Tag Archives: collecting

It’s spreading like a virus.

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A fungus is currently taking over Casa River and it’s all I can do not to scream.

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It multiplies.

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It jumps from room to room…

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It’s covering every empty space and driving me crazy…

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But I’m not saying a word.

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I’m not nagging, I’m not bitching (out loud) because something miraculous has happened. I’m not sure I should even mention it lest I pierce the magic veil from whence it came… but here goes.

My husband… hoarder extraordinaire, the man who never saw a piece of junk he didn’t want to own… said he wants to sell some of his useless crap treasure at a flea market! Believe me when I tell you I almost passed out from the shock.

When … or even if …. this unheard of event will take place is anyones’s guess. But I’m doing my best to keep quiet and tiptoe around the plethora of rubbish that’s being vomited up from the cellar. If there’s the slightest chance some of it could disappear, it’s the least I can do.

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So close.

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If you’ve ever collected stamps you know what an utter nightmare it can be to determine value. There are so many variables…. color, condition, perforation count etc.

My husband never had any interest in philately until both my aunt and his uncle dumped huge collections on him a decade ago. Numerous dusty boxes and files and books cluttered our office for months as he attempted to sort, categorize and value those stamps. I tried to help, and was interested in the history…. up to a point.

The point when my husband would come running in the kitchen waving a tweezered stamp in the air like a maniac. He’d have a big smile on his face, his body positively trembling with enthusiasm. Said stamp would be shoved in my face and I would be asked, ” Is this red… or magenta?” His anticipation was palpable. Think Howard Carter about to open Tut’s tomb.

Over and over again this would happen. “Red or magenta?” “Yellow or chartreuse?” “Blue or aquamarine?” And over and over again I would correctly name the color…. I am an artist’s daughter after all…. and my husband would be crestfallen. Desolate. Disappointed beyond measure because while the red, yellow and blue stamps were common and usually worth .20- .75 cents, the magenta, chartreuse and aquamarine could be worth thousands.

Needless to say he never found the 1856 magenta British Guiana 1c ( most expensive stamp ever sold, $9.48 million ) or the the 1918 U.S. inverted Jenny… a favorite among collectors for obvious reasons.

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(That little oopsie goes for a million plus.)

But hope springs eternal, he knew he’d find a winner. And every time I’d identify the color that lost him $30,000? He’d get mad… at me! Like it was my fault lilac is not aubergine. After months of painful searching, the stamps went back in their boxes and eventually back in the cellar. Until now.

Now they’re floating back up to the living space with the rest of the crap treasure he’s been sorting through… and once again I’m called upon to be the bad guy.

Yesterday he was smiling ear to ear. He’d found a $5,000 stamp!

And while he did have a 1926 2K Czech Hradcany, what he didn’t have was the rare watermark that makes it valuable.

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And naturally, I was the evil witch who pointed it out.

He didn’t speak to me for 2 hours.

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Be careful what you wish for.

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It’s long been a dream of mine to see … no, not Istanbul or Rome, I’m a simple girl. I only want to see the cellar floor again.

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When we moved into this house 20 years ago we had a gloriously empty 2,000 square foot basement… and I had visions of carefully organized storage shelves so our closets would never burst open again. Sadly this never came to fruition because my husband filled it to the brim with crap, clutter, things he didn’t need and will never use stuff in no time flat. And when I say filled, I mean up to the rafters with barely a path from front to rear. I haven’t seen the floor in years.

So when the husband retired a few months ago and had lots of spare time on his hands, I did what any thoughtful wife would do and subtly suggested now would be a good time to go through his mess, useless junk, rubble treasure once and for all.

But as my title says, I should have been careful what I wished for. Because as I suggested, my husband started sifting though his massive piles of detritus below ground.

The problem is…. it all began to float upstairs.

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Now? There’s a World War II poster/map on my den reading chair.

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There are railroad cars on my kitchen counter.

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There are boxes, bags and assorted dreck on my office floor.

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As well as stamps and a broken clock on my auxiliary desk. So basically, it’s everywhere… and I fear for the future of our living space.

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Because if all that makes it’s way upstairs? I may end up sleeping on that newly cleared cellar floor.

🥴

Ka-Ching!

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The husband and I were on our way home from the grocery store the other day when he spotted an antique store he’d never been in. I wondered how that was even possible, but hey… it happens.

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When we walked in, I turned right and he turned left. It wasn’t long before I heard him haggling with the owner so I hightailed it over before things got serious.

Old cash registers. Fancy ones I grant you….

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But with a price tag of $2,500? I gave the husband the evil eye.

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And with a $4,500 price tag on this one?

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I was positively pulling him out of the store.

It was fabulous. But not that fabulous.

😳

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They could be twins.

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When it comes to collecting crap stuff, my husband is the epitome of the phrase ‘the thrill is in the hunt’.

He’ll tirelessly scour flea markets and antique stores for that just right piece of crap treasure….. but once he owns it? It will languish in the closet or be left in a deserted corner to gather cobwebs.

And now?

His cat is displaying the same traits.

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Yes, that’s a half dead mouse.

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And just like his father….

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After he hunts it down, Lord Dudley Mountcatten could care less what becomes of it.

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So many glasses.

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When we travel and drink, the husband likes to get a glass from the bars and restaurants he’s enjoyed. Since we used to do this quite often… we’ve amassed a large collection of glasses. Some of them are in the house but most of them have migrated out to the barn. And though we’ve stuffed the freezer compartment of the beer fridge with frosty ready to fill receptacles….

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There was still a large portion waiting for a home.

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And a whole lotta paper destined for the fireplace.

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Sadly the husband’s aborted little two foot shelves don’t offer much useable space.

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And once the double tap kegerator is installed things will be even tighter.

Roy Scheider was right.

We should have built a bigger bar.

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Let’s play….

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Because it’s been a long week and I need a chuckle.

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I’d like to tell you there’s something wonderfully quirky up there like a hedgehog cheese grater…

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Or sandwich bags that lessen the chances of your kid getting beaten up for their PB&J….

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But alas, when I climbed up on a chair and checked?

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All I saw was this:

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A lone fly swatter the husband must have thrown up there when I wasn’t looking.

Handy if Mike Pence drops by, but otherwise not very amusing.

So regale me with your finds…

What’s collecting dust in your kitchen?

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