Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Cleaning Up

<Rant On>
If you have reached your 70's, please start going through your stuff and getting rid of it.

If you have reached your 80's, for crying out loud, get rid of STUFF.

If you truly have some valuable things - coin collections, Ming vases, Van Gogh paintings - by all means, keep them and will them to someone.

If you have anything from the Bradford Exchange, get rid of it; it's a scam. My parents have at least 15 "collector" plates they probably paid $30 for each, which now can't be sold on ebay for over $10.00 each. That's if anyone in the family "wants" to try to sell them, pack, pay shipping and collect on them.

If you collect nails, hoses, flower pots and things you haven't touched in 10 years, throw them the hell away.

Your children DO NOT want to have to weed through a house full of things you might need one day.

</Rant Kind of Off>

Can anyone guess what I've been doing this evening? Um, I've been trying to  clean out the basement of my parents' house. Here, let me show you what an episode of "Hoarders" looks like.
Oh, and this is after I've already filled 39 black trash bags and thrown them away - using the stealth-after-midnight-to-prevent-full-blown-hissy-fit method.

This was a clothes rack Joe made. Before I took the picture, it was crammed full of clothes.  These were lovely clothes at one time. Likely there were 20 Van Heusen shirts. There were some fantastic hunting clothes. Problem being, they dry-rotted and the only thing good about them is the shotgun shells I found still in them.

This is one corner of the basement, with the gawd-awful killer stairs on the left, tables of stuff, ruined patio furniture, vermin-eaten insulated pipes, and assorted garbage on the right.

This is another corner. I've already rid this corner of 9, count 'em, NINE, old coffee pots. It also contains things from my room that they packed up in 1972 when they moved homes and didn't tell me until after the move. At least they saved my things...which I can now weed through and throw away since I haven't needed them in the last, um, 39 years. There are a few shelves of food I've canned - the shelves I could actually get to.

These are a couple of tables that likely used to be used for  something - before they were piled so high with STUFF they couldn't be used.

This was my one of my Dad's work benches. It probably was a rather nice work bench at one time. There are a few things on it I've added since there was no place else in this full basement to put them.

My goal tonight was to sweep the floor, go through the clothes on the rack and empty it so I could get to the tables and clean them so I could have a place to put the 5 sets of dishes that I've been trying to collect and handle.

You know those 1-gallon plastic containers of ice cream? Well, I filled one of them with crickets, dirt, and dust from the floor. You know those clothes you haven't worn in 20 years? Well, no one else wants to wear them either. It doesn't matter what brand name the shirts are; if clothes come back in style there's always something subtly different, and your old clothes need to be THROWN AWAY.

Those grand, brand name hunting clothes? If they crumble when you touch them, throw them away. Please unload the shotgun shells first.

The prom dress your daughter wore in 1969? Throw it away. If it's older than 30 years, it's highly likely she doesn't have an emotional attachment to it.

All those bits and pieces of pipes and wires? If your kids inherit your place and need to fix things, they're likely going to hire someone to come and really FIX things, and your bits, pieces, screws, hoses, pipes and stuff won't be used at all. Throw it away.

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