Regarding Possessions

I am unapologetically fascinated with “tiny house” videos on, and have been known to squander the better part of an evening watching them.  While I think for the most part the actual “Tiny House Movement” is silliness on steroids, featuring IMHO a disproportionate number of people longing to recapture pre-adolescent tree-house lives, I find many of the design solutions to the problem inspiring.  Still, the lives many of these enthusiasts lead are as alien to me as space creatures.  The thing that I think about the most is the de-cluttering gospel that virtually all of them preach.  It appears that none of them have any interests or hobbies outside of some weird combination of ascetic living/working and socializing, some as vagabonds in constant travel (Dante’s Seventh Circle of Hell to me) or even worse, in a megalopolis living in a closet surrounded by people.

Sure, we may all have too much stuff and much more space than we “need” and are too materialistic, but the thought of jettisoning my possessions and reducing my life to a Lowe’s storage shed leaves me non-plussed.  Come on, I have thousands of tools, virtually all of which get used with some degree of regularity during my productive days (I have to wonder how many of these folks have other domiciles or storage units somewhere.)

Divesting myself of all my possessions would be impoverishing, and not just in the material sense.  It would rob me of those things that give me great pleasure on several levels, like this hammer for example.  It was a gift years ago from my long-time friend, MikeM, who custom-made it to fit my hand and my needs.  He crafted it to be both exquisitely functional and beautiful with its hand-fashioned curly maple handle and brightly polished head (which I think was salvaged probably from a bucket of old tools) , and I use it several times almost every day as a utilitarian implement that always does its job.  When I do I get to reminisce about our decades of friendship, and that is a different treasure.

I have other possessions with similar importance to me, some tools, some books, some mementos of other kinds.  They are all powerful touchstones in my life.

But, if ever I get reduced to living in a shed, um, Tiny House, odds are pretty good this hammer is going with me.