One of the great burdens to carry through life is sentimentality.
I have always been the sentimental type, who could never throw something out because it had some significance to my life.
I was the type of kid who would hold on to a cinema ticket because I enjoyed the film, or who would bring a pebble back from my favourite beach.
Over the years, all this sentimental crap has collected and I have boxes of the stuff lying around.
Recently, I made a decision. All that shite must go. It is filling up the place and collecting dust and I keep tripping over boxes of what is essentially rubbish.
I got a skip and made a wee rule: if it ain’t decorative or functional it goes in the skip. Needless to say, the skip was full to overflowing by the time they collected it. But it hasn’t stopped there. Every bin day, if there is a spare corner in the rubbish bin, I manage to fill it with more crap.
All this is very hard on the sentimental side, as I am chucking stuff that goes back to my childhood. But who the hell is interested in it, apart from me? I have just binned all my music books that go back fifty years. They were full of teachers’ notes and little memories that frankly I would rather forget anyway. So that is another little corner of the spare room that is now clear, and another box gone that I needn’t trip over again.
I am being absolutely ruthless, and following my rule to the strictest interpretation. Those music books were not decorative, and it is very unlikely that I am going to start learning the piano from scratch again, so they weren’t functional.
So far I have only made one exception to my rule.
There is one item that fails to meet either criteria, yet I am holding on to it.
It is expensive to maintain and takes up a lot of space, yet I cannot bring myself to chuck it in the bin.
Well…. We have been married for over thirty four years.
I’m a sentimental old fool really.