My wife & I celebrated quietly our 32nd year of marriage in our modest apartment in Pyeongnae, South Korea. We purposefully celebrated without guests or family members. After eating our celebration supper we watched a movie titled, “It Could Happen to You” on our Samsung TV. The 1994 movie is a romantic comedy based partially on a true story starring Nicolas Cage & Bridget Fonda. They are caught-up in a whirl-wind of choices and dilemmas wrought by winning the New York State lottery. Like most things in life, good fortune can be both a blessing and a curse. Fame and riches are two items that easily come to mind in challenging an individual’s integrity. After the movie we ate some potato chips, and my wife of 32-years cautioned me to be careful and keep the potato chip crumbs off the bed. “Yes dear,” I dutifully replied.
As I said previously in my blog, I have concluded without any scientific study or statistical analysis that us humans possess an innate propensity to fill-up our space, whether we live in a small apartment, a six or seven room abode, or a mansion of many rooms with lots of space. It’s a rare person indeed who can manage their home and keep from cluttering it up with their stuff. For a store owner it is difficult for him/her not to clutter-up the window display so extensively that one can’t see the displayed items for the clutter. One doesn’t really see anything as the clutter overwhelms the senses. Even when we go to workshops to learn how not to clutter-up our lives, or our spaces, we can only last so long before relapsing. Then, the inevitable day of moving happens, or the fall cleaning day beckons us to clean-up our junk, and what do we inevitably say: “I didn’t know I had so much junk; where did it all come from?” All I can say, “It’s amazing!”
Well, it happened to me again. One day after our 32nd wedding anniversary (9-17-2009), I looked at our apartment, and I said to myself, “Self, you’ve got to rearrange our stuff, meaning my wife’s & mine, in our itsy bitsy apartment because it’s getting smaller by the day, and there has to be a way to make more room by rearranging our things differently. As everyone knows, you can’t make a silk purse out of a sow’s year, but I never let the impossible keep me from trying. Instead of having all 90-degree angles in out apartment walls, we have one wall that slants at bout a 60-degree angle, resulting in one opposite wall being several feet shorter than the other one. That unique construction causes a major problem in one’s options, but one doesn’t need a lot of options to do a whole bunch of moving stuff here and there. After a while I found myself trapped by all the stuff I already moved; there it was, right in the way of the one move that showed some promise. That’s when I blurted out to my wife of 32-years that, “We’ve got too much darn stuff for our little bitty apartment, and some of her stuff had to go.” I knew better, but it came out before I thought about the repercussions. Yes, I’m still alive, and I’ve decided to live with the status quo for now, but I haven’t given up on reducing the physical and mental clutter in my life before this old soldier slowly fades away.