Last year, and for roughly ten prior, I collected material goods as the situation arose. In 2006, I threw them all away. Well, I didn’t exactly throw them all away, though if you were to ask my wife you’d get a different response. My wife and I both took the first week off of the new year to clean house and simplify our lives. My vision of this momentous event was perhaps a little crazy, but impacting nonetheless. I rented the use of a 20 cubic yard roll-off dumpster, which sat ominously in the driveway for the weekend. Balthazar called it the “red boat.” We spent two days throwing a large assortment of household goods into the red boat. Everything from a large couch to bags of dust and old underwear went. I’ve always dreamt of a largish hole directly to the center of the Earth stationed somewhere in my house. Maybe in its own room or something. It would need a large door leading into it so I could throw things like couches into it. This dumpster was a symbol of that dream come true. Unfortunately, the dumpster also took $270.00 with it. However, I was happy to pay almost any amount to be rid of so many years of accumulated garbage and unused trinkets. My major decision point around something’s salvation was whether it had a place or not. No place to store it, trash it. Wrinkled? Trash it. Stinky? Trash it. This goes for clothing and books too. If a page fell out of a book, it got trashed. I realize I could have sold everything in a garage sale, but I also realize this is just another way for us to procrastinate further. And after the sale, what do I do with the rest of the stuff? Sorry – I’ve been through that already. This time it’s for real. The event signifies a change in our lives for the better as well. We are determined to make this change permanent and impacting in our daily lives. We’ll need to analyze purchases for relative usefulness and stop keeping everything. Clothes are the hardest thing. I have a tendency to keep clothing beyond its time. No more! Now I throw away clothing and replace it with new clothing. Do you have any idea what a pile of laundry looks like after 10 years of collection? Well…worse than my pile, but mine is bad all the same. I’d take pictures to show you the garbage, but it’s gone. Taken this afternoon to the big landfill in the sky. It’s bad what I’ve committed against nature in this act, but it’s all the better to drive the message home. STOP WITH THE WASTE!