What do you make of that, Doctor Freud?

So I had this dream recently. I think it’s what they call a ‘wish fulfillment’ dream. The sort where you express your deepest, darkest, most hidden and wicked desires. When I woke up, I felt a guilty exhileration, far stronger than any shame at breaking – for me – the ultimate taboo. I felt invigorated and contented – a new woman, in fact. Then reality came crashing back and I realised everything was as before.

This was the object of my night-time desire …

Yes, I dreamed I had a skip and I could chuck – well – whatever I wanted into it. It was intoxicating! In went the books I’m never going to read and papers and magazines, posters and bags. In went the bottles, jars, cans, plastic bags and spent batteries. Scratty potatoes, half empty bags of organic barley, sticky jars with unreadable labels, aged cans of worthy borlotti beans – gone. Ill advised sales-rack bargains, expensive shoes that don’t quite fit, jumpers that itch, sentimental bags of the children’s old baby clothes, anything a moth might fancy. Cosmetics bought in a fit of optimism and that I don’t get around to using – basically all of them, save about five must-haves.

I was free.

But, as I say, it was just a dream. In reality, my eco-worrier tendencies would never allow me such extravagent gestures. In my kitchen, worthy stacking boxes are endlessly and painstakingly filled with recyclables, the Oxfam shop gets the books and clothes in dribs and drabs (particularly drabs), the unpalateably healthy foods will probably stay put until weevils take a fancy to them, and the cosmetics will only leave the shelves when they start to smell funny.

That’s my excuse and I’m sticking to it. To tell you the truth, I don’t think I could bring myself to undertake such radical surgery, even without the eco-concerns. I love my stuff. I know I’m drowning in it, but I still love it. Chucking it all would be like having my arm chopped off without anaesthetic.

I think I’ll stick to biting my fingernails.


17 thoughts on “What do you make of that, Doctor Freud?

  1. rivergirlie, it seems to me that in your dream it would have been far easier to put the stuff you want to keep in the skip, van, or even rather small box and simply abandon your house and go and start afresh somewhere new. I just hope no men read this and realise we don’t dream about them all the time.

  2. Oh gosh, I’ve had that dream before. And the men just showed up at my door and finished painting my house for me. You know, the house that I’ve lived in for almost 2 years and still haven’t finished? Yeah. Nice dream.

  3. That sounds like heaven! 🙂 I looooove clearing out old junk but I must confess I never have the ability or will power to throw out books, even when I know I’ll never read them. But yes, old clothes, shoes, miscellaneous stuff. I feel so damn good when it’s gone.

    But never mind. I have a friend who picks up scraps of bubblewrap etc at work & takes it all home with her on the off-chance that she might use it. I’m never quite sure how she manages to get in the door! You’re not alone in your hoarding tendencies. 🙂 x

  4. My skip would be full of those plastic take away containers – I could never throw them away in ‘real life’, but I have a damn cupboard full of them. They do come in useful, but hell – when am I ever going to use 50 small tupperware boxes?

  5. Yep, our pile of plastic take away containers is on top of a cupboard and trying to reach the ceiling. And we recycle tins, plastic bottles, newspapers, cardboard, glass, etc. I’d hate to wake up and find our council is sending it all to landfill in China.

    Hey, why are you not dreaming about me?


    Oh. Right.

  6. Oh, I love stuff too. Even the plastic takeaway containers (half a cupboard full).
    We’ve got do some MAJOR SORTING OUT of said stuff soon though, as we have a house move looming – I am quite looking forward to all that cathartic binning and charity-shop-bagging (although not so much relish for the packing). Oh, for a skip of one’s own!

  7. you could always just have a yard sale. then a bunch of strangers are left with all your junk and there’s no guilt of throwing anything away! oh yeah, and i tagged you!

  8. I would also like a skip. In Germany, being eco-warriers, it’s so hard to get rid of stuff. You have to fill out an online form, pay €X into a bank account, and on the fourth Tuesday of the month when the daffodils forget to flower, put all your stuff out on the pavement. I never remember, and so am collecting a cellar full of mysterious and ancient objects which I am sure are dragging my positive energy down into the earth and giving me headaches. I just want to toss the lot.

  9. I grew up in a house full of junk and I once lobbied for a skip, but it wasn’t allowed … terribly expensive and a bit decadent … like drive-thru car washes. I’ve still never been in one of those. And I still want a skip.

    This skip fetish you’ve uncovered is a goddam *movement*!

  10. Same here! Wife very tolerant but the junk in one room is creeping across the floor. If a skip and car washes are decadent, how about a drive through skip? … and no I won’t go on about a certain car that’s mentioned in a joke that involves a skip.

    As for Bills flying carrier bags, we have a bin for these and use them as bin liners. Thats the bin the rubbish goes in, not the bin they’re stored in! Trouble is they’re breeding. There are bags in there that are too small to get your hand in and some so big you could climb into them. What are they for?

    Trouble is we have a small holding with more room than we deserve so stuff from way back is carefully stored all over the place. You spot something while looking for something else and it triggers all sorts of memories and off I go into a sentimental dream. No wonder I wonder where the time went and don’t get much done. I’m always doing something else!

  11. rilly you have NO idea what an attractive suggestion that is at the moment!
    steph there comes a point when you just accept that it’s not going to happen all nicely, and in one go. tragic, but true. i feel your pain.
    lqs interestingly enough, i derive about the same pleasure from chucking out as i do from acquiring. if only the two could cancel each other out …
    ms m if only i’d had your tupperware reserves the other day! despite having bought loads of little containers, i still couldn’t find enough for the twins to take all their ingredients into school for food tech. i fear i might have thrown some out in an overzealous moment.
    farty glad to hear you’re so very green – and decreasing your own carbon …er… footprint.
    sweatpants we’re kindred spirits – i always knew it!
    lucy have you started on the great chuck out yet? ‘a skip of one’s own’ – brilliant! wish i’d thought of that…
    billy that’s the function of plastic bags, i think. there’s no other possible use for them (except to give journalists something to write about)
    denguy is your den all nice and neat and minimalist? i’ve resigned myself to be a maximalist
    ydm yard sales are a great idea. but sadly, i live in the arse end of nowhere. foxes might run away with my stuff, though. *goes off into a little reverie about foxes reading my old books*
    moobs my dear fellow, how could you doubt it? and organic too
    charlotte my sister used to live in germany and i was amazed by the stuff out on the pavement. very organised … but a bit intimidating
    raf as a parent, i think it’s important to deprive one’s children of experiences like that. think how excited you’ll be first time you go through the car wash! i don’t think i’ve ever taken my two either – see? i’m not such a mad modern parent after all
    fez welcome! if you have a small holding you’re probably green enough already. interestingly – i do know someone who files his nails. his clutter issues are FAR worse than mine

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