It occurred to me the other day that I have a problem.  Truth be told, it wasn’t just the other day.  It’s pretty much every day.  I have often written stories here about embarrassing moments.  I’ve written about the indiscretions of my youth.  Now it is time to expose my dark side.  It’s time to tell you about one of my biggest flaws.  It’s something I struggle with each and every day.  Ok, here it goes…

I’m a collector.  I pick what my long-suffering husband calls an “obsession” and then I buy everything associated with it.  Not only do I collect the collectibles, but also every book related to the collection.  eBay loves me!  My love affair with Amazon is unparalleled.

Wow, I can’t believe how good it feels to get that out in the open.  Ok, laugh if you wish, but this is serious stuff!  Actually, it is about stuff.  Lots of stuff.  I’m not a TV-worthy hoarder.  There is some semblance of control and organization, but my house is a shrine to all of my collections.  This is not a good thing.  It’s also not a good thing that this house has 13 rooms.  Now don’t go thinking it’s some hulk of a mansion.  It’s just an old farmhouse with teeny, tiny rooms.

To put things into perspective, we live on the ground floor.  The entire second-floor houses my stuff.  Plus, the barn and the garden shed are stuff to the gills.  There are only two of us, so some of the storage rooms have specific themes. I’d go through them one by one for you to give you an inkling of just how beyond help I truly am, but it would be a long post.  Instead, I will just highlight a very few of my very disparate obsessions from the past.

Books:  Book collecting has been part of my life ever since I could read.  Probably before that.  I have thousands of them.  They are the artifacts of my various obsessions.   I think we should move on.

Tropical fish: I once had 13 aquariums because I wanted to collect many different types of fish.  I now have one aquarium.  I’m not hopeless in this department anymore.  See?  I’m making progress!  Don’t be too proud of me.  I’m still hopeless in many others.

Cooking supplies:  I bought the best pots and pans.  I have every gadget a cook could want.  I bought cookbooks and dishes and bakeware and tools.  I have every appliance available.  This is all well and good, but…I don’t cook.  My oven sees action about twice a year.  I’ve been known to store cereal boxes in there. Right this very minute it has some cookies and a peanut butter cup sitting on the pizza stone that hasn’t seen pizza in a very long time.  I thought all of these things would entice me to cook, but so far it hasn’t worked.  Maybe when I retire.  Oh wait, I am retired.  Sigh…

Beanie Babies, Boyd’s bears.  There are many bins upstairs devoted to these creatures.  If Beanie Babies become a hot collectible again I’ll be rolling in the dough.  Of course, dough reminds me of all of those cooking supplies and that’s just not a productive train of thought so we shall move on.

T-shirts:  You might think that I collect the really cool shirts with the graphic designs.  That might make some semblance of sense, but no.  I collect regular t-shirts in every color imaginable.  I think I have three shades of melon.  Don’t even ask me about purple.  Seriously, don’t ask.  Do you know how many shades of purple there are in this world?  If you don’t, just come see one of my t-shirt shelves.  Yes, I said shelves.  With an S. I have many.

Yarn:  This was an obsession I had for a long time and I’m not sure I’m done with it yet.  I have a yarn room.  Yes, you read that right.  I have an entire room with bins of yarn stacked to the ceiling.  There was a time when I did a lot of knitting.  Since epilepsy struck I haven’t picked up my needles. That was one part of my brain that stopped working.  I didn’t know if I could ever knit again.  I miss it.  I think it’s time to break open the bins and organize the yarn so I can actually plan what to do with it. It won’t hurt to try.  The thing is, I bought yarn as a collection rather than having any plan on what to use it for.  I have a lot of single skeins.  My friend Tony over at THE YARN BLABBER is giving me tremendous inspiration.  He’s also rolling his eyes right now, I can just feel it.  You should see what he knits.  I’m not just saying that.  I mean you should go to his site and truly see it!

Rubber stamps:  I was bored while waiting for a flight to Chicago and I picked up an interesting art magazine to read on the plane.  It showed lots of fun creations using rubber stamps.  By the end of the flight, I was in collector mode.  I bought them mounted on wood.  I bought them unmounted.  I went to conventions.  I did demonstrations at conventions.  I have over 10, 000 rubber stamps if you count both types.  Yes, I am ill.

