I was talking to my brother the other night and we were discussing the finer points of getting rid of stuff. After much discussion, partially fueled by liquid wheat, we decided that the solution to any problem can be solved with one of two options…burn it or bury it. Burn it…if you can’t burn it, bury it.
You might wonder why burn it is the first option…I think it is two-fold. First of all…hello…fire. Secondly, there is something cathartic about the finality of burning stuff. One can un-bury stuff and, depending on the item, may find it in the same condition as it was before the internment. But fire…that’s pretty much permanent. I always say the hardest part of starting a project is starting the project, so when I finally work up the nerve to begin, I jump in with both feet…I “get committed”. For home improvement, that usually involves smashing into a big wall or tearing out the flooring…something big that makes you mean it. Burning is like that I guess.
I got to thinking about stuff that I keep around the house. Stuff that I don’t even know I have…stuff that junks up corners and shelves and closets. It made me consider the therapy aspect of burning stuff too. We keep so much stuff that we don’t even know what we have. Stuff that might have some meaning or memory. Of course, when I look at those things, I often wonder what the memory was…and the really good memories, well, I have them regardless of the object…so burn it…if you can’t burn it, bury it!
It was a lot of fun to talk with my brother about pyromania a little bit the other night and it brought back other old memories…every couple of years, we would get a new couch or chair…hand-me-downs usually. It was a ceremonial thing, but when we got the new piece, we would haul the old furniture out into the driveway and set it ablaze. If we had an old tire, we’d throw it on top too, just for good measure. Ahhh…the sweet memories and sooty faces….sweet times indeed. Now those are the memories that are strong in my mind (or what is left of it after inhaling all of the tire-smoke)…the memories that don’t need any special prompting…only a conversation with my brother.