Surely other people, too, stand back when opening cupboards in case of avalanches.
Surely others open drawers then ram them shut again, pretending they never looked.
Surely others smugly tell friends they have planned a whole day of de-cluttering only to open one wardrobe door, lose heart within 3.5 seconds at the sight of enough unwanted cloth to dress the whole wide world, shut the door again, and make a Victoria Sponge instead.
How does it happen? Only two of us live in this house. How can two middle-aged people, with no children living at home, still be in danger of being edged out of the living room, down the hall and out of the front door into the street by a invading force of inanimate objects?
Let's talk about linen. I could talk about crockery, or stationery, or unused window blinds, or spare lamps, or books, or books, or books, but I'll talk about linen.
We have bed linen we use all the time - our day-to-day sheets, duvet covers and pillows/pillow cases. Next, we have linen we use some of the time, for the spare beds when guests come. However, we also have linen we use None Of The Time. Here is a list of some of our unused linen items.
a) Children's blankets we've kept for sentimental reasons. I guess if we ever get a rescue dog, which we'd love to, these tiny blankets would be useful for its bed. But any dog worthy of the name dog would probably be embarrassed by the pink/baby blue lacy edges and the bunny patterns. 'Woof, woof, what the heck do you call this? Did the rescue centre SAY I was a cross-dresser?'
b) Some old pillows we've kept even though we've bought new ones. Should one of us need to sleep sitting up - for instance, should we develop lung conditions - extra pillows could prove useful. But these old ones were bought in the 1980s and are so thin they would offer as much support as a chapatti or an OS map (unfolded).
c) Old pillowcases. The only possible reason for keeping these is in case I want to go to a fancy dress party dressed as a domino. I refer you to this recent post if you didn't see it
d) A piece of vibrant yellow-green-orange-blue African cotton a Ghanaian friend gave me in 2001. It's enough for three tablecloths, or a duvet cover, or 23 pillowcases, but it's so bright and colourful that it would stand out as almost rude in our house which is furnished and decorated in beige and muted reds and browns. People would think we'd had Jackson Pollack round. Its only current use is that it's so bright, when we open the airing cupboard where the linen is kept, we don't need to put a light on.
e) And then there are towels: mahoosive round-the-body-twice towels, towels smaller than that, towels smaller than that, towels smaller than that, towels smaller than that, towels smaller than that, and facecloths. Some of these towels are so ancient, you can peer through the thinnest parts of them as you can through ring doughnuts . Also, however much Lenor you glug into the washing machine, our oldest towels still emerge as rough as pork scratchings. As I say to Paul, 'If I wanted to exfoliate myself past my epidermis and down to the dermis, I would fetch a cheese grater.'
|Rover was making it clear that he wasn't happy about the Peppa Pig blanket|
What is your house stuffed with? Or are you a ruthless, heartless de-clutterer who threw the baby blankets out before the child had even said its first word?