Saturday, May 15, 2010

Stuff and Nonsense

Stuff. People are in love with stuff. I'm a people too, so I gotta admit that I appreciate accumulating my share of stuff. I try not to love my stuff as much as some people do, but yeah ... mea culpa. (Just had to put that out there so you can see at the outset that I'm not being too holier than thou.)

But ... I was not one of the people thronging the sidewalk just outside my own door this morning.You see, our neighbourhood had its annual (sometimes semi-annual) garage sale today. Sheesh! You shoulda seen the crowd.

We live in townhouses, so there are lots of houses with stuff to pawn off. Even though half of the houses (like us) choose not to participate, half do, so garage-sale-devotees can still hit a lot of vendors in a short time. So ... yes ... they come by the busload (not really, but it sure seemed like it this morning).

When we slipped out in the early afternoon to run this errand and that, we found more garage sales all over town. A community sale here, a cancer marathon sale there, and many private sales here and there. Many.

All so people can get more stuff.

If I were to participate, I'd probably see stuff that I would like to have. So, I choose not to participate, 'cause I gots enough stuff, eh? Well, not really, but I try to be selective, and if I stay away from such events, I find that I can be. I mean to say, they don't sell my wants such as high tech stuff at garage sales anyway. I won't find my new camera there or a terrabyte hard drive or ... well, you get the idea. That's not really all that much stuff that I lust after though, so I think I'm sorta, kinda cool that way.

When the street sale ended at noon, I saw various neighbours putting their unsold stuff in the trunks of their cars (I wish we said boots like the clever Brits). After making whatever they could off sales, they would be taking the unwanted stuff to the local Goodwill (or equivalent) Dropoff. Cuppa and I prefer to do that first and just get the stuff out of the way and to heck with the garage sale pittance. It doesn't make us any better, but it does make us a bit different, I guess.

What is it about people and their stuff? We have more stuff than anybody at any time in history, but we keep wanting more. Why do we need and want so much stuff? Is it the only way many have of trying (in vain, no doubt) to fill ourselves up?

Stuff and nonsense, say I.

(Sincere apologies if you're a garage sale person. Some of my best friends ... etc. )


Pearl said...

that's what I forget. there was a yard sale a few streets over. I just go for the chatting tho, or if there's cookies. schtuff, it's overwhelming to be owned by things.

Cathy said...

Ha! This is great AC. I love that you added the apology at the end.

Not necessary in my case. My hubby and I are pitchers. It's outta here.

Don't be too hard on yourself and humanity for its acquisitiveness. I think it's hardwired. It was selected for genetically in our ancient forbears. Those who horded - probably had a survival advantage.

Anyway, if you're like me - as I age - 'stuff' becomes less interesting. That's a good thing.

Hmmmm. I think my response is as long as your post which was pleasingly provocative.

Holly, the Old Western Gal said...

It's nuts -- here in the U.S. people pay THOUSANDS a year to STORE STUFF that they don't need, don't use, and really don't even quite know they have.

jinksy said...

You make it worth pondering on the phrase 'the stuff of life'...

Ginnie said...

I often wonder about this world that we live in. It seems that we who have so much keep wanting more and there's the other side that has hardly anything. Not fair at all. I wonder what it would be like if we were all dumped into a big sack and everything was divided evenly ??? You can bet we'd be happy with what we had then.

Anonymous said...

Ah A/C.. your post is timely for me in a couple of ways. Firstly, after just having to downsize my Mom's life prior to her moving... I too am rather focused on stuff...and more to the point, just how much stuff can quietly accumulate over the years. Having to get rid of so much, so quickly, I couldn't help but reflect on my own situation and found myself ponder on the needs and wants of it all.

Just this week Winnipeg held the first of its "Give-Away" weekends. Winnipeger's placed unwanted items (including furniture) on their curbs with FREE signs. Others cruised the streets and picked and chose from the offerings. Happily all of our curbed items disappeared during the course of the day. What's that saying.. "One man's garbage.. another man's treasure." :-)

Donna said...

My feelings on Stuff....

The More Stuff you own, the More Stuff you have to clean...
end of Stuff...

Anvilcloud said...

What is this cleaning thing that you talk about?

Mara said...

I once went shopping with a friend and she taught me a great lesson: if it needs dusting, you don't need it!

I do like those type of sales though, even if just to see what people try and sell! Most of it couldn't even be classed as 'stuff' anymore!

Cathy said...

One of your commenters above, said something about people paying money for storage.

Well. I've got a story. I had some items that I just couldn't bring myself to pitch.

Rented a smallish storage unit. Hadn't been in there in a year. Dreaded having to look through it.

The storage people called me a couple months ago. Seems the unit beside me had a fire.

My unit was a complete lost.

When I sounded relieved - it rather surprised the owner.

Yep. A blessed relief. Didn't have to clean the danged thing or make any decisions.

Ahhhhh . . . .:0)