I made wonderful friends who owned a stamp shop.  They enabled me…a lot!  BUT, in my own defense, I used them…not the friends, the stamps!  I had fun with them…both the friends and the stamps!    The featured image shows a couple of my attempts at rubber stamp goodness.  I did try to organize them last summer.  I got tired.  I stopped.  But before I stopped organizing, I bought some sets online.  I mean if I was getting organized a few more would hurt, right?  The rubber stamp/art supply room is still disheveled.  Maybe I’ll tackle it again soon…probably not.

Worry Eaters: Here’s an obsession that is totally the fault of Rhapsody Bohème  She told me about these cool stuffed beings called Worry Eaters.  It’s all her fault.  You can unzip the creatures’ mouths and insert a piece of paper with your worries on it.  It’s a way for kids to get worries off their minds and also a way for parents to help because they’ll know what is worrying their kids.  See how cute these worry-chomping monsters are?

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Rhapsody Bohème mentioned them to me and a collection was born.  We’ve even talked about doing a post together with the Worry Eaters as characters.  It’s all her fault!!!  I’m easily enticed.  I always go overboard.  I’m not sure there’s any hope for me.  However, if I get too worried about it I can use those Worry Eaters as they were meant to be used.  I’ll write “Rhapsody Bohème might lead me astray again!” and stuff it in a Worry Eater mouth.  But which mouth?  I have so many…

There really should be a program for people like me.  But there would be meetings. I hate meetings.  I don’t have time for meetings.  I’m too busy buying stuff and finding places to put it.

 

51 thoughts on “The Stuff of Obsessions

  1. Oh my goodness…I so need a worry eater! A really, really big one! I admit, I worry about everything and everyone. I try to not worry and I have improved, but I am who I am! You need a dammit doll next! Don’t look them up on Amazon…don’t you do it!

    Liked by 2 people

  2. I get it Linda. I’m not AS BAD as I used to be, but I still have tendencies. At one time I had an entire bookcase of Stephen King books. Every thing he had ever written, at that time. Not only that I have version in paperback AND Hardback. The they were all arrange in cronilogical order by when they were written! I was obsessed! I ended up selling or trading them all off when I moved from Oregon to Texas.
    A couple of years ago, I started crocheting on a regular basis, Then I discovered this HEAVENLY Blanket yarn by Bernat. Well, I now have boxes and boxes if the stuff. I finally quit buying it, but it was hard to stop. 🙂 I’m with ya sister!! ❤

    Liked by 1 person

  3. I collect nothing, absolutely nothing. I have a lot of stuff, usually associated with the various activities that I participate in, but nothing that would constitute a collection. I think that is because my mom was a huge collector (she was convinced that her “valuable collectors items” would be worth a million dollars one day). The reality was we lived in a house full of crap. It was cluttered and awful, all the time. I now am exactly the opposite. If it has not been useful in the last 6 months, out it goes! I make regular donations to goodwill and a variety of charities just to be sure that we do not have anything extra that is not useful.
    I may need therapy!!! 🙂

    Liked by 2 people

  4. I’m dying right now. Ha! Once I had odd collection passions from A to Z, but I have tempered them/ I once had rock and coins and books, but gave most of it away. But I still have a dozen or so books related to the languages I once studied — thirty five years ago. But I’ve been limited to what can fit in one room.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. I am so totally NOT rolling my eyes. I have quite the yarn collection!!! I really hope you get back into knitting soon. If I was retired, I’d spend a lot of time knitting. And crocheting. And cooking. It sounds like you have kitchenware galore, too, so you should maybe consider taking a cooking class. That would be fun, wouldn’t it?

    Liked by 1 person

          1. I’m surprised there are no vegetarian cooking classes in central Maine. Very weird. In southern Maine there are some, I think. Hmmmm now I wonder if there are any in the entire state! South Berwick has an organic grocery store with vegetarian things.

            Liked by 1 person

            1. Oh yes, we have health food stores in Waterville, Bangor, and Belfast that are particularly good. Belfast even has a vegetarian restaurant that is excellent. However, I don’t think I’d find much for veggie cooking classes near Skowhegan. We’re in meat and potato country.

