Why is this blog named after a doorbell?

August 25, 2007

It’s a symbol of the problem I have with getting rid of stuff. I found this item while I was clearing out a table drawer in the basement of my parent’s house. I remembered this bakelite doorbell from my childhood. Seems like it has been around forever – unsure where it came from. I think I used it a few times when I was a kid, making electricity experiments with batteries and flashlight bulbs. Anyway, it was in the drawer with a bunch of old craft-type items which I tossed into the trash bag. Cardboard, paintbrushes, string, rusty safety-scissors. I hesitated, but tossed the doorbell in the bag too. When I was done, and about to tie the top of the bag, I looked in and saw the doorbell. I took it out of the bag and put it in my pocket. Then I tied the bag and hauled it outside. This old doorbell has no use for me at all, but it is perfectly functional. It could be used as an electric switch, and it does look cool. It’s actually made of genuine bakelite, so it has a nice retro/antique quality to it. There is no reason for me to keep it, but I do.

It’s like this with me – if something is not obviously garbage, and I judge that it COULD BE USED – even if I have no use for it, then I can’t throw it away. There are stacks of boxes here full of things that I don’t want, but I don’t know what to do with them. Old cameras, comic books, office supplies, computer cables, toys, seashells, VHS tapes, ashtrays, woodworking tools, etc. The list goes on and on.

Are you like this as well? Maybe you have some advice. Almost all of this clutter needs to go, preferably to a good home, as I truly am a tormented minimalist.

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