And do we not all long to throw down our altars and rid ourselves of our possessions? Do we not gaze coldly at our clutter and say, “If these objects express my personality, then I hate my personality.” For what, on the face of it, enhances life less than a work of art? One tires of it. One cannot eat it. It makes an uncomfortable bedfellow. One guards it, and feels obliged to enjoy it long after it has ceased to amuse. We sacrifice our freedom of action to become its privileged guardian, and we end its imprisoned slave. All civilizations are by their very nature “thing-oriented” and the main problem of their stability has been to devise new equations between the urge to amass things and the urge to be rid of them.
But things have a way of insinuating themselves into all human lives. Some people attract more things than others, but no people, however mobile, is thingless. A chimpanzee uses sticks and stones as tools, but he does not keep possessions. Man does. And the things to which he becomes most attached do not serve any useful function. Instead they are symbols or emotional anchors. The question I should like to ask without necessarily being able to answer it is, “Why are manâ€™s real treasures useless?” For if we understood this, we might also understand the convoluted rituals of the art market.,
Bruce Chatwin Anatomy of Restlessness
The girl is gone this weekend. I’m starting to feel like the house is just a place where she keeps her stuff and does her laundry! I suppose that’s normal for any parent of an older teen, and good practice for when she goes off to college. It doesn’t mean that i have to like it, though!
Sam has been Mr. Podcasty tonight, recording a roundtable discussion for someone else’s show, then recording a new Square One episode with Bill Walton. I’m tempted to do a Fibrant Living again. It’s certainly been long enough!
I have hopes of rearranging the living room to some extent tomorrow, to make the house more inviting for guests and make it easier to play the piano. I’m really tempted to reclaim the back bedroom as “office space,” but Sam will kill me if I ask him to move the big sofa again. I just have this feeling that as long as our computers are out here in the public area, we aren’t going to be very successful at keeping the public areas uncluttered. I’d need a desk to move my computer in there, though, or we’d need another table.
We really, really need to improve the lighting in the living room. One of the torchiere lamps has a broken switch, and we don’t really have any task lighting at all. I’d much prefer the sort of lamps that have those adjustable heads, so some point up and another points down at whatever you’re reading or stitching.
Yep, I’m totally random tonight. This is Cyn on breakthrough meds. Whee!