Life Is Too Short To Be Neat

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On short notice, I stopped by a business associate’s house to pick something up for work and couldn’t help but notice she had no stuff out. No piles of mail, no piles of papers, no piles of shoes to go up stairs, no piles of screws and pins and parts to things. Admittedly, she could have cleared the counters with a sweep of her arm into a box hidden in the oven but I don’t think so. Am I the only one with stuff? No matter how many times I “organize” my stuff, I can’t keep up. I feel like Lucy Ricardo at the chocolate factory–the stuff comes in faster than I can put it away. I was beginning to feel inadequate, until I told myself that this is probably a genetic disorder. The way that I have coped with my dirty, “messy” little secret is that I know exactly what is in each pile except for when I need something. While I do crave the kind of organization featured in magazines, cool little bins lined up neatly in cubbies, there is an odd comfort in my piles. Writers are unkempt and a clean, neat desk doesn’t make me feel like a serious writer. So, my piles will remain as they are until such time that I have company. Then I shall stack all the piles in a corner and put a plant in front of them. Life is too short to be neat. That’s my story and I’m sticking to it.

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