It’s not bad enough that Pat (my husband) is a pack rat – he also feels the need to bring home treasures he has found on his walks! We already have a garage full of useless stuff –
- a ’48 Willy’s Jeep which hasn’t run since I met Pat 34 years ago
- at least 3 lawnmowers (of which only two work)
- a set of 1968 encyclopedias
- a broken mirror
- parts of various swingsets we have owned over the years (our children are 28, 26, 24 and 22 years old)
- garden hoses with so many leaks they have become sprinkler hoses
- sprinkler hoses which could now be used as fire hoses
- campaign signs from a candidate for mayor who ran 25 years ago and has been dead for at least 15
- and a partridge in a pear tree — no, the partridge is dead and the mice won’t come near the place!
Actually, this is what is left after we cleaned out some stuff a few years ago — at one time we had over 20 bicycles in various stages of disrepair and a toilet.
There also is no room under the stairs because that is also packed full of useless stuff –
- notes from Pat’s history and art classes in college. These were taken in pencil, so now they only qualify as blank pieces of paper
- an air organ which hasn’t worked in over 40 years
- textbooks from Pat’s college days – which were over 30 years ago
- greeting cards from our wedding. I’ve tried to toss them — but he keeps taking them out of the trash
- old blankets that are usable on a bed anymore. Might need them in case a tornado traps in the basement and we need something to keep us warm.
- other stuff in boxes which haven’t been opened since we moved into the house in 1982
So the question remains — why does Pat feel the need to bring even more useless and old crap home?? One time, he brought home a picture he found in the trash. It was of a woman praying – and it just had a slight bit of damage — a tire mark right through the center of the picture!!! He brought home flourescent lights from his uncle’s office before they tore it down — not usable in our house or anyone elses! He has walked into the house with flashlights he has found in the road — most of which don’t work. One time he brought what appeared to be a giant spring home — don’t know what he was going to do with it but he was upset when it ‘disappeared’ from the top of the refrigerator. He felt the same way when the giant lug nut ‘disappeared’ too.
I admit it – when he brings obviously crazy, totally useless stuff home – it disappears. I send it back into the great void from which it came — it obviously needs to complete its voyage and my house is not the end of that trip!
I think the reason that Pat brings this junk home is that occasionally he finds something useful – like a working flashlight or a tool he doesn’t have. He did find a lawnmower in a ditch when he was walking the dog and felt the need to bring it home — even though it was missing a few tires and there was a good reason someone threw it in the ditch. One of our daughters was driving by the night Pat brough home this treasure and she thought it was a crazy homeless man dragging his belongings around. I had to tell her it was just her father with his latest ‘find’. Unfortunately, it is these kinds of finds which make Pat think it is worthwhile to pick up things on his walk. In this case, he was able to take the engine off the ‘found’ lawnmower and put it one of the other mowers slowly turning to dust in the garage and SURPRISE — he now had a working lawnmower! Of course, we didn’t throw away any of the old lawnmowers – because we might be able to cannibalize them later!
Pat believes that everything he brings home is a treasure and could be useful one day. When I disagree with him, he reminds me that he found me and brought me home – what can I say to that?