Clutter

this kind of thing is my bag, baby.

Well, I wasn’t going to do an entry at all, and then Friends was some sort of “Best of” episode with clips of old shows, and I hate that, so here I am.

And then I just can’t sit through any more of Thursday night’s lineup until ER, which I’ll probably miss tonight because I’m going to do my Get Real recap.

Every day I carry around this bag, and inside this bag is a whole bunch of stuff I never use. I forget to clean it out and then things just stick around inside it forever. And the second I do clean it out I instantly need whatever it was I just removed the day before.

I’ve gone through a series of shoulder bags over the years, trying to find the right combination of “too big” and “cute and small.” I rarely get it right. The first bag I had was an old army knapsack. It was really smelly and the straps kept breaking. It looked cool in a coffee shop, but not so much on a dinner date. My second bag was a gift from Eric. It was just one big pouch. I could never find anything in there, and it would constantly dump over and everything would fall out of it. Everywhere.

The bag after that, my Gap bag, was nice, but the seven different pockets (including the cell phone pocket) meant that I was always searching, searching, searching for things and rarely found what I was looking for.

I recently switched to a shoulder bag with one inside smaller pocket. It fits my iBook and my extra stuff. I figured I had found just what I was looking for. But today, as I look over at my bag and see things falling out of it, I realize that perhaps it’s not the bags in my life, but the things I carry around for security that are weighing down my lifestyle.

Things in my bag

  • One iBook. Blue. Needed to write recap this evening. Cannot do without. Carry every single day.
  • One iBook power adapter. Needed for late-night writing session that will now go on even later because I came home, took a nap, ate dinner and then watched Friends before starting this entry.
  • One digital camera and USB adapter. Brought into work for a project that didn’t end up happening today. Will have to take into work again tomorrow.
  • One paycheck stub. Unopened. I just got this today, so it’s not that bad.
  • One paycheck stub. Opened. I just haven’t gotten around to my bills box lately.
  • One cover for a Handspring. I don’t like this leather cover, but I carry it because one day I might want to use it.
  • Wallet. Black. Holds license, credit card and fifty receipts, as this year I’m trying to save all of them and be a good actor/tax filer and get my money back this year like stee.
  • One Mead Composition notebook. I carry a notebook with me at all times, like a good little writer/comic.
  • Inside the Mead Composition notebook:
    • List of rules for the Children’s Museum. Needed every Sunday.
    • Printed e-mail on new site ideas and contracts.
    • One blank envelope addressed to AT&T.
    • One bill from Network Solutions.
    • An empty envelope from Wing Chun.
    • A birthday card envelope with a bill from AT&T jammed into it.
    • Blank invoices for the Children’s Museum.
    • A credit card bill. Unpaid.
    • An empty envelope that used to hold a paycheck from the Austin American-Statesman.
    • One opened paycheck envelope with stub. (I have seven jobs, okay?)
    • Currently: one Taylor, napping inside the open notebook.
    • An empty envelope addressed to me with no return address.
    • Another open paycheck stub.
  • One pack of Marlboro Lights. One cigarette inside.
  • Two empty gum wrappers.
  • One book of stamps with four remaining stamps.
  • A Handspring.
  • A business card for someone else.
  • Another empty gum wrapper.
  • One red lighter.
  • One stick of gum wrapped in aluminum foil.
  • One blue pen. Ballpoint.
  • One book of stamps with ten remaining stamps.
  • One package of Birth Control Pills.
  • One pair of sunglasses.
  • One ripped napkin with instructions for signing up on the Austin comic mailing list.
  • One paycheck stub from ADVfilms.
  • One business card from eye doctor.
  • One airline ticket stub from trip to Aspen.
  • One package of Midol. Two remaining capsules.
  • One Albuterol inhaler.
  • One book of checks.
  • One mirror from smileandactnice.com
  • One scribbled piece of notebook paper. It simply says, “People’s impulses to read things on a screen in front of them.” I think I was having a “moment.”
  • One stub from the Bobby Slayton show in Aspen.
  • One ATM receipt. Deposit.
  • One leopard-print Pochacco wallet. Contains business cards and insurance information. Also contains college ID for club discounts.
  • One shiny business card holder.
  • One bottle of eye drops.
  • One keychain for emusic.com, still inside plastic wrap.
  • One gum wrapper.
  • Two tampons. Wrapped.
  • One piece of aluminum foil.
  • One bottle of eye drops. Medicated.
  • One pack of American Spirits. From SXSW. Two cigarettes inside.
  • One ATM receipt. Withdrawl.
  • Three empty gum wrappers.
  • One penny. 1986.
  • One CD holder. For work. Contains:

And every six months or so I go through this big “I must change my bag and everything in it” evening, and then I spend the next week or so putting things back in my bag that I needed that I removed because I decided I didn’t really need them anymore.

And now I’m really late getting started on this recap thing, so I’ve got to go. I’ve got much work to do and I’m surrounded in all of my things. I’m like Mary Poppins with this bag, here.

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