Packrat behaviour.

I often tease the Snook about being a packrat. He saves everything on the off-chance he might need it someday. Me, I’m the opposite. I have a psychological need to purge. I often err on the side of getting rid of things, even things that I probably should keep. That’s why these pictures scared the hell out of me. That, my friends, is my nightmare and – I fear – the Snook’s future. *shudder* (Link via Metafilter.)

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  1. That. Is. Effing. Nuts.

    To quote one of the replies on that message board: “Holy s*** that’s a lot of s***!” If it isn’t a hoax (moving the same Xerox boxes around), then I’d like to spend a couple of hours in that house to salvage the books (the only items I hoard) and then set the whole (unoccupied) house on fire and be done with it. I’m like you, Kris–I give or throw away almost everything I can whenever I can.

  2. See, I also like to organize. My impulse seeing that is to open every box and put things away. I’d do it for free.

    At least the house didn’t look too unhygienic. I’ve seen similar behavior once before on the nightly tabloid “news” program here. They showed an old guy who had completely filled his house with rubbish and cats. He slept in a tiny hollow in one of the closets. His neighbors kept reporting him for being a health violation – because most of his stuff was more “garbage” and less “relatively clean Xerox boxes” – but there’s not a lot you can do when the person refuses to believe they’ve got a problem.

    Somebody in that Metafilter discussion pointed out how weird it was that she had really organized bookshelves with her knickknacks all nicely displayed… but then could leave the rest of the house looking like that. Definitely OCD, with maybe a touch of paranoid schizophrenia in there. (Worrying about convicts stealing her identity??)

  3. My maternal grandmother’s house used to look like that. Then when they sold their house and bought an RV to travel the countryside, the RV looked like that. Now they’re living in my mother’s old house, and now IT looks like that. I remember helping them move the first time, and finding boxes upon boxes of National Geographic magazines from the 50’s… Junk mail from the 60’s, lots of broken shit, tons of dead houseplants, etc. And, of course, lots of dust. It was not fun having to spend the summer with grandma. My mother is a pack rat, as well, but at least she confines the boxes of crap to her basement.

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