Monday, July 27, 2009

Out with the Old

In 3 weeks I will be leaving this metropolis we call LaLaLand and heading down South to the home of country music, better known as Nashville, Tennessee. As I wade through the dust and grime collecting on the piles of junk I've carried around all these years, I can't help but get a thrill every time I toss, recycle, sell or give-away an item, whether it be a Janet Jackson cassette tape or a bag of unused make-up wedges. Seriously, it's like a workout - you sweat, lose weight (i.e. the pounds of crap you're discarding) and work up an appetite. Haul enough storage bins to the garage, and you'll even tone muscle.

But what is it about getting rid of the old to make room for the new that's so satisfying and, well, liberating? It's almost as if I can breathe better without so much stuff lassoed to my being. I suppose it's all a part of letting go - the process isn't easy, but you're guaranteed to feel better afterward.

This gypsy heart of mine has always given me an advantage in forsaking old life chapters for new ones. I once had a roommate who saved everything she'd ever owned since childhood. She even kept her baby teeth in a jar. I'm not kidding for effect. This is the real deal. Some people just can't let go.

Then there was the old lady on my Meal on Wheels route in Santa Cruz. She lived in a house that was floor to ceiling full of trash, collectibles and memorabilia. You could barely move around, and I won't even get into the state of the fridge (or the smell of the house). It was truly tragic. Like Big Edie and Little Edie, there are those of us who'd rather see our gardens grey than give a go at a new surrounding.

If only we could all see places and objects as ephemeral - here today, gone tomorrow - then everyone could get the same thrill I'm having at selling my DVD/VHS player on Craigslist. I am not my DVD player; my DVD player is not me. That said, there's no way in hell I'm giving up my iPod.