Wednesday, March 23, 2011

IMHO-43
December 6, 2010

Once again, that 365 day window of opportunity is closing in on us real fast, isn’t it? Christmas is coming. And, just like every other year it has seemed to have caught us by surprise. How many times have you already heard, “I can’t believe there’s only ________ days ‘til Christmas?!”
Oh, of course you’ll have that 1.7% percent of the population, you know, the keeners who’ve gotten all their Christmas shopping done during Agribition, or something, or they’ve picked up stuff throughout the year at flea markets and craft shows and whatnot, “Oh isn’t this cute? Auntie Jean would love one of these for Christmas”, says one of the 1.7% at a May Long Weekend yard sale, (insert eye roll here), but let me tell you, these people are the exception to the rule.
The remaining 98.3% of us are still waiting for just the right moment when all the stars are aligned and the bank account is at its zenith and then we’ll zoom around in a fit of panic to get all the shopping, baking, decorating, cleaning, card writing…done before the big day.
But thank goodness Christmas is coming because all of my old stuff is…well…getting old! Some of my stuff is actually months old already! I know! And it’s taking up waaayyy too much room, too. These ten rooms, two porches, basement, yard shed and garage, that my wife and I share, are all getting full. And we don’t even have as much stuff as a lot of other people. In comparison, we seem to be lagging way behind in our stuff accumulation.
And therein lies the kicker, though, doesn’t it? If I’m running out of room for my old stuff already, what the heck am I going to do with a bunch of new stuff? We’ve put off that yard/garage sale for over ten years, now, so I doubt that’ll happen any time soon. Not that we were really interested in getting rid of the old stuff anyway, what with its sentimental value and all, so the other alternative would be some outside storage units.
Is it really surprising, then, that one of the fastest growing industries in North America is the building and rental of storage units? Have you been to Regina lately? There’s another bunch of storage units going up near Emerald Park, and if you really pay attention, look at the number of storage units on the north side of #1 Highway/Victoria Avenue on the way in. People keep accumulating stuff at such an alarming rate that there is just never enough room for it all.
And, yes, I am saying much of the above with my tongue firmly planted in my cheek. I don’t really need any new stuff. I haven’t even touched some of my old stuff and if I needed more stuff I’m very capable of buying it myself. I’m already suffering enough from “Boomer’s Guilt” regarding my carbon footprint and my excessive accumulation of stuff, but, then again, it’s the thought that counts, isn’t it?
So here’s a thought…if you’re not one of the aforementioned keeners and you’re having a tough time deciding what to give that someone who has everything, (and nowhere to store it), give his/her something to someone else. Give it to World Vision or the Red Cross or the local Food Bank or to a needy family that could actually use some new stuff.
At first, your gift recipient may be a little disappointed that they won’t actually be receiving any new stuff themselves but point out to them that you’re going to save them money in the long run and that by giving their something to someone else they won’t ever have to pay for its storage.

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