Wednesday, August 03, 2005

The box of "junk" and the Hawaiian lei

Ever since I have set off the fury of cleaning amongst certain friends (I refer you to blogs from T-L and John), I've been thinking of a particular box full of stuff that has been moving with me as I moved from home, to my first apartment, to my next apartment, and then finally to this house. This box contains usually what I refer to as "junk" - stuff I never go looking for, will likely never need and should just throw out already. But I have a tendency to hang onto things.

I was in Hawaii when I was 10 (as part of my trip around the world) and one of the things I brought back was a Hawaiian lei. I was pretty sure I still had it, and knew that if I did, it would be in this box. With the luau fast approaching, I really wanted to find this lei... it would mean a lot to have that for the party. So I went digging in the box of "junk". Unfortunately, I didn't find the lei, but here is a sampling of some of the "junk" I am hanging onto:
  • old 45 of Olivia Newton John's "Tied Up"
  • My first (but not only!) Thesaurus
  • The first and second scarves I ever knit
  • The first practice piece of embroidery I ever did
  • The racecar I made in shop class in jr. high
  • Every plastic bracelet I ever made, back when they were the in thing
  • 3 sets of dominoes
  • Various pins, including a pin that is a strawberry ice cream cone
  • The instructions for my alarm clock, which I still have in my bedroom and use every day. Dated 1985.
  • Autograph book, mostly full of signatures from elementary & jr high school. Only "famous person" signature: Steve Anthony
  • An acorn weight from an old cuckoo clock
  • A dinky car of a USPS cube van (which actually says US Mail, as was the style at the time)
  • Swatch of purple satin that would become the fabric for the dresses we had made as bridesmaids in my aunt's 1989 wedding
  • 2 sets of flowers I must have worn in my hair at someone's wedding
  • 2 figurines I don't remember ever not having
  • Gr. 5 school ID
  • My old walkman, which is around 20 years old and no longer works
  • Slides of Parliament
  • Beach ball from the 1985 Canada Games
  • Various postcards from my Mom when she was away on trips, either telling me to be good or saying she knew I was being good.
At first I laughed at all of these things I have been hanging onto for most of my life, wondering why in hell I still had this box of crazy stuff. But you know what? It isn't crazy stuff. It isn't junk. It's history; my history. I'm glad I still have it. It made me smile, laugh, and remember some fun times in my life. If you have a box full of "junk" like this, pull it out someday in the near future. It will make you smile, I guarantee it. And if you don't, come on over to my house. I'm sure there's something in there you could have a good laugh at (I am downloading "Tied Up" right now).

This still leaves me without my "vintage" lei. If it's not in this box, I am not sure where it could be... other than maybe my mother is hanging onto it for me. She never responded to my last email. Do I write her about the lei, and risk stirring the fire?


canadianicewolf said...

That depends on how much you want to know if she may possibly have that lei. more ot say, but will email instead.

mare said...

I agree with Terri about the comment and about emailing you, which I just did. :P

dunno vote said...

"Every plastic bracelet I ever made, back when they were the in thing"

"I already made like an infinity of those at Scout Camp" - Napolean Dynamite

Shawn said...

Ahh, the Jr. High race car. Made in shop class with Mr. Bond, who would continually remind you that you could remember his name by thinking of James Bond, or Canada Savings Bonds. What a guy. ;)

Cyn said...

I have a box of things called my memory box. It contains my history as well. Badges from GrandBay Days, placemats from the Caboose, awards from school, my baby books, my ballet slippers worn at my Conservatory exam, my first tap shoes. It's the one box that I have never felt guilty about keeping the items it contains. The things in there tell about who I was and am. It's like a little story about me!

I say keep those things! They are your story and you should be proud of them! (:

mare said...

well put, cyn. :)

John said...

When it is a box, it is perfectly acceptable to have it, treasure it, and occasionally go through it for sentimental value.

It is when it reaches 3, 4, 5 boxes, an entire room in your house, requires a second van when you are moving that it has become a problem.

You already know my opinion on whether you should contact your mom.

liz said...

Decided not to write mother. Will only make things worse by making me appear as though I only contacted her because I want something.

When you say multiple boxes, you're excluding boxes of books and stuffed animals, right? RIGHT?

Cyn said...

I hope it excludes books & stuffed animals. I have a HUGE rubbermaid container full of stuffed animals. PLUS many many many boxes of books. I've always thought of books as my friends and well I wouldn't sell or give away friends.

John said...

Of course it excludes books and stuffed animals. Who doesn't have a box of books or stuffed animals somewhere?

Scott Thomas said...

Have a great time at the Luau. Im genuinely disappointed that I will be unable to attend. No Poi for me.

Lisa said...

I have a bunch of things that I've held on to for years as well. One item is actually still on my dresser - a clown bank that was in my nursery. ^_^

Sure, some of our history is junk, but that's life.

canadianicewolf said...

good mom decision BTW!