Saturday, January 31, 2009

Lost and Found

My wife had a yard sale to dispose of some things before a move to another town. I had jars and cans filled with nuts, bolts, washers, parts from engines, specialized fasteners and small items salvaged over the years from myriad jobs. I had moved the "junk" across several states and through at least five houses. I had parts that I would probably never use so I decided to put a small price on most of the jars and cans. Women bought them, bought every one of them, and took them home to some lucky husband. It was a mistake that haunted me for years.

Living miles from town requires planning and forethought. Its frustrating to be in the middle of a small job on Saturday and need a part that requires a trip to town. For the next ten years I'd be working on a project and need an item unexpectedly. A quick search through my memory and I'd think of a part that could be used in a pinch. I'd remember when I salvaged the part and the equipment that I took it from. I'd remember which can or jar contained the part. As I'd start for the shed to get it a sudden thought would hit me. They're gone! I put that container in the yard sale. Time to head to town or wait until Monday.

I learned my lesson. Never get rid of a salvaged part if there's a remote chance that it may be needed sometime in the next sixty years or so.

Crowded utility shed.
One corner of my crowded utility shed. Parts, tools and items hang on all four walls and from every rafter. (Larger version)

Periodically I have to clean and organize my utility shed and a smaller storage shed. Today was the day and it was interesting but unsettling. Years ago I remembered things I no longer owned. Today I found things I own but didn't remember. It seems I've developed the habit of needing something for a task and purchasing it. A few weeks later I need the same item and buy another roll or can or box. I have tools that I don't remember buying. I found enough motor oil to sustain a small fleet of vehicles. Scary!

My utility shed is packed. Next year I plan on building a large workshop. If I do, there's no telling what I may loose other than my memory.


Blogger Anvilcloud said...

It's a mug's game, knowing what to keep and what to pitch.

I get you on the forgetting part.

2/01/2009 08:46:00 AM  
Blogger anonymous julie said...

When you need something, check the shed before you head out?

immess is, hilariously, the verification. like, i'm a mess. hee.

2/03/2009 01:11:00 PM  
Blogger graceonline said...

Until about five years ago, I could remember where on a particular page in a particular textbook in a particular year of school I first learned a particular fact. I could describe the photo that appeared on the page too (there was rarely more than one). I too could remember nearly every detail of an object, no matter how old. Now, like you, I run across things I don't recall buying and miss things I gave away long ago. As my dear ma says, getting old is the pits!

3/04/2009 10:45:00 PM  

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