Boxes and Boxes of Paper


Should I throw it out?

We have boxes and boxes of paper.

Notebooks, newspapers, diaries, journals, letters, cards, essays, and college papers.

Do you have this much paper?

There are boxes and file cabinets I haven’t looked at in years.

And so I am looking through them, weeding what I don’t need.  I’ve emptied one drawer of a file cabinet, and must sort through some boxes.

College papers:  I once thought, Yeah, someday I’ll  reread my paper comparing Aeschylus’ Prometheus with Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein and The Six-Million Dollar Man. It is funny and charming, and my prof told me it earned “an unusually high grade for a paper in this class” (and shouldn’t it have been higher?).  He drew a picture of a monster on the back.  I still laugh when I see it, but I don’t want to read it.  Can I possibly throw this out?  No.

IMG_2505_1Catalogues:  I found an old book catalogue,  A Common Reader, July 2003. This charming book catalogue  was in business from 1986-2006, and I still miss it.  There is a whole section called “Oceangoing” in this issue:  The Journals of Captain Cook, Dudley Pope’s Lord Ramage series, and A. J. Mackinnon’s The Unlikely Voyage of Jack de Crow.

IMG_2508_1Post-its.  These free Amazon post-its came with a book I ordered from Amazon maybe a decade ago.   (The note is not from Jeff Bezos:  Don’t be silly!)  My husband wrote, “I love you very much.  You are the best Latin teacher in the house.  Talk to you.”  ( I was the best Latin teacher in the house, and the only Latin teacher in the house.)

Never throw out a piece of paper that says, I love you.

Journal of 11-day bike ride in the 1980s:  Pedal and eat, eat and pedal.  I feel like some sci-fi heroine welded to her zinging, creaky Schwinn machine…

In Pennsylvania the hills are incredible. Sci-fi heroine be damned–I should braid my hair and call myself Heidi…

Am hiding in the tent from packs of killer mosquitos.  The hotel last night was like a refrigerator, but if we turned off the AC there was no ventilation.   The campground is gorgeous, but unfortunately a breeding ground…

Outside a small town in New York, a sign proclaims:  CANDY, A GOOD SOURCE OF ENERGY. 

I can’t throw this journal out.

Postcards.  I found an old Niagara Falls Maid of the Mist postcard.  We once spent an afternoon at Niagara Falls. We rode the Maid of the Mist and wore the blue raincoats, and the boat took us through the mist right up to the falls.

Maid of the Mist

Maid of the Mist

I can’t throw this out.

Newsletter, 2010:  I decided to write my blog as a “print” newsletter in 2010, thinking of some of my ancient relatives.  They said they’d rather read it online, so I never mailed it.  Should I throw it out?

IMG_2509_1Do you have trouble throwing out paper, too?