« C'mon shake your body baby do that conga, know you can't control yourself any longer | Main | Gratuitous Cat Picture Wednesday »

May 6, 2011

Friday Q&A & Cat


At ease, everyone.

A few recent reader questions:

• On the subject of decluttering, reader Connie asked, "I'm puzzled because no one has mentioned selling/yard or garage sales. Does no one do that any more?"

Hi Connie! I love yard sales. It's what I think of as Southern Recycling. I used to have yard sales from time to time when I lived in that little house in Encino-adjacent and had a yard. There are a lot of similarities between this re-adjustment and that one, like moving from a larger space to a much smaller space. But there's one big difference -- no yard! There's just no logical or appropriate place for something like that out here. And it's fine, I like the slower pace of filling up a bag or a box and putting it aside for charity. But I'm pretty sure there are still plenty of folks out there saling the yard!

- - -

• Reader Margot wrote: "I was mystified about why you were keeping either of the fondue pots or the saws. Going from 2 of each to 1 of each still seems like a giant waste of space and energy toward managing STUFF since you don't need either."

Good morning, Margot! The simplest answer I can give you is this: my goal is not to live a spartan, austere life with no decoration.

I love that cool, 1960s atomic-age fondue pot. It's awesome. It makes me laugh when I think about it and it looks fantastic displayed in my home.

The purpose of decluttering in my life is to fit better into my much smaller home, have less overall stuff to move next time and fewer piles of stuff to clean. For me, that means letting go of things that don't make me happy and letting go of things I can easily borrow elsewhere or do without to make room for the things I love.

There were a few commenters who mentioned they were able to get their entire collection of worldly possessions into two suitcases. Two suitcases! I found that astonishing, and while I was intrigued by it I know I am not someone who ever wants to carry my life in a suitcase or two. BEEN THERE. Maybe my childhood turned me into a person who wants to nest and have things, my poor shrink has her work cut out for her. All I know is that for me a two-suitcase life is not the goal. I enjoy all the worldly pleasures that God created, including decorative kitchenware.

The trick is to find a balance here in my home. My goal is no mystery piles, no stuffed closets, no duplicates, no huge unused items hulking in the corner (treadmill, I'm looking at you.) It's a far cry from austerity, but everyone works at their own pace.

- - -

Janice asked, "I wonder what your thoughts are on Kindles or ebooks? We share a great love for books... I'll never give up reading, but the thought of being able to store thousands of books on one device is very appealing. Then again, I don't know that I want to give up the paper version, or having a bookshelf full of my favorite books to display."

Janice, you and I are sharing a mind meld on this one! I love my paper books, too. This move showed me with a big blazing neon sign that I have to re-think my book strategy. I personally buy books as my way to support authors (my choice for obvious reasons.) But I can't move that many boxes of books again. So I'm still going to buy books (OK, if I ever become flush again, which I will, fingers crossed, and until then will read the massive pile of unread books from my own shelves) and when I finish a book I am going to do my very best to pass it along, either to my grandma or mom or the library.

And I'm going to embrace the eBook. I haven't figured out which reader to go with and it doesn't matter since I wouldn't be buying one right this second anyway. But I am getting on that train. This moving business is crazymaking, but if it helps prod me up the technology food chain I think it's not that bad.

- - -

• Reader Cathy in Wisconsin writes, "Just the paranoia coming out, but do you ever find it dangerous walking in the Hollywood hills? I would have a taser in one hand and a can of pepper spray in the other. This is coming from someone who lives in rural Wisconsin though!"

Hello Cathy! This question is timely as I am just about to hit "send" on this entry and lace up my shoes for a climb up into the hills.

I don't find it dangerous territory, the movie stars and labradoodles of the Hollywood Hills are fairly well-behaved. There is the occasional wild-eyed murder suspect running around but you know in advance because of the throng of helicopters hovering overhead.

The Hollywood Hills are spectacular, probably one of my favorite areas in the city. I love the houses barnacled to the hillsides, the strange architecture, winding dead-end roads and odd landscaping choices. I love the views! And the dubious human flotsam down at street level in Hollywood doesn't seem interested in making the trek uphill so it's surprisingly peaceful. When you come visit from Wisconsin be sure to spend a morning driving around the Hills.

Unless you see a throng of helicopters overhead.

- - -

Have a happy weekend filled with decorative fondue pots or similar!


Cat pants crack me UP.

Posted by laurie at May 6, 2011 8:27 AM