28 Sept 2022

Spring-cleaning and Covid Circles!

Gerry Moran Kilkenny

So, spring is in the air and guess what I’ve been up to? Spring-cleaning, of course... Picture: RODNAE Productions/Pexels

So, spring is in the air and guess what I’ve been up to? Spring-cleaning, of course.
Truth be told I’ve been spring-cleaning since Lockdown. Sure what else is there to do, apart from a walk down town or out of town - within your 5km limit, of course.
You can also drive around town - in circles (within your 5km limit. Of course). You’ve no doubt heard of crop circles, well I call this driving around town and the suburbs: Covid Circles. There’s nothing mysterious or ‘paranormal’ about Covid Circles but they’re great fun!
And bring some smelling salts with you in case you get dizzy. Bring a flask of tea, or coffee, with you also and a few Marietta biscuits in case you want to park up and see what the folks in the next estate are up to – driving around in Covid Circles also perhaps or spring-cleaning.
Which brings me back to where I started before I start going around in circles in this column!
So, I’ve been spring-cleaning. Actually I haven’t been. I thought I was; I was very much under the impression that I was but apparently I wasn’t. According to my good missus (who is infallible on such matters) I have been rearranging, not cleaning. Seems there’s a difference.
So, there you have it, I’ve been spring-rearranging as opposed to spring-cleaning.
And to be honest I think my wife is right. I concede that moving stuff from one press to another, from one corner of a room to another, or from one room to another is not actually cleaning; I accept that this is not cleaning up, tossing out and getting rid of stuff.
And the reason I’m not really spring-cleaning is that I am unable to. Simple as that. I am unwilling to let go of things, unlike a gentleman, a psychologist as it happens, who I read about in the Irish Times last month who got rid of - wait for this - 95% of his possessions; his precious possessions: photographs, books, clothes, shoes, entertainment equipment, sports gear, gifts, cards, CDs etc.
This gentleman took advantage of moving house to make a clean sweep of ‘stuff’ that he had accumulated over a lifetime (he’s 48 by the way).
Well good for you fella is all I’ll say. Me, I’m getting rid of nothing. Nothing, you hear (and I hope the wife didn’t hear that as she’s holding out hope that one day I’ll see the light and donate all my clutter to charity). She’ll be waiting.
A brief aside here: Back in the seventies I brought a batch of fashionable, floral shirts home from Carnaby Street in London where I was working for the summer (I felt flushed, having just secured a permanent, pensionable job in Kilkenny). I kept those shirts for years, even when they’d long gone out of fashion until, under a certain amount of duress from a certain lady (the infallible one) I threw them out.
And now what do I see in the windows of the Monster House and Frank Wall’s? Beautiful floral shirts that any self-respecting ex-hippy would be proud to wear. Floral shirts exactly like the ones I threw out! And the moral of the story? Throw nothing - and I mean nothing - out.
And so, I’m a hoarder. So what? I could be a lot worse. I could be a serial killer for God’s sake. I also wish to state the following: there is nothing wrong with being a hoarder. Nothing. And I am sick to death of these TV shows hounding hoarders and hauling in family and psychologists to coerce them into shedding their clutter (ie their precious ‘stuff’, accumulated over years) and telling them they’ll be happier without it.
Well, I for one, am happy with my lot. Happy with my haphazard, higgledy-piggeldy, eclectic ‘clutter’. I am sick of people shedding, shredding, decluttering, downsizing, minimising. Sick of it.
Finally, a call to arms: Hoarders of the world unite. Tiocfaidh ár lá. Our day will come when, mark my words, children, grandchildren great-grandchildren even will come rummaging in our ‘clutter’ looking for some interesting, and possibly valuable, antique or work of art! And they may well find it
PS - On my regular Covid Circle walk around town I always look in the Book Centre window. One window, as befits this time of year, hosts a comprehensive display of self-improvement books (none on decluttering, thank God). As I scanned the titles I rearranged (my forte, it seems) four of them and came up with the following: ‘5 Minute Therapy’. ‘Think Like a Monk’. ‘Naked’. ‘Untamed’.
Sounds good to me!

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