Friday, January 11, 2008

I Have Changed, Take Notice, Don't Get Me Little Things As Presents Anymore

Every time I move, I get rid of more stuff. Because I'm moving for the third time in two years, I am going to take a vow of minimalism (excluding books). The more stuff you accumulate, the more you have to move. I vow to have less stuff. Somehow I moved here with only 7 large 18 gallon Rubbermaid tubs of books and clothes, and have accumulated furniture and at least 3 more tubs of books. How this happened (cough indie used bookstores cough) I have no idea.

But books are at least defensible. What is all this crap I seem to be moving from place to place?! I'm moving from a mish-mashed two person grad student apartment into my own place with grown up looking couches (bought on Craigslist!) and granite countertops, so I'm trying to streamline. My Roommate was really into "country style," which I actually detest. I am not going to go Gropius on you (although I do Capitalize Like A German), but I am definitely going to stick with a more minimalist aesthetic and lifestyle.

I love my books, my nice (well, decent except for beautiful bundt pan) cookware, the pictures of the children and every technological gadget I have, but I vow to discard (and never buy again):

1. Knick knacks. Yes, you people who have known me since high school, I am not ever going to buy these things on purpose again. Forget that I once ever liked them when you knew me in high school or college (or law school, part I). Ever since I moved from Bourgie Metropolis Law School back to my parents' house for that year, I have vowed to never accumulate little things again. Especially snow globes. Tchotckes are hereby outlawed in favor of uncluttered space. Unless you have given me something you obtained from your travels. I see the world through my eyes and ears mostly, and through cool things people bring back to me. I like my Matreshka dolls, my Russian lacquer box, my sake set, and my Oaxacan candle holder. They're at least special. So if you give me something, I display it, but I am not going to buy a little enameled box or musical thing of my own volition ever again.

2. Decorative kitchenwear. Yes, you dinner party attendees, they're chucked too. I like my large serving dishes, but unless it has a function like holding food, decorative display dishes or other crockery = seriously inconvenient and aesthetically cluttered.

3. Scented things. This is a more recent realization that my "inexplicable" headaches and muscle-debilitating allergies are exacerbated by scent. Gone will be the scented candles, scented oil diffusers, and the like. This does not bode well for my large collection of perfumes. As in, I cannot imagine wearing my heavier Chanel perfumes, and hardly wear perfume at all anymore except when I'm feeling fancy. And then I wear only my favorite Narciso Rodriguez, which is still light and lovely and causes only pleasure, not pain. Female friends are welcome to poach the rest.

4. Candles. I used to be really into lighting them for dinner parties, and then I stopped having them for a while and got out of the habit of lighting candles, and then when I had dinner parties they seemed too fussy and formal. And for casual dinners there seemed to be no point, since my dining room was so cold that we spent all of 20 minutes outside eating before retreating to a warm part of the house (e.g. where there was a space heater). To have a candle or two at dinner would have felt like we were reenacting The Little Match Girl, and as each tiny point of light and warmth fluttered out with visions of grandeur (central heat! energy efficient windows! oh, glory!), we would have eventually died of cold on the living room floor. And in my next apartment, it'll just look cluttered with my new furniture and aesthetic, and he hates candles anyway. Unless you're Stevie Nicks, wear diaphanous broomstick skirts and for you thunder only happens when it's rainin', burning candles isn't really that inherently fun. So, no more candles, save one or two for my awesome Oaxacan candle holder. Alas, for the inner goth girl in me.

5. Ugly posters or memo boards. What am I thinking, that I'm still in college? Better to blow up and frame striking and beautiful photography from artists you know personally.


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