I’m A Hoarder And I’m NOT Ashamed Of It

DANDY VON NÜTZEN , Grey Gardens documentary inspired photography

DANDY VON NÜTZEN , Grey Gardens documentary inspired photography

I am unofficially the world’s biggest Hoarder of Useless Things.

And the only reason why this hasn’t gone official yet is because I didn’t get to create the committee of Hoarders of Useless Things, where I shall preside in glory until I die surrounded by all the trash I gathered.

I am currently hoarding satin bows, cat collars, smushed wrapping paper, empty plastic cases of bubblegum, thread, broken jewelry, coins, used batteries, envelopes, bottle lids, Christmas cards, meds, carton boxes, colorful rocks, hundreds of cut-ups from glossy magazines, socks, old nail polish, sticky notes, crayons, useless cables, huge shopping bags, and M&Ms I spilled in a drawer and they make this cute little sound rolling around when I open and close it.

As you can see, I’m no Monica Geller. I’m a mess-hoarder. Open one random drawer and you can find all of the above and then some. I, myself, have lost track of all the things I’m hoarding. Which gives me the wonderful opportunity of stumbling upon some tiny treasure I’d completely forgotten about.

The people I’ve lived with, however, have NOT appreciated these little discoveries. My former flat mate, God bless her, kept stumbling upon these wonders long after I moved out. A box full of Happy Meal toys. An IKEA wooden bed in its original box. Poker cards. A bag of old, moldy figs. A magazine filled with photos of naked women I honestly don’t even remember about. This last one kind of creeped her out.

I’m sure I had a good reason even for hoarding naked ladies. I just don’t remember it. And it doesn’t even matter anymore. What matters is the thought that goes through my head every time I open a drawer and shove something “worth hoarding” inside.

It goes like this:

“When I grow up, I’m going to write beautiful hand-written notes to everyone I love and I will tie every envelope with a beautiful satin bow”

Reality has it that my writing looks like it’s done with my feet. While I’m sleeping. Trembling like a dog dreaming about burying bones. Also, I have never EVER been able to tie a bow in my life. Especially satin bows, those slippery little bastards.

But the image of me sitting at my neat and tidy desk, dressed in a beautiful white kimono with red and pink flowers, writing calligraphic letters to my loved ones, while my bare feet feel the rough texture of the wooden floor… now that’s the kind of daydream that makes me blush with joy.

Of course, my desk is anything but neat and tidy, I have never owned a kimono in my life, and I wear wooly socks even in August. I know this is just another-life-I’ll-never-live, in the form of a mental postcard.

But when I open the drawer and I see the envelopes and the lovely satin bows sitting there, patiently waiting for me to turn into that perfect postcard, the image becomes more vivid. Closer. Tangible. Like I might actually belong there. Like I might actually be that person-that-I’ll-never-be and live that life-that-I’ll-never-live.

Because otherwise, as Jonathan Safran Foer said, “sometimes I can hear my bones straining under the weight of all the lives I’m not living.” I hoarded all these lives in my head just like I’ve hoarded Useless Things in my drawers. It’s just as messy up there.

The Bohemian-Artist-That-Paints-Walls meets the Goth-Chick-That-Makes-Her-Own-Jewelry. Then the Interior-Decorator-That-Loves-Pastels competes with the Crazy-Cat-Photographer-That-Collects-Cat-Costumes and when you think it can’t get weirder, the Seriously-Fucked-Up-Kindergarten-Teacher wants to put up a gore puppet show using old socks.

It gets pretty crowded in there sometimes, so I feel the need to clean up the place. The only way to evacuate all these funky characters

  • From time to time, I clean up and I mercilessly throw out everything I piled up around the house. No sadness, or regret, I’m ready to give up on every single persona that I failed to adopt.
  • But that’s only because I know I now have SO MUCH ROOM for a brand new collection. That is so exciting! Think of all the people you could be, even though you’re never going to.

Valentina Volcinschi is a full-time copywriter and a passionate full-hearted writer. She’d love to be Zen, but she’s totally Buzz. She calms herself down with a good dose of post-rock beats, a bucketful of ice cream, and the possibility of a whimsical parallel universe.