Tricky Dave

California guys can be pretty tricky.

A Guy Named Dave in San Diego has come up wth his personal challenge for consumerism run amuck. He says"I will only have 100 personal things by November 12, 2008 and I will live with 100 personal items for one year." He has set the rules - this is his challenge.

People are writing about him and his challenge. Read Time Magazine. Crowds are standing back in awe - watching and wishing.Check his blog to find out more and to follow his progress. I did - I could not resist.

Would he have an answer to help me get rid of stuff? Does he have a super strategy that I can borrow to simplify my life.

Well, let me tell you - he does have a gimmick and its not going to help me one bit.

His list of personal things is pared down and getting skinnier - that is true. Electronics and underwear are counted. But - and here is the clever part. It does not include "shared" items in the family. Right tricky there, Dave.

Items like dishes and silverware, pots and pans, basic furniture, linens etc - you get my point. Things that in my life have always ended up in my pile of stuff, up to me to think about. I remember how I learned they were mine. Three weeks after we got married there were no clean towels and it became clear it was my job to wash my towels.

Dave is keeping two small plastic boxes of memorabilia in the garage. Big deal. Where are the family photo albums, the genealogy files, the trip files, Aunt Susie's quilt, the hand crocheted doilies that Cousin Alice made, the kids baby shoes and on and on and on. Do his boxes include the kids report cards, hand prints, art work and more and more and more.

Whenever I begin to think of paring down - whether to 100 items or 1,000 items or endlesslly more its about choices -and discarding bits of our life and our history. Bottom line, I can't do it.

Good luck Dave. I have no doubt you wlll make your goal.

I wonder - where is you wife - out back, hunting and gathering - sifting through your trash?


Anonymous said...

I can't go to his level, and wouldn't want to actually. I don't think I could even reduce to 100 storytelling books. I do need to do more, though, and wish I had done so before so many people had to help me carry this obscene number of boxes to my new home. I'd count the boxes, but I don't think I really want to know. The library and Y have received many books and magazines, FISH and Goodwill have taken other stuff, and Freecycle has produced nice people who took much of it. My friend Sue Hinkel said the putting away stage is also good for giving away, and I've started a "present box." I think I'll do reverse housewarming -- don't bring stuff; take it.

Granny Sue said...

I understand what Mary is saying, and quiver at the thought of having to move and sort through all this stuff. And yet...it inspires me. I like to look at things, think about them. I have "memory boxes" of letters, the boys' art projects, pictures, etc. It's my life, stored away.

When my parents died, we were so grateful and amazed to find boxes and boxes of old letters we didn't know existed. It was like time traveling to read them. I am so grateful they took the time to save all that for us to discover.


Exactly - A Guy Named Dave and his challenge - interests me - challenges me - but I know I won't let go of the "stuff" of my life.

When Daddy died I opened a desk drawer and inside a file folder were several of my report cards, a few newspaper clippings from my high school years and some of the postcards I had sent him. It was an important hug from a man who rarely gave them.

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