Skip to main content

Getting rid of stuff

I’m a pack rat. There’s no doubt about it. I find pleasure in accumulating and storing things. I find it hard to get rid of the things I’ve accumulated. When I do try to get rid of things, I find myself pained at the ways in which those things are used [1].

Still, I do prefer a slightly more organized world, one in which I can actually find the stuff I’ve packed away. And so I’ve not only been straightening my lab, but also getting rid of some stuff. Last week, I posted a short musing, listing some things that folks could claim. None were claimed, so a few days ago I had two students haul that stuff, and some other stuff, away. A bunch of Crayola water color paints went to Tillie [2]. She’ll make good use of them. My minivan now has three boxes of school supplies (one box of pens, one box of report covers, one box of miscellaneous supplies) to bring to the high school. The Fab Lab is taking some old microcontrollers.

My favorite part, though, was hearing about what happened when the students brought four large boxes of coin wrappers to the free random materials area in studio art. Lee Running, who is teaching a course on multiples this semester [3] saw them and said Wow, those would be great for my course. Dozens of people told me that no one would ever want the wrappers, except for recycling. Boy, they were wrong [5].

I’m now waiting to hear if Lee wants the CD cases or the adding machine rolls. I should probably offer her a chance to look through the other multiples in my lab.

What’s up next in my attempts to change, or at least to be less extreme [6]? We will see.

[1] In summer 2016, my research students started to work on cleaning out my lab. A few weeks later, I discovered that they were using my ragbond as note paper. Look, it has a watermark. What’s a watermark? That soured me on the whole process. I still haven’t found my UofC Waterbond, which I worked really hard to get. I hope it’s still in a corner somewhere, and they didn’t recycle it or turn it into paper airplanes or something.

[2] I didn’t mention those in the original musing because I knew that they would be going to Tillie.

[3] I would love to be in Lee’s course, not only because I love working in multiples, but also because I’ve yet to take a class from her and I know that she is both a spectacular artist and a spectacular teacher. Oh well, maybe I’ll find a way during my next sabbatical. It won’t be the multiples course, which I believe to be a one-off [4], but it could be something. Of course, I never did get to take Ceramics or Drawing from Jill Schrift, so maybe not.

[4] ha ha

[5] Upon reflection, our bank may have been willing to take them. Oh well, art trumps commerce, any day.

[6] Maybe I can work toward being a pack mouse, rather than a pack rat. But then I’d think about that poem by Robert Burns even more.

Version 1.0 of 2017-08-26.