Every shelf emptied eventually gets filled. It’s been a weird ebb and flow seeing empty shelves when I sit down to write one evening, then seeing full shelves the next evening, but I suppose for large-scale packing projects of recovering hoarders, adjusting to life without so much clutter everywhere, natural tendencies easily return, and yet, over the course of these past few months I’ve made significant, prolific changes. The shelf is half-full or half-empty, perhaps…
Each motherboard is a different puzzle to both assess for resale value and dismantle for scrap value. Sometimes you’d get the old school ones where the soldered-on batteries and huge heat sinks would be a pain to snap off. Other times you’d develop a rhythm after scraping your hundredth slightly-outdated board. What surprised me about the recycling company most was how infrequently we’d consider selling them online. Waiting for $20 versus getting a quick X-cents/pound, perhaps?
Unearthing this object was terrifying for me. Contained on this piece of cardboard are memories that are not positive, dispersed throughout my first two years without alcohol. I was still coping with the world as it is, a merciless, unpolite place that will consume you if you’re not careful. I’ve donned a bit of a jester attitude toward life perhaps in response to that. Nothing else is as serious as your daily pursuit of meaning.
I’ve held onto some memories for too long. The good ones, of course, I want to hold onto forever. The bad ones, though? The ones that just bring me down have limited uses: sometimes, remembering these events can be useful as metrics for where I’ve been, what I don’t want to repeat, and advisory lessons. Otherwise, all too often, the emotions of those memories weigh me down more than help me out. Just shred ’em!
Filling my car with scrap metal for a recycling run brought back memories working for an e-recycling warehouse, especially after writing at length about my thrift store misadventures. Both had daily and weekly weigh-in goals for keeping production moving. Unfortunately, that company – now gone or restructured – wasn’t earning any money, so we only occasionally met those wild goals. Still, it was a fun experience to remember on occasion. Let’s take a behind-the-scenes look into e-recycling.
Antiquatedness and needless wordiness prevent File… Don’t Pile! from being a fantastic paperwork filing system. The book is best approached as a casual guide to skim through when you need some organizing inspiration, rather than anything that could significantly help you improve messy paperwork piles. Computer technology from just after this book’s 1986 publication has rendered sections of solutions woefully so-so. Still, there is more substance here than not, so let’s clip out some useful suggestions.
If I’m honest with myself, my interest in rowing has tapered off over the past few weeks [as of this publishing]. I used to row twice daily, now if I row a few times a week, it’ll be a welcome change. I’ve let the discipline of exercising slip. Sometimes, it’s understandable, where if I’ve moved boxed all day, that’s one thing, but on days where I’m just writing? Let’s not use excuses about why not.
When I started the move-out process, I owned 171 CDs that I’d never heard before; today, 59. That 171 didn’t include 30+ I hadn’t cataloged, so let’s just say over 200. That’s obviously wasteful. I’d say I’m not passionate about listening to more than half of those 59 CDs. That said, I’m keeping them because will still listen to them all for two reasons: ownership obligation and training myself to stop buying things without using them. In other words: materialistic discipline.
Over the years, I’ve written thousands of intricate to-do lists. Throughout this moving process, I’ve found hundreds of them. Most are done. The remainder were impossible to do in one day, so they remained incomplete. Unless you’re keeping them organized for a comprehensive list of what you’ve been accomplishing daily, trash, recycle, or archive them! I think that we should instead prioritize tasks based on how relevant they are today, rather than they were yesterday.
Overcoming the allure of insobrieties, in many ways, taught me the discipline I needed to start pursuing what I love doing. When you’re stuck in misery, the natural inclination is to let that beast take its way with your emotions or physicality. However, when you look at that challenge to work even though you’re exhausted the same way you look at not drinking, it’s easy to just say: Alright, let’s suck it up and go!