January 10, 2008

Goners and keepers

In the video which voters chose as the best of The Wall Street Journal, Randy Pausch makes a beautiful request: parents, if your children want to paint their walls, let them.

But should we let children collect things?

After three days in the closet-turned-storeroom (for my old bedroom), I'm sitting on collections of MAD Magazines, origami, footbags, keychains, and die cast airplanes. And rocks.

I bought those rocks at the rock and gem expo, where other children just like me (including Katie) got duped into buying pebbles on a field trip. Some of us (including myself and Katie) even returned the next day with our parents to buy more.

My birth rock is ameythst. I spelled that on the first try.

So the rocks and bouncy balls and MAD magazines and origami are goners. Metal Tapping, with its cardboard frames and stegosaurus pattern, is just about gone too. I can't wait to present it at Half Price Books: Yeah, that's a 3-D puzzle of the White House, but this, this is Metal Tapping.

My mom balks at throwing stuff away. I call down that some of our board games really should be thrown away.

"I though you were going through your stuff," she calls back.

My dad just tells me to forge a signature on the 3-D puzzles so Half Price will think some famous puzzle solver had a hand in completing them. I tell him I'm already going to try to sell them a book stolen from my former high school, stamped with that school's name, and numbered "71" across the pages. I slashed a black line across the school stamp on the inside cover and jotted "sold."

The origami leaf shirt that Katie wore for Halloween, so I could carry her on my shoulders so we could be a tree: goner. All the origami is gone, even the small box with lid that's made out of a magazine clipping of Rage Against the Machine's "Evil Empire."


The kippah I once wore to oblige a crowd for a juggling gig: goner. The moth wing enclosed in Scotch tape, my first glasses, a 10-year old Twix bar, the pipe I used as an "odd juggling item," and a whole slew of plastic football helmets: goners.


My middle school ID cards, and the flannel smiley face shorts I made in Home Ec are gone. (The shorts lasted longer than the locker caddy). My headgear score card, which probably still stands as the greatest motivator of my life, is in the garbage.


I'll sell the MAD magazines, but I tossed my Movielines and Rolling Stones, even the ones with Britney Spears and Angelina Jolie on the covers. If I hadn't sliced the hell out of them, some would be worth as much as $20 now. (I kept two special edition photography issues, and the Aug. 22, 1996 Hot Issue with Cameron Diaz.)

I won't forget earning the Presidential Fitness Award in every middle school semester, but I no longer have a shirt to commemorate doing so.

Token Hawaiian shirt: donate. Magic manipulation card deck: trash. All things bought in threes for juggling (plungers, mini hockey stick, stuffed gorillas (actually won at skee ball), eye ball balls, Christmas tree ornaments): give to younger jugglers.

I'll move away for good soon, and I need my two old trunks for better things than old, horded Victoria's Secret catalogs.

The Alf hand puppet (this one, sans bow, more ragged), has survived, along with the '92 US Bobsled Team pin:


And I'm keeping the flip book, but I'm not sure I drew it.

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Blogger Chase said...

I found a small jar filled with crab legs. How weird is that? Then I looked closer and saw keys that go to a locked 'treasure chest' in the jar as well. Who wants to dig through smelly crab to get into a box, right?

January 10, 2008 at 4:54 AM 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

you wore headgear? really? when?

January 10, 2008 at 10:24 AM 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

what was in the flipbook? it was kinda hard to see.

January 10, 2008 at 10:28 AM 
Blogger Tony Gonzalez said...

The flip book has one motion picture of a hacky sack player. The second motion picture is "guy getting shot and blown up"

January 11, 2008 at 5:02 AM 

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