When my grandmother died, we had a yard sale, but I don’t think it went very well considering how much stuff landed up in my parents’ attic. We kept things like blue mason jars, numerous pronged frogs for flower arranging days and an ancient cracked wash basin. My mother was always after me and my sister to help get rid of things, but we never made much progress. The space did look tidier after an afternoon’s work, but within six months or so my mother would start to fret again. Finally it dawned on me. How many times had I tried to get rid of the not one, but three very lumpy “spare” electric blankets? And what about that old wash basin? Mom would look at it, sigh, and put it back in the keep section. Many years went by before I pried it out of her that this gigantic bowl wasn’t even my Grandmother’s- not exactly anyway. Grandmother had rescued it from someone else's trash heap in 1962.
That’s when I realized my mother was not the poster child for organization that she appeared to be. She was actually a minor hoarder. Dad might have been even worse. Having grown up during the Depression, he never threw away a broken lamp cord or a leaky garden hose. Or a piece of string. Or a thumb tack. Although their ranch house was spotless and clutter free, George had a major junk problem in the basement. The lumber pile down there was at least four feet tall and had moved with him more than once. I used to climb it as a kid long before the words helicopter and parent were put together.
Now I look at my basement. Here are the things my kids will have to deal with which include camping stuff, rock posters and bar gear from the old 9:30 Club. Blue mason jars and that cracked wash basin. Yep. One and the same.
If you are like me, then you will be happy to know that this long weekend is overstuffed with opportunities to escape from those endless decluttering projects.
Let's start with Friday when The Rock-A-Sonics and The Judy Chops take over Pearl Street Warehouse downtown or head uptown where Little Red and the Renegades remind us that it is indeed Mardi Gras season up at Haydees.
If you miss Little Red on Friday- they reappear Saturday night at JVs after Jumpin' Jupiter starts the evening off with a free show at 4 p.m. For those of you who love the slipstream of the psychedelic sixties, The Vi-Kings will do their groovy thing at Bethesda Blues. Also on Saturday.
And even if you don't have Monday off, everyone will be acting like you did, so why not go out Sunday night and cut the rug with Chopteeth at Gypsy Sally's?
All that stuff will still be there when you get home.