Golden, Yet Wiser, Guy's Perspective On Stuff


Springboro's Guy Pasvogel, published author, shares his thoughts

Got stuff? Of course, you have stuff. Everybody has stuff. In fact, some of us have so much stuff that we have to rent a Store-N-Lock to store our excess stuff, or we call up Vietnam Veterans to pick up unwanted stuff. 

If Vietnam Veterans does not want our excess stuff, we can drop our stuff off at Goodwill. Then, while at Goodwill, we can get a great bargain on other people’s unwanted stuff. Now, we have more stuff!

Let’s face it, stuff happens! 

Over the years, we have accumulated many items, that at the time, we just had to have and could not do without. Those items just sit and collect dust, cluttering the house we live in. Then, one day the light bulb goes off in our brain that it is time to minimalize.

For example, every day as I enter my closet, I see a vast wardrobe collection just begging me to put it on that day. Some shirts, pants and sweaters have been hanging there for upwards of twenty years. Some pants do not even fit me anymore. I do, however, have my favorite shirt and slack or jeans that get worn every week.

When sorting out my closet stuff, I find that the old clothes that still fit and are not out of fashion are made better than the new merchandise I have purchased recently. Clothing that is 100% cotton is hard to findat the stores today, replaced by polyester and cotton blends that do  not breathe. Made in the U.S.A. has been replaced by made in China (like the little birdie says, “Cheap, cheap, cheap”).

What about that bowling trophy that I won ten years ago or that baseball glove that served me well during my past softball years? And then there is that set of china that I bought in Japan fifty years ago while in the Navy? We haven’t used that set since Thanksgiving Day 2005. By the way, my significant other knows who that fine china was bought for, and it wasn’t her.

Some people decide to have a garage sale to get rid of their stuff. However, don’t expect to make a killing off of your excess stuff. Shoppers are out to get a bargain by buying other people’s stuff for pennies on the dollar.

Sometimes it is better to just put your stuff out on the curb on garbage day. Scavengers patrol the neighborhood to get freebie good stuff. (Maybe for THEIR garage sale to make pennies on no dollars.)

I am reminded of the time I scarfed up a set of old used golf clubs on garbage day, only to never use them and return the clubs to the curb two years later.

One time I retired my old weed whacker (that worked perfectly by the way) to buy a newer model. I put it on the curb a day before garbage day. A younger gentleman came knocking on my door asking us how much we wanted for the whacker. He was tickled to death when we told him it was free. The same thing happened when we put out a brand new garbage bin and a passerby asked us the price.

Then, there is the fine line between “stuffers” and “hoarders.” People that have a lot of excess stuff know when it is time to unload said stuff. When people buy more stuff, do not know when to stop buying more stuff and do not get rid of their excess stuff… they become hoarders. They now have a disease called Hoarder’s Disorder.

Hoarders are easy to spot. Just drive through your neighborhood and you might find a house that has 200 cats, twenty old clunkers in the driveway, 200 plants stuffed into a two bedroom apartment or just about anything of no value sitting on the porch.

Last year, I bought a new baby crib for $75 on Market Place. When I went to pick it up, I came to a residential house that had more merchandise than Walmart. He was selling new bikes, furniture, appliances, and yard equipment out of his house. (Actually, I would call it a ware-house). I am glad I do not live next to him.

After writing this article, I have finally decided that minimizing my “stuff” intake would be in my best interest. Before I buy something new now, I ask myself this question…do I really NEED this item, or do I just want it?

Some last thoughts about decluttering…start small and do not do it all at once. Set goals. Separate items into categories such as keep donate or throw out. Ask yourself, “Does this item add value to my life?”

By minimizing and decluttering your living space, you might find that your life will be less stressful and more organized. You will be shedding the excess baggage associated with the items you discard. It will free your mind and allow you to concentrate on the issues and items that are the most meaningful to you.

Good Luck un-stuffing!

About Guy Pasvogel

Guy Pasvogel has published two books: Wiser Guy  and Reflections of a Golden Guy. “My writings are definitely satire. I like to call them 'Andy Rooneyish,'” Pasvogel said, adding that he hopes his readers not only find them entertaining, but thought provoking. To purchase one or both of Guy’s books contact him at

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