decluttering

I hate what seems to be a national obsession with a concept referred to as “decluttering”. What an awkward neologism for tidying! It’s not like this mindset is designed to bring people to a Zen state of few possessions and a withdrawal from worldly concerns. I think it’s only a variant of consumerism which dictates a planned obsolescence cycle whereby you continually get rid of things and acquire new and younger trophy things. Anyway, there’s nothing wrong with keeping things, even if the house gets a little messy. Most people know the difference between keeping sentimental things (like jigsaw puzzles and board games that the family once enjoyed and dresses that the wearer nostalgically remembers looking good in), and living among towers of old newspapers or barrels of empty cat food cans. In the days before abundance, people kept things and things had value and meaning. Now we often have too much, but that doesn’t mean most of it has to be thrown away even if it’s useful or meaningful. What a bunch of conformists these declutterers are!

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