Not Quite the Perfect Number

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By Dave

Like many guys I suppose, I love a good message T-shirt. Whether it is showing my love of a particular TV show, a place I have travelled to, a college I attended (I went to several) or support for the high school where I work (and because the latter are often free, I am happy to take one), I rarely pass by a cool tee without checking for one in my size.

This led to my collection of 42 message T-shirts (If you are a fan of The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy, you probably are geeking out right now). I knew I had “a bunch,” but had no clue how many that was.

The problem was that all of them had a special memory connected to them. Perhaps they were not worth the $15-$20 or so I paid for each (sans the free ones, of course), but they were important to me at one time for one reason or another.

But I had to come to terms with the fact that they were not all important enough to keep, particularly since many of them were fading, chipping or pilling. I could keep the memory of the shirt without the actual shirt, so into the trash or Goodwill bag they went.

Shirt after shirt, memory after memory, was gently retired.

In the end, 20 shirts remained. Besides the fact I normally wear collared shirts to work, I realized a very important fact: I am an adult and probably should dress like one. While fun, I don’t need clothing of my past when they don’t reflect my future.

And the extra closet space is a nice, added bonus.

Time to Leave Neverland

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By Dave

Let me start by clarifying that minimalism is my wife’s thing.

That’s not to say she is wrong and I am “putting up” with some hare-brained scheme. What I mean is that she has caught the vision and I haven’t yet (and, to be honest, I’m not sure I want to).

Part of the difference between us is that a little bit of chaos kind of works much better with my spontaneous, up-for-an-adventure nature. I want to move on to the next thing and cleaning up my mess from the last fun thing slows me down. An excuse, perhaps, but one I have let drive my actions in the past.

While maintaining a house up to the standards of June Cleaver or Carol Brady was not a daily expectation in either one of our homes, at my house, we took things to the next level. I won’t get into specifics here, because it isn’t all my story to tell, but a little bit of “slothfulness” in this area wasn’t considered one of the Seven Deadly Sins in our home (perhaps in retrospect it should have been).

But when I walk by the junk room, where the furniture for my wife’s studio is trapped by so much clutter that it look like we’re trying to build a conservatory in a war zone, I am convicted it’s not healthy to avoid this problem forever.

So, whether I am ready to do so or not, I suppose it’s high time to leave the responsibility-free Neverland I have created for myself and get aboard the Minimalism Train as it leaves the station.

Hopefully in a year there will be enough change to make the effort worth it.