              Liked by 1 person

  6. Oh well that’s good to know a little more. We all have our flaws but at least that could be a useful one, you see, if I’ll get my own house someday, i can call you and you’ll furnish me with all i need for the house 😁😉
    Just kidding…. no, why don’t you give some of the things you don’t use to some families in real need. I’m sure they will be very grateful and in the new free space you can collect other things.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Books and plants are my downfall so I totally get it. There have been other things in the past (including fish and aquaria too). I am getting better – I can just about cope now with not having the full set of something.

    Liked by 3 people

    1. Plants have been a great disappointment of late. I love them, too but Walter has had a deleterious effect on them. He seems to think that they are best out of their pots and strew across the floor. Sigh…

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      1. The people who work with Molly at the nursery know never to lay plants out moving away ftom her because she will drag her bed through the lot just to follow. The retriever was worsr but then retrievers are often great lumbering lummoxes. Have you tried mentioning to Walter, casually, that he is the right size for making a hearth rug? We try it with Molly but she ignores it.

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        1. Walter hears only what he wants to hear. He plays dumb but he’s way too smart. Not only can he unzip things, and open doors… now he’s learned to unscrew things. If those actions don’t work, he just bites it till it breaks. Crushing full cat food cans has been a problem. The cats live in terror.

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                    1. Humph! Right now I am balancing this laptop on his head! Has a perfectly good couch section where he could curl up and be comfy, but no, he has to be in my lap. He is NOT a lap dog. He refuses to understand this. How is Molly doing? Did she spend Christmas with you?

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                    2. 😀😀
                      Nah. Last saw Molly on the 17th when we took her home. Susan might see her on Friday. We may have her again one weekend in january. I really miss her. She is most definitely too independent to be a lap dog and very rarely does that with anyone. Susan sometimes gets the dubious honour of Molly on her lap. I thought it was my turnon he last visit but she lost interest once she saw my plate was empty. One track mind that dog.

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  8. Lol. I’ve come to realize as some women collect shoes and purses, I collect dog agility equipment and crates. Since realizing this I’ve become more restrained and say “no” every time someone offers me yet another free dog crate, but suffice to say we have many in the shed, cellar and just about every room of our house. Yes, it’s a problem. Lol. I will say my saving grace is my tendency when stressed to get rid of stuff, you can always tell when I’m upset as I start piling bags by the front door to donate, a tendency that stresses the hell out of my husband who prefers to keep everything.

    Liked by 1 person

  9. Oh, my, I can relate to your obsessions! I’ve been a comic book collector since age 13 and am now 65, so imagine just how many I have. My second obsession, also started in early teenhood, is/was collecting autographed photos. I have hundreds of them, signed by such greats as Bette Davis and Bob Hope. The more dead the better (worth more that way, not that I’d ever sell them). Many of them were collected through the mails when these people were still living, so yeah, I’ve been at this a long time. Like you, I’m into books–only books about entertainment. Love movie and TV books. Love anything nostalgia-related. I’ve been able to carve out a freelance writing career just concentrating on my nostalgic pursuits. Have you ever thought of that, Linda? You obviously have the skills, and I think you could easily sell an article. You’d be surprised at how many magazines cater to Baby Boomers and the nostalgia market. Getting old has its benefits!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Oooh, really fun collections you have there! Getting autographed photos of those great actors from decades past must have been a lot of fun.

      As for me writing magazine articles, I’ve never thought of doing it. I’m not really a writer. I just have fun relaying odd bits of my life or observations. You are the writer! Having a published novel is no small feat! I really do appreciate the kind words and encouragement. You’ve made my day!

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  10. I was wondering how come I had not heard from you in a while. Thought perhaps you were sick and came to check your blog… OMG There are lots of posts I have missed. Something is wrong because I do Follow you but I don’t get anything. I will try to fix this (have to speak to Darren because I know this happened to him as well once). Anyway, wanted to say: great post! I only collect old keys (I have written a post about it actually. Soon to be published). You definitely have a problem my friend! But it makes up for the good laugh you have given us. Besides, when kids visit your home I bet they have a blast playing Hide and Seek!

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Oh! I had that happen to me, too. For some reason the email notifications get turned off in Reader. If Darren doesn’t set you right, give me a holler and I’ll try to show you how to put them back on. So many people have had this happen that I’m surprised WP hasn’t fixed it.

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