thoughts and things


It’s a funny thing, your belongings. Some are practical, and therefore are needed, whereas others are not really that useful at all. So why do we keep all this stuff?

My sister was going through some old CDs the other day, and sending them off to get some money. It reminded me of the time I threw away all my old music cassettes.

I remember it well. It was in 2006. I had a pile of belongings and I was routing through them all. I was essentially homeless and needed to reduce my belongings by about two thirds. I knew, at the time, as I poured plastic rectangular cases from a dusty silver box and into the black bin bag, that I would regret doing so. I don’t think I’d listened to any of the cassettes for years, seeing as my cd player at the time seemed to chew them up and spit them out like a crazy robot.

But it was the memories, the thoughts that were almost recorded into that brown tape. The people I had been with, where I had bought them, why I had bought them. The songs were ones which took me back to events, and people, and reminded me of my terrible taste in music as a ten year old (Wet, Wet, Wet? Shampoo?). I even had a few tapes which I’d recorded myself, carefully waiting by the radio to cut off the talking bits. Recordings of me and sisters radio shows too.

Could I have kept a few? I guess. But what was the point? I’d never listen to them again. As if to prove my point, I no longer even own a product that you could put a cassette into. These tapes, these memories would just sit around in a box, gathering dust, lying dormant.

I chucked lots of other stuff out that day, but I can’t really remember what it was. That stuff is lost to the abyss of time, and if any memories were worth keeping, they should be stored away in my head, not in a box. I regret throwing the tapes away, when I think back to that moment. But you know, I don’t think I really do in reality.

Same with these baby clothes and toys. Harbouring these things, coveting every item. I’ve already sold a few on eBay. Yes, I may keep a few, but do I need to keep everything? keeping things doesn’t mean you remember things any better. I remember reading something (possibly Alex Garland’s The Beach) where it said the person doesn’t take photos as it distorts the memory. I kind of like that idea, which is ironic really being a blogger.

You know I really need to have a clear out sometime soon, cupboards, and boxes, and minds.

3 thoughts on “Remembering”

  • Great post! I have a cupboard that I have cleaned out many times, throwing away lots but also keeping lots. I cleaned it the other day and thought a lot of it I’ve kept in there every time I’ve cleaned but have not touched it again (until the next time I clean) so I threw it all away ­čÖé
    The only children’s things I’ve kept are achievements x

  • I always seem to be throwing things out. But I also hors so much stuff, just because they’re memories. The amount of things I’ve kept of Tia’s so I can show he when she’s older is crazy. Will she even care who gave us a card when she was born? Well I’ve kept them all anyway! X

  • I’ve been fighting being a hoarder for years, a trait I got from my Mum and Granny. I think we sometimes put emotions in to objects and then find it hard to remove the item because of the association with the emotion. I don’t want to go as far as minimalist living but I do now want to live in a house without clutter. I’m making progress, it is not quick but I can see that I’m making progress as my pile of things to remove from the house is getting bigger. I’m asking myself if I’ll still use the item or whether I want it on display, and if I’m not sure I’m trying to put them away for a few months to see if I’ve missed them.

    BTW, I think I still have a mix cassette tape somewhere because of the emotions attached to it. As I don’t have anything to play it on either I should get rid of it.

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