In The Trash It Goes

Today was my first ‘real’ day of dumpster duty, participating with Helaine as we tried to empty the house of more accumulated stuff. There’s a lot to choose from!

I suppose some of what we tossed today has resale value… but it’s so much to deal with, nickels and dimes at a time. After the entire job is done, there will be material for eBay – just not this stuff.

We started in the attic. Ours is quite large. It’s a whole floor above three of our bedrooms and a full bath.

I found old computers and circuit boards. It was tough to move them out, but some are so outmoded, it made no sense to continue to house them.

I tried to quickly calculate what they were worth ‘in the day.’ Too depressing. Then I tried to figure out how quickly they’d become outmoded. One computer monitor had a 1999 manufacturers stamp on it. Could you even get a 17″ CRT monitor today?

I did notice one thing that’s changed in computing. I threw out lots of manuals. An old printer had a ‘programmer’s manual.” Some programs had two or three separate printed books. I read those manuals. I miss the reassurance they brought.

I threw out some books related to Photoshop 3. Photoshop version, CS2, is really Photoshop 9!

As we carried load after load to the front door, for a wheelbarrow ride the rest of the way to the dumpster, I realized how nice a ranch home would be right now.

We headed to the garage next. Are you like us? Do you push things against the wall, hoping you’ll never have to deal with them again?

As with the attic, there was lots of stuff in the garage ripe for throwing. Each successive layer removed revealed cobwebs and dirt. Is there a place where dirt accumulates better than a garage? Those big doors open to the elements a few times a day, and then there’s whatever the tires track in.

I moved in with the shop vac. Everything was quickly scarfed up – though my back won’t soon forget the stooping I did. Growing up in an apartment, a shop vac was foreign to me. I learned quickly as a homeowner, this was no option!

Helaine called me over. She said she’d found a dead frog. Nope – dead mouse… long dead.

You can’t live in the woods without having a mouse in the house every once in a while. Luckily, there’s no evidence they’ve ever lived in the parts where we live.

After the garage, it was on to the basement. There was too much there for one afternoon, so Helaine will continue while I’m at work this week.

One thing we did do was clean the basement’s walk out steps. It’s possible they’ve never been vacuumed in the 16 years we’ve lived here. They look great now.

I threw out some more videocassettes – some from my days in Buffalo. It’s not that I didn’t want to cling, but even today there are few places to play these outmoded U-Matic format tapes.

I did keep a box of reel-to-reel audio tapes. I have a few marked 1973. I might have been in Cleveland, or maybe Phoenix, then. I’m not sure. I do know radio airchecks aren’t for tossing.

The dumpster is still a long way from being full. Thirty cubic yards is a heck of a challenge!

We’ve got one more week with it as a house guest. I told Helaine, when it’s picked up and the driver looks inside, we won’t be embarrassed.

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