Eularee Smith
Writer & Educator

Favorite Links
Eularee's bookshelf: read

Snow in AugustWatchersRising SunThe Andromeda StrainThe ShiningThe Hunt for Red October

More of Eularee's books »

Book recommendations, book reviews, quotes, book clubs, book trivia, book lists
Mad Mimi Email Marketing

Cleaning House

What is all this talk about Spring Cleaning? Even retailers market to the event, ranking up there with Easter and the Spring Soltice. But why? 

The task of organizing and cleaning out typically falls to women. Somehow our nesting instinct makes us want to get rid of stuff! Is it all the new from Christmas, New Year resolutions or Spring blooms that make the old seem shabby and drab? Or is it just the fact that we have too much stuff. 

Not hoarders by design, so many of us just don't have time to continually purge our living quarters. Once all the Christmas stuff descends from the attic, or comes out of the closet, or up from the basement, a certain reality sets in. The realization that we hold on to stuff for no particular reason other than we may need it someday, we don't have time or even procrastinating about Spring cleaning stirs the need to rid ourselves of too much stuff.

George Carlin had a great comedy bit about "too much stuff". His theory was that our houses are a place to store our piles of stuff with a cover on it. We lock our houses because we don't want anybody to steal our stuff. We move to a bigger house when we get too much stuff or we put our stuff in storage. A whole industry was built around the fact that we have too much stuff.

Women get this concept of too much stuff, because it often falls to us to clean all that stuff. Once a year, we cry uncle and start getting rid of stuff. I would love to see the numbers on local charities that receive boxes of our stuff from January through Spring cleaning.

My opinion of why we purge ourselves of stuff this time of year, is because it feels good. It's that simple. I have yet to hear anyone say, I cleaned out the garage of all this stuff and now I feel awful. Quite the opposite occurs. I cleaned the pantry, Christmas decorations (I also cataloged and photographed each box ala my Mom's method) and the tool box. I feel great! I found stuff I didn't know or remembered I had and then promptly threw it out because I haven't used it in decades. What are the chances I will need it now? I threw out broken stuff, outdated stuff, pink stuff, blue stuff, all kinds of stuff. And the more stuff I tossed out, the better I felt. It was as if the weight of all that stuff was slowing me down.

Carlin does say that we get rid of stuff, feel great and then start to yearn for more stuff to fill the empty space of the old stuff. I am hoping this is not the case and that as I get older, I will continue to purge myself of stuff. I would hate to think that all my stuff, will one day be stuff for my children to move, store, or make new piles in their house, of more stuff.   


PrintView Printer Friendly Version

EmailEmail Article to Friend

Reader Comments

There are no comments for this journal entry. To create a new comment, use the form below.

PostPost a New Comment

Enter your information below to add a new comment.

My response is on my own website »
Author Email (optional):
Author URL (optional):
Some HTML allowed: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <code> <em> <i> <strike> <strong>
« Happy Birthday,Dad! | Main | Not My Cat »