Stuff.

Warning: This post contains contemplations of a highly whimsical nature.

So I’m right in the midst of moving flat now.Today we hauled our most precious items (my wife’s jewelry and immigration documents and my computer – always good to know where one’s priorities lie) to our new abode and tomorrow we face the tiring wrath of the full furniture removal adventure. Top it off with the fact that Scotland is currently being hit with the heat wave of the century (24C/75F, people were collapsing from sunstroke in the streets today) and the next 24 hours don’t appeal to me very much. In fact, I might just crawl into a ball right now and die.

Still, moving is an odd experience as you eventually end up faced with your entire life laid before you in a series of cardboard boxes. The first thought that sprung to my mind was simply “damn, I’ve got a lot of stuff”. Even though I threw out a large amount of stuff when we last moved a mere eight months ago, I still somehow manage to have an absolute abundance of things, most of them I’d completely forgotten about until I saw today. My wife is no better which is strange as you’d think a woman who emigrated from her native country only a few years ago simply wouldn’t have been able to acquire the sheer amount of stuff she now has in such a short period of time. But like a woman with a goal, she’s succeeded and we’re now going to make some removal men very unhappy and a storage company very wealthy.

Most of stuff is my exceptionally geeky too. I have 19 boxes of comics which I’ve collected over the past 15 years, tons of DVDs, games and books and an absolute vast amount of trading cards from when I was a teenager. I’ve actually had to throw a lot of these our over the past few days and it just fills my heart with nostalgia then shatters it without remorse it like Charleen, the high school prom queen who never let you get to second base.

All of this is why I’m becoming more and more a fan of virtual items. I like MP3s, I like digital photos, I like online gaming… I like it all because when I move home I don’t need to rip new biceps in my arms with an insane amount of heavy lifting (physical exertion is my natural predator). In fact, I want more things to go virtual. I want to start downloading all of my films in glorious HD, I want to play online TCGs, I want my comics to be awesome digital things that get delivered straight into my e-reader’s cyber-brain, I want virtual pets instead of real ones, I want to be able to pack my entire life into a single laptop and a 1TB portable hard drive. A depressing thought, I know, but at least it would save on a lot of heavy lifting.

Stuff. I’ve got a crap load of it. Do you?

-Gordon

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21 Comments

  1. Rhii says:

    75F? Oh to live in Scotland where 75F is a heat wave!

    I grew up in Maine (very northeast tip) and we would consider 75 unpleasantly warm and people who had air conditioners would turn them on… but most people didn’t have them. If it got to 80F everyone took off as much clothing as possible and lay flat until it was over.

    Now I live in Missouri where 75 is the temperature I set my AC on if I’m weak. During the day outside it’s mostly over 90F and I try (try try try) not to set the AC lower than 78 because my electric bill goes bonkers. And when I get in the car that’s sat in the sun all day… by the time I drive somewhere I’m literally sick and have to go lie down with icepacks on my head.

    I want your heat wave. :(

  2. Russ says:

    1. 75F sounds awesome. In fact, it cooled down to a high of 75F today, and I live in Pennsylvania! Then again, considering that you live somewhere around 20 degrees latitude to the north of me, I suppose that puts it all in perspective :)

    2. Yes, I have a huge crapload of stuff. I’m still at the tail end of moving all of that stuff to my new place. Books are MY major source of bicep/back soreness. It is interesting how you’re faced with your whole life when you move, as you said. It can take you to a ton of different places and memories.

    I can totally understand why you would want to have as much of your stuff available digitally as possible. It’s interesting to think about how you could put a value on it though (like, you can’t really resell your digital comic, book, or music collection, including “rare” ones… or could you? Hmm…).

    Good luck with the move!

    • Gordon says:

      Thanks!

      Move wasn’t too bad today actually. I made the sensible decision of hiring a removal company this time round (when we moved in my brother helped and we hired a van and did it all ourselves) and boy oh boy was it worth every penny :) Don’t underestimate the might of Polish muscle men! :D

  3. Rosehip says:

    The issue with Scotlands heat is the humidity can be as high as 80% making the little heat we get very uncomfortable…

    We just sold 400+ dvd’s to some online company for a few hundred pounds. Half of them were unopened. I am slowly but surely trying to reduce our ’stuff’ but its hard going.

