November 19th, 2003

self portrait

The big plan

Due to some weird accounting thing, we are required to use all of our vacation at work before January 31, 2004. I have, according to my manager, 52.29 hours of saved vacation that will have to be taken between now and then. That translates to 6.5 eight-hour days, tack on a floating holiday and I've got seven days off coming to me.

So I was thinking as I came in to work today, what would I do with this time off? Sure, I could, and probably should, visit my friends the Tidballs in LA, my many friends in Seattle and favorite aunt and uncle in Olympia. That would take money, though, even if I did something crazy like drive out there and back. Since I'm in a saving mood of late (and driving during the winter would be foolish) I came up with another brilliant plan.

I'm going to take a each of those days off and turn them into "de-junk" days. I'll start with the garage and, each day off, take a chunk of the house and dispose of all the junk and clutter in it. I'll be taking three sets of Mondays and Tuesdays between now and January 31, 2004 to do this.

I'll have to go over the plan with Ericka, but I intend, at this stage, to be brutal with the disposal. If I can't identify it, it goes. If I haven't used it in a year, it goes. If it won't get used in the next year, it goes. What I can easily donate, I will, but I will not hang on to things because they could be donated later. If no donation opportunity presents itself, it's the trash for all of it.

Exceptions to the "use it or lose it" rule will be made for durable media of artistic value. CDs, DVDs and books are tops on that list. VHS tapes will get a strong review. The emphasis here is on "artistic value;" if I'd want to have my nieces see it (perhaps when they're old enough for some of it, like the Omaha comics), it'll stay.

I will take all my old miniatures up to the Source and see if they want them. If not, it's off to the dust bin. Any odd RPG campaign bits of paper that I haven't used in a year (which would be all of them as I haven't played an RPG in a year) will all go. Board games that I've never played will go. Those I've played will be vetted for fun; the ones that aren't fun will go. RPG books that I have for "reference" only will go. Old zines and apas will go. Books that I read to see how bad they were written will go.

My goal will be to give Ericka one month to go through each box of cloth in the basement. If it isn't made into some project, it'll have to go. Similarly, each sewing pattern will get the "use it or lose it" treatment. Cookbooks we haven't used in a year will go. Pots and pans we haven't used in a year will need review; some of them will be excused as useful for those once-in-a-while kinds of things that the perfect tool will make easy.

So that's the plan, it all starts on December 1, 2003.
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