I think I remember reading an article about how Larry and Bono of U2 couldn’t share hotel rooms back in the day. Larry liked things neat and tidy while Bono’s suitcases “exploded on impact” (I can’t recall which of the two said that). That’s how it is with me and roommates. The inspiration for this entry came just now when I was putting laundry away and kicked an empty box on the bedroom floor. I was trying to be quiet and not wake the neighbor below me. I had to grab the dresser so I wouldn’t fall, and became acutely aware once again of my most frustrating habit.
Although I’m not much of a TV person, two shows I like to watch are “Biggest Loser” and “Hoarders”. “Biggest Loser” gives me good ideas for eating right and exercising, and motivates me not to regain the weight I’ve lost. “Hoarders”, a much more disgusting and disturbing show, gives me comfort to know there are people in this world who are far more disorganized and messy than I am. It also serves to keep my own hoarding tendencies under control.
Moments ago, as I sat down to write about my frustration with tripping over the box, I was unable to find my Blog Book. The Blog Book is a notebook where I hand write first drafts before posting things online. This was even more frustrating than the encounter with the box because I just had the darn thing a few hours ago! Eventually I found it, under the coffee table, beside the new camera I bought two weeks ago (which is in its box).
The new camera contains a lot of “before” photos of my apartment, taken in anticipation of the great “purge and clean”. So does my old camera. Neither camera contains “after” photos, because when a “purge and clean” episode comes on, it tends to only last an hour or so and is limited to one area. Then I take a break, fall asleep, return to work, go away, or whatever. “Purge and clean” is always a work in progress. I forget to photograph the spotless, organized area before moving onto another room, and by the time I’m done with the second room the first one is back to its normal state again.
This problem extends far beyond the appearance of my apartment. To quote Lady Gaga, I was “born this way”. My toys were all over the house when I was a kid, much to my mother’s frustration. I was also the kid who consistently lost or forgot to bring her homework to school (even when I did it). Hmm. How I got to grad school is anyone’s guess. The disorganization manifested itself in other ways when I got my first job, like not knowing how much I owed on which credit card and which bills I already paid. All along, from preschool to present, I’ve had an issue with keeping my things in order. OCD, only in the opposite form from what most people think, or undiagnosed ADD.
Regardless, I am sitting here (again), in my mid 40s, promising myself I really will change once I’m done with my master’s paper (since most of the clutter consists of articles and books needed for that purpose). I vow once again to behave more like Larry did, but it will be hard since everything–be it suitcases, work bags, the mail, or my articles—explodes on impact when I’m around.