Tuesday, September 7, 2010
A wise man coined the proverb, "a rolling stone gathers no moss". I don't think he was ostensibly talking about changing apartments, but the axiom still holds. It's safe to say that The 20 Amsden and it's inhabitants had accumulated their fair share of moss and a hearty layer of dust/grime/bile over the past three years, and short of growing roots into the carpeting, the lot of us were due for a change. Well, at least John and I. Every August we had resolved to find a new apartment. Something closer to the city, something with a washer/dryer, something without a junkie for a neighbor. Yet every September, we would find ourselves welcoming new roommates into the fold. It was as though Arlington had clouded our brain with visions of sugarplums that we were helpless to brush away. We quickly realized that finding a huge apartment with laundry in Central Square for less than $600 was beyond a pipe dream, unless you want to live like Anne Frank inside of a Bally's Total Fitness. Needless to say, every year culminated in us retreating back to the open arms of The 20 Amsden.
It didn't help that we had so much shit that we were more inclined to start a raging bonfire of furniture and cutlery and wrapping paper in the backyard than seriously consider moving every last item out of the place. Foolishly (or not), we had gratefully accepted whatever items the previous tenants of the 20 Amsden bequeathed to us, knowing full well that we had just graduated from school and had not a stick of furniture or a coffee mug to our name. Little did we know that we were also accepting 400 packets of duck sauce stuffed into a drawer or an air conditioner from the great depression. As the years progressed, John and I developed into semi-functioning adults and the carousel of roommates saw 9 others call Amsden home, we knew we reached rock-bottom when we were trying to trick friends into taking some of junk home with them (see: Pasta Maker). If we didn't do something soon, the production crew for "Hoarders" would be showing up for a taping. All signs pointed towards moving. And it even sounded like a spectacular idea on paper. New sights, new people, new neighborhood to explore, what's not to like? As it turns out, most everything.
I had hoped that being a week removed from the experience would grace me with some perspective and wisdom about moving, but mostly it's just made me kick myself for not getting my act together sooner. I propose that the 28th Amendment makes annual moves mandatory and for the abolition of U-Haul and any other movers. There's nothing like packing/moving/unpacking/realphabetizing 3 boxes of books or cleaning out an entire fridge of perishable goods that expired during the Bush administration to teach you the value of living lightly. I think it was sometime during the 4th geometric permutation of John, Ryan and I navigating my futon down the staircase that I decided I really didn't want it anymore. I didn't really want anything anymore but a freezepop and a PBR. If more people were forced to come to terms with their massive accumulations on a regular basis, I can guarantee there wouldn't be any more centerpieces or throw pillows or ACCOUTREMENT in the world. Moving is like exercise. It is exhausting, it is painful, but it the only way to keep things thin and trim.
I am still unpacking. I am still looking for a bookcase. I stacked my DVDs so perilously high in the living room that everyone who enters should sign a waiver. But you should have seen how much I stowed/threw/gave away. It's as though a giant dresser has been lifted off my shoulders. Oh wait, that's an actual dresser, could you give me a hand with this?