Wednesday, May 5, 2010


Oddly, this is not about me feeling stuffed with grilled chicken and broccoli.

Sigh....I wish I were neat as a pin. I'm more neat as a pen -- a pigpen, that is.

Sorry to veer away from the ever-exciting topic of what I'm eating, but I had to tackle this topic.

First let me preface this expose by saying that I am not living in squalor or anything. I have nice things. Nice furniture. I have monogrammed napkins and use chargers with my plates. My favorite tool in my cleaning arsenal is a bottle of water/bleach mixture, which I've sprayed all over hell and half of Georgia. Which is probably also why most of my clothes have teeny tiny bleach spots on them. Anyway. I'm not disgusting or anything -- I had an ex who was absolutely foul (readers of my other blog can attest -- holla). Even John would tell you -- most of the time, when he comes over, I've vacuumed and cleaned and spritzed and sprayed. However. 

I spent 15 minutes looking for a roll of tape today. If a sack of recycling weren't still sitting on my counter and had been taken out days ago like a normal person would've done, I would've seen the fucking tape. As it were, I was stomping around, wondering where in the hell I could've put it. Maybe I'd eaten it, since tape, as you know, among other delicious things, has no carbs.

Found in the trunk of my car today? A ziploc baggie of medicine (including my thyroid medicine which is, like, important) that I've been looking for since last week. It had rolled out from a duffel bag and lodged under the two fake mini Christmas trees I rescued from the trash area of my apartment in January, not to mention the broken-down cardboard box and packing material stuffed in the trunk from when I opened my George Foreman 360 grill.

That grill, BTW? Badass. And those trees? Nothing wrong with them. They're going to look darling outside my door this next Christmas. But seeing as how I literally have no room for them in my apartment, they're in the trunk of my car. Obscuring shit.

I've often cited a theory of mine. An allegory, if you will, about stuff. My assertion is that you can tell a helluva lot about a person just by nosing around their living quarters. As it stands this minute, I am jam-packed. To the gills.

( the windows, to the walls...til the sweat...okay nevermind.)

I have bullshit in this apartment that has literally accumulated to the point that I no longer have room. You should see my pantry. Cans stacked on top of another can that's precariously perched on top of something else. It's only a matter of time before a gigantic can of chunk chicken that was resting haphazardly atop something else comes cascading down and breaks my goddamned toe. I'm telling you -- a matter of time.

I have two walk-in closets in my bedroom, and they're both so full of shit that the term walk-in really no longer applies. Ditto my linen closet, the guest room closet, the hall closet, the buffet in the dining room, and every fucking drawer of every piece of furniture in this apartment.

It's not like a hoarding thing, either. (Hoes, please, I've seen that show, and I expect to see my ex on it in the near future. But that ain't me.) I can throw out, donate and give away things in a heartbeat. I sell shit on eBay. It's just that as I'm getting rid of things, I keep acquiring other things.

So, the allegory is: my house is brimming with too much bullshit, and so am I the person. My house (apartment, whatever) is me: full of things I no longer need or want, but with no idea how to get rid of them.

I've long envied minimalists. That said, they bore the shit out of me and generally come across as unlikeable since they're fastidiously anal. But I dig their style. If I could incorporate some of that into my way of life, it'd be awesome.

 (Is it me,or does this room make anyone feel....nervous?)

But the question is, can you change things like that about yourself? I mean, I just came in from outside and took off my cardigan and draped it over the back of my barstool. Chances are, it'll still be there in a week. I kick off shoes wherever and leave them there. I can sleep (mightily, even) with a sink full of dirty dishes in the other room. Don't care. Is it just not in my DNA to be tidy and spare, or is it that I just haven't tried hard enough?

And I wasn't raised this way! Good God my parents are neatniks. I think my father personally uses every single thing he owns. There's just nothing extraneous. And my mother has zero sentimentality. "Oh, look, the roller skates you had as a kid. (pauses thoughtfully.) Throw those sons of bitches out. What in the hell am I gonna do with them?" So how I ended up like this is beyond me.

(damned tree huggers....)

I think part of it is whether or not you have an attachment to the things you own. Personally, I'm a homebody. I feel most comfortable with my things around me, in my own routine. Since I work from home, I spend a lot of time here. I hardly ever go out to eat, so I cook here all the time too. My life's here. However, if it burned down tomorrow, so long as I rescued my precious cat, I wouldn't care. Hell, I might even be relieved. But I could see myself starting over and ending up with just as much shit as I have now. So, it's not some unholy attachment. I just like comfort. Always have. I am the MOST self-indulgent person you will ever meet. Trust me on that. Or maybe I'm just lazy.

I have the energy level of a klonapin-addicted three-toed sloth freebasing quaaludes, so needless to say, getting momentum to start mini projects of cleaning this or that requires a lot out of me. Plus -- and here's another thing about me -- when I do start projects, guess what?

Correct. I rarely finish them. I get so distracted. A task that should take me 30 minutes ends up taking me 3 hours because a) when I do clean and organize, even Martha Stewart gets the fuck out of my way because I am nothing if not thorough and b) I'm like a raccoon -- if, during my chore, I stumble across something shiny and interesting, I lose my focus. You know, I scoffed at my old Russian doctor (think Borat, but fat and with a pinky ring) who insisted I had ADD. But maybe that swarthy bastard actually had a point.

I guess when you get to the point where you feel physically and mentally hampered by the shit surrounding you and taking up space in your world is when you know there's a problem. Rational people (my shrink) would encourage me to tackle one tiny project at a time. Somehow, though, I'm one of those people who has to do everything in one fell swoop. I am notorious for taking on more than I can handle and then crapping out somewhere in the middle. And then whining about it. And beating myself up about it. Cycle, cycle, cycle.

I guess I should boogie, since I have about 1300 loads of laundry I need to...oh hey look! Something sparkly!

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