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The Rules of Acquisition

Posted on Monday, November 28th, 2016

Dave!Unless I am very unlucky, my life is more than half over.

This realization doesn't come cloaked in sadness or despair. Nor does it fill me with depression or fear. If I were to be completely honest, the fact that it's all going to end some day is more... comforting?... than anything else. More and more I am just "done" with life in general, and am ready to move on to whatever is next.

Even if that ends up being nothing.

Not that you need to put me on suicide watch, mind you. I've got cats depending on me and all that. It's just that there's a certain peace that comes from making peace with your life.

And eventual death.

If pressed, I could probably come up with all kinds of regrets, but I've worked very hard not to live with regrets so I can make the best of what is. Because that's all you can really do, isn't it?

Except...

After having moved house earlier this year, I can honestly say that I seriously regret all the senseless crap I seem to have accumulated over the years. Well, senseless now, but it undoubtedly meant a great deal to me at the time I acquired it. Like my massive comic book collection. Sure it's fun to look back through them from time to time, but right now I'd just like to find somebody with a stack of cash to make me an offer and haul it all away. One less thing to worry about. One less thing to burden whomever is going to be stuck disposing of my possessions when I shuffle this mortal coil.

It doesn't end with comic books. I've got a staggering load of DVDs, CDs, albums, books, gadgets, travel souvenirs, and other garbage piled up in my bedroom, office, closets, and garage. And for every box I get rid of, there are dozens upon dozens more to work through.

So... note to Younger Self...

Don't be so obsessed with acquiring crap.

It's just going to hold you down and be a pain in the ass to your Future Self.

And none of it is as important or necessary as you think it is.

None of it.

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Comments

  1. Nicole says:

    I know exactly how you feel. I don’t have as many possessions as a lot of people but I still feel overwhelmed by them. I think as you get older things take a backseat to experiences. I don’t even look at sale ads anymore unless it’s for food. Nothing gets me excited like when I was younger. Ironically now is when I can afford things but I no longer want them.

  2. Bo says:

    I’m almost ashamed to suggest this, but the book The Life-Changing Art of Tidying Up offers a very helpful way of looking at and dealing with the clutter and stuff in your house. I know that’s not exactly what you’re talking about here, but I thought I’d recommend it, just in case.

  3. Michelle says:

    This is so my mindset right now. It’s funny when your young you want to survive anything. Nuclear bomb… at 17 I would have wanted to survive it at any cost. Now though, I would rather be at ground zero and not have to go through all that. Not suicidal, just understanding that there are worse things then death. Death is just a natural process. And who knows maybe there is something grand beyond. If not just eternal peace doesn’t sound so bad.

    And I have so much stuff. Hundreds of books. Just to much stuff and I’m unsure how to get rid of some of it.

    I’m so happy you’re back to blogging. I missed you while on sabbatical.

  4. Marc Zimmermann says:

    Having turned 50 this year, a dad having died at the age of 55 and with a 54-year-old friend currently in intensive care with liver cirrhosis, I’m also inevitably thinking more about passing some day and all this stuff that means something to me but will ultimately end up in a landfill. Or, hopefully, with some of the more collectible stuff (LEGO Statue of Liberty, Simpsons buildings, rare CASIO and Swatch watches) and handmade bits of art, someone from Médecins Sans Frontières (my wife and mine ultimate heir) will spend some time to sell them on the proper channels in order to maximize the financial legacy.

    I don’t part with much of my stuff these days after having had the opportunity to leave behind much of that 6 years ago when buying and moving into a new home and not having accumulated lots of new stuff since then due to contemplating purchases more than I did earlier in my life.

    In the past years I’ve instead started spending larger amounts on vacation and travel experiences, offering worthwhile and invaluable memories and relaxation.

    I’m more sad about not likely to be able to spend several more decades with my closest and dearest companion, my wife, while both being both mentally and physically capable to enjoy life rather than passing. I’m loathing the fact that only few of us are lucky enough to pass away with minimal pain and suffering. I don’t really fear death itself, but rather the downhill path likely to await us.

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