Wednesday, July 15, 2009

The month that was

Wow, has it really been a month since my last post? Disturbing.  Well, I guess since I'm in an airport with a laptop, I'll do a post...(Just for you, Kerry!)


So we moved.  I really doubt there is anyone who likes to move.  People like to have moved, as in past tense, as in they like getting a new house (hopefully), but the  process is a different story, I think most people would rather listen to preteen girls discuss at length the proper way to say, "Hey," as I did recently while buying some cords at Radio Shack (there are always cords you must have, until you end up with a box of cords--when you move, of course--for which there is no discernible purpose).  Incidentally, you don't want to say "Hey"  high-pitched and enthusiastically, that just sounds stupid, you want to say it tersely and cooly, kind of monotone and casual so the other person doesn't think you are TOO excited to see them.  This would be a horrible tragedy.  Cut to me and the Radio Shack man, who look at each other and silently agree to a joint ritualistic suicide.   


So, duh, I hate to move.  I think I've said before that it really makes me question consumer culture.  When you get down to it, this is all you need to live comfortably and decently in America:  Laptop, cell phone, Couch, TV, coffee table, dining room table and some chairs, a few pots and pans and such, a bed, a dresser, some towels and sheets, and maybe like 10 outfits.  I probably have about 30 outfits but I only really wear 10 anyway.   Do I really need an entire room filled with African knick-knacks?  When I am not in the process of moving, yes, I do, I can't breathe unless surrounded by wooden animal carvings.  And how will anyone know how cultured and well-traveled I am otherwise?  I can't just announce it, that would be gauche.   But when I am in the process of moving, I consider that not having to carefully wrap that hand-blown Israeli vase in 17 layers of packing paper is definitely worth the risk of everyone I know concluding I have spent my entire life in a trailer park in Arkansas.   And do I really need 4 tall bookshelves filled with books to convince people I am a genius? They should just know by reading my blog, LOL.  My blog certainly takes up less space. But then again no one but Kerry and a few other charitable souls read it, so in the boxes those books go, yes, even that Danielle Steele novel (hopefully when people look at my bookshelves, they will be so overwhelmed by the sheer volume of books, they won't notice individual titles necessarily).  Anyway, I think minimalism is very brave and self assured.  Me--I need my stuff to feel impressive.  


Do you think it is ironic that I am typing this in a word doc the top of which has a list of things I need to buy?  hmmm, just noticed that. There is no hope for me. 


There are good things about moving.  It is a wonderful opportunity to purge all the stuff you thought would make you happier and more impressive and your life more convenient but turned out to be as overhyped as the 4th Indiana Jones film (and it pains me greatly to say that).  For this move, this included, among other things, some stick up light bulbs "as seen on TV."  Don't buy those, they give off less light than a firefly, and they run on batteries so if you leave your light by accident, it's dead next time you go to use it.  And you never ever need more than one.  I mistakenly bought 4--for the low low price of $29.99! In Europe, they sell for easily twice that amount!--not realizing you don't replace the bulb, you replace the batteries.  Money down the drain.  But I digress.  


Moving also gives you the opportunity to "get organized," which is another way of making oneself feel successful.  Everyone wants to look around their house and say to themselves, "Not only do I own a butt load of crap, I have mastered my crap.  You don't see my crap running all over a desk or table loosey-goosey.  No, I have put my crap in its place and shown it who is boss."  Moving into a new house gives you a chance to reassert your authority in case you have lost control.   Nothing says, "I own you," like throwing the object into a box and sealing it with tape.  Of course, you may have to go buy more crap in order to whip the crap you already own into shape.  That is why we have the Container Store, which is the consumer society equivalent of a training camp for Nazi prison guards.  You come to us, we give you the tools you need to have absolute power.  Those paper clips in your desk drawer will NEVER AGAIN run amok, we have a container for that.  Heck, we have a container to organize your tampons by absorbency if that is your thing.  If you buy everything we have, you pretty much will be God.  


But generally, moving sucks, and I am might glad my latest (and hopefully last for awhile) is over.  Now I only need to survive the kitchen remodel...