile of negative reviews, snarky notes and ambivalent letters. Let them go; keep the good stuff...
( 5 worms — Feed the birds )