K.I.S.S. was one of those silly 1970’s catchphrases, like “Don’t let the turkeys get you down” that my mother embraced and still uses today because apparently time stopped in 1979 and all the advancements since then (you know, things like personal computers and fuel injection and laminate flooring) are probably From The Devil…anyway…K.I.S.S. stands for “Keep It Simple, Stupid” and this morning as I was going through my (From The Devil) computer stuff, all the email and lists and bookmarks, I deleted things. I love deleting things. It simplifies my life to not be looking at old craig’s list bookmarks and recipes I’ve tried that were nasty and emails out of date that are no longer relevent.
Terry never throws anything away. His dresser is cluttered with receipts for lightbulbs and old roll tickets from work and the spare screw from the hinges he put on the bathroom cabinet. His email box has 457 items in it, all read, most irrelevent, yet he cannot delete them because he “might need to reference them one day!” I have learned, after 24 years of marriage, to let him have his stuff. He has learned, after 24 years of marriage, that if he limits his stuff to the dresser top and his email box, I am less likely to go bonkers and simply gather everything up and throw it away. It has happened. It has been a source of serious conflict in the past. We’ve learned how to K.I.S.S. and deal with it.
I love to throw things away. I love to go through my closet, and take all the clothes not worn in the last year, the shoes, blankets, everything, and bag them up to give to Goodwill. I despise clutter, but with 4 of us in the house (for now) and 3 of us who feel more secure when surrounded by stuff, clutter happens. What I think is funny, is how I can box stuff up and get rid of it and no one noticed for 6 months, and by the time they do, I have completely forgotten that stuff even existed, let alone when it went away and where to. I figure if it takes them 6 months to notice then it probably wasn’t that important to begin with.
Now that we are actually planning on putting the house up for sale, and actually planning on finding (or possibly building) a place about half the size, we ALL have to get serious about paring down our stuff. Furniture needs to find a new home. There is a fair amount of redundancy furniture-wise, especially where desks are concerned. I have a massive dollhouse (sometimes bigger isn’t better) that I am certain a 7 yr old girl would be delighted with, and Lord knows it takes up alot of space. I am debating about the piano. I don’t play it regularly, and someone might want a piano that can’t afford a new one. It takes up a bit of room as well. Not to mention all the small things, the vases and doodads and shi…er…stuff. I am not sentimental. Most of it can go, especially if it doesn’t serve a legitimate purpose. K.I.S.S. means only keeping the things that are functional. If they don’t have some genuine value (like the 1928 set of encyclopedia that really are a stellar reference for school projects), they’re gonna hafta go.
The question is how do we reach a compromise on what’s valuable and what’s not? Because a compomise will definitely have to be reached. No doubt about that.