  4. Ouch, I can sympathize. I’ve moved residences 6 times in the last 5 years, and each time I pack up and throw away my junk I tell myself I’m not going to accumulate so much next time…it never works. Oh, I also ALWAYS underestimate how many boxes I’ll need. I’d take a look at my closet and be like, 2 suitcases should do. Then of course, I would end up uncovering another drawer full of shirts or a box full of shoes or something.

    When it comes to thoughts of a whimsical nature…sometimes, I wish I had a ray gun I can shoot at any item I want to move, and it would just condense the mass into a manageable size so I can “unpack” it later at my new location. Queen sized mattress? No problem! ZAP! Now the size of a brief case! Even if its mass is preserved in this condensed state and it still takes muscle to move, at least it’ll fit through a doorway or into the trunk of a car with ease!

    • Gordon says:

      6 times in the last 5 years? Ouch! I’ve moved a ton since I left home although the best run I had was 5 years in one apartment. Aside from that it’s been about 6 months – 1 year per property. It’s just not enough :( The rental market here is really crap because everything is privately owned and as soon as the owners decide to sell, you get kicked out.

  5. Wonderwyrm says:

    75 is a heat wave?

    Try a heat index of 110F in florida!

    You pasty bastards wouldnt last!!

  6. Magson says:

    75 is a heat wave? Reminds me of my summer in Alamosa, Colorado in 1994. We got up to 80F (with no humidity) for 3 days in a row and you should have heard the moaning about how hot it was. Somehow my roommate even managed to get heatstroke.

    For a Chicago boy used to summer in the mid-90’s with maximum humidity, I thought it was simply some gloriously nice summer days. By Sept 1 we were already below freezing at night. Cold place, that.

  7. Jason says:

    Yeah, you aren’t going to get much sympathy for that heat. 90F+ and 60%+ humidity in Atlanta, it’s like a hot swamp. And mosquitoes! Yay!

    On the moving bit… I too am working on becoming more “stuffless”. Luckily, the USA has a long standing tradition of yard sales where you can pawn off your stuff onto other people who haven’t yet realized they have too much stuff.

    • Gordon says:

      Hehe, here I manage to keep all of the second hand shops in business :) One day I’m going to get my entire comic collection on a digital format, I swear. I just can’t deal with so many boxes any more…

  8. Snafzg says:

    Hah, I just had to comment on the temperature thing.

    Where I live in Canada, we can drop as low as -40°C in the winter and hit as high as 35°C in the summer (though most often summer is upper 20s to low 30s and winter is minus 30s)!

    As for “stuff,” yeah it can get quite insane! I wouldn’t call us packrats by any means but we could probably toss/sell/giveaway 25% of the content of our house because we simply don’t use it anymore or are holding on “just in case.”

    The worst is that I’ve done a lot of our home renos myself so a lot of space is taken up by tools, parts, building materials, etc. I just recycled 10 half empty paint cans the other day because we don’t even have those colours in our home anymore! :P

    • Gordon says:

      I heard Canada is really crazy in the winter. How do you guys survive in -30C?!? The UK is very mild and never gets too cold or too hot. It can be frustrating at times but I suppose it does make our lives easy. The only problem in Scotland is that the weather is incredibly unpredicatable. We might get one very sunny, hot (20C+) day in the summer but then literally the next day will be cold (12C) and very wet. It’s bizarre.

  9. We’ve been having a heatwave here in Tennessee. It’s been approaching 100F here for a couple of weeks, and that’s unheard of this time of year. I demand to know who decided that this is a temperate zone.

    As for the moving, I feel you. I had to toss out a lot of M:TG and WWE Raw Deal cards when I helped my parents move from their old house a couple of months back. I kept some, but I just don’t have room anymore. The boxes and boxes of comics, too, and old video game cartridges were absurd. Not to mention the Star Wars action figures and memorabilia from my childhood. Just the amount was absurd. When I moved home from college, my books and DVDs gave me the same feeling of “ugh, too much stuff!” I now appreciate digital goods far more. I’m more likely to download PC games than buy a box, I love my Kindle and wish I could get everything in an electronic format. I don’t think that’s bizarre. I think it’s appreciating advances in luxury technology.

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