Sep. 4th, 2017

walkitout: (Default)
I got a 3 mile walk and talked to my friend K. She was up early! Very nice convo.

My sister butt dialed me several times during the walk, which was a little distracting. But there wasn't an emergency, so that's something.

T. went to Boston with the sitter. They are going to play tourist at home: Duck Tours and Swan Boat are both on the agenda for today. Maybe someone will take pictures.

Now that I have some of my files in my office, I am actually going through them and getting rid of things. Who knew this could even happen (<-- a little humor there). I've been thinking a lot about the decluttering books I read as mind candy, and how disturbing I find it that they are so vituperative about The Container Store. After talking to R. and K. about it, I think they are on to some important aspects. R. noted that when a personal organizer / declutterer walks into a place that has already put in nice shelving and containerized everything, it's a _much_ harder gig than walking into a place where there are piles of things on the floor and no storage beyond a poorly kitted closet (shelf and rod and little else), a bureau, a nightstand, the coffee table, an aging desk from college years, the hall closet, linen closet if present and the kitchen cabinets. If you walk into a place with no filing cabinet and install one, everything is magically Awesome. If you walk into a place with multiple packed filing cabinets, it is going to take some effort to get to Awesome. If you walk into a place with all the walls covered with built in cabinets / book cases / etc., you are going to be there for a long while.

So, attacking the Container Store is code for, I Hate Hard Jobs. Not so clever now, hunh?

K. also had some interesting analogies for another issue I have with decluttering books. They generally promise -- or at least lead one to believe -- that if you "keep up on the maintenance", you won't have to do a whole house declutter again. And I've got news for anyone who believes that! There probably _are_ people who will never have to declutter again. But anyone who goes through career changes, has kids, kids grow up and leave, gets divorced, remarries, moves from one place to another or, goddess help you, owns more than one property, and then downsizes, is going to find themselves doing a fair amount of lather, rinse, repeat, and maintenance just is inadequate to describe what is involved. We talked about bonsai, and pruning and some other plant analogies. We discussed whether the repeat declutter the whole house thing is a result of escalating standards (I don't think it is, personally, at least not usually).

I'm thinking about writing a short piece about waves of books about personal organizing, personal time management, decluttering, etc. I've read through at least three distinct phases of this genre, and the evolution of the field is sort of interesting. I don't know if it is worth a lot of time, tho, and it might spoil my simple enjoyment of this non-fiction genre.

ETA: I got a third walk! My sister called as she was headed out on a walk so I took another loop around the mile long block while we chatted. Very nice! A 5 miles walking (on the road, 9.74 miles right now according to the step counter on Apple Watch) day, first in a while. Just under 20K steps now.

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