How (Not) to Get Rid of Things

I’ve written 50,000 words on my next book, A Collector of Collections. The more I write, the more I begin to suspect that I’m less of a collector and more of a hoarder. Many of the things I claim to collect are just things I’ve amassed over time and can’t seem to part with. Last Friday, I decided to take a stand. Last Friday, I decided to get rid of something. Anything.

With gusto, I walked over to my toy shelves and scanned them for something I could get rid of. Just one thing. Anything. After looking for a minute or two, I found it — er, them.

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I don’t remember when or where I acquired these plush figures, which is both a good and bad sign. They mean nothing to me. There are six of them, each one representing a different General Mills cereal. There’s the chef from Cinnamon Toast Crunch, the Honey Bee from Cheerios, Sonny from Cocoa Puffs, Lucky the Leprechaun from Lucky Charms, Count Chocula, and Chip the Cookie Hound from Cookie Crisp. A couple of them still have their tags attached to them, identifying them as General Mills Breakfast Babies. They were obviously a cash-in on Beanie Babies.

My first thought was to toss them in the trash, but I quickly decided donating them to the thrift store would be better. Before I scooped them up, I had to check online and see what they were worth. I searched online for “General Mills Breakfast Babies” and discovered that there weren’t just six Breakfast Babies released. There were seven.

I was missing Trix the Rabbit.

One “buy it now” later…

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Well, that didn’t go well.

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6 comments to How (Not) to Get Rid of Things

  • Maybe this can be a bit of motivation:

    Learning to UNcollect stuff can be the sequel book.

    I have had to do that, under extreme duress; I think you have the willpower to do it before there’s a figurative gun to your head.

    Just a thought.

    I need to be better at finishing my own bleepin’ books than I am at recommending book topics for others to write.

  • Stephen B

    Now you can donate the complete set to the thrift store. Just kidding. I am the same way.

  • Paul in AZ

    You have achieved completion on “this” collection. Sell it on eBay and you’ll be done. Don’t think about it, just do it.

  • I feel you pain buddy. I have been holding off on buying any Starriors toys forever, because I know I will be unable to stop at just one or two. However, nostalgia was too much and I bought one for a reasonable price a few weeks ago. It’s one I had as a kid and I love it! So much so that he already has an enemy to fight on its way in the mail. And thus, I will now be collecting Starriors.

  • AArdvark

    Did the feeling of elation at having completed the set outweigh the guilt of not meeting your quest-for-less?

    That’s a tough balance, man.

    THE
    SEE-SAW
    AARDVARK

  • Matt Kimber

    I can relate to this. Folks without that strong sense of nostalgia just would not understand. I almost envy them, just in the sense that they can pitch almost anything without remorse. I end up playing this little passive-aggressive game with myself. To satisfy the practical side of my brain, I actually DO get as far as listing things on eBay. But my subconscious side prices the stuff too high, so that it almost surely will not sell. I guess I look at it as a win-win — I really don’t want to part with certain things, but if I must, then it will be a haul. But yeah…parting with stuff = not that easy!

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