I am a giant fan of horror movies and the scarier the better. The more I have to scream, fling myself from my theater seat or look through tiny slits in my fingers smashed heavily against my face – the happier I am. A really good horror film will send me home from the movies with a new found terror of my own house. I will search every closet, under every bed, inside every cabinet before concluding that whatever ate whomever in the movie – did not come home with me. I will then say a silent speech to all monsters and freak shows that are possibly still hiding in my house preparing to pounce on me as soon as I turn the lights off and convince them that a better candidate to see them and be scared of them would be a house down the street or better yet – down the country. I usually only watch horror movies at the theater so that I don’t invite Stick Figure Man or Snake Face Girl or Clown Face Boy or Whatever Faced Whatever into my home. But last week – when I should have just enjoyed a day on the couch with nothing to do but watch Ren & Stimpy – I made the mistake of hitting play on a horror movie I may never get out of my head. A movie so terrifying that it has changed me – perhaps forever. The movie was called – “Minimalism” –about people who have chosen to live their lives – wait for it – WITHOUT STUFF. Now the movie was filed under documentary but let’s be very clear here – if a flick about people choosing to live with two pairs of pants, a teapot made from a soup can, a bed that closes into the wall, and shoes made out of cereal boxes isn’t a horror film than I don’t know the genre at all. It seems however, that there is a new movement in this country about how your life might be better – with less. Now I don’t know about you guys but I was taught that less is never a good thing. More is good. More is what we want more of. Nobody wants less of anything – except maybe cancer – and that we have more of than we most definitely need.
The documentary featured a bunch of incredibly interesting people who have made major changes in their lives to live with less and have greatly improved those lives they were living. They had less stuff and connected to life – more. Now, I’ve definitely thought about this where my phone is concerned. I’m far to connected to it for all the wrong reasons and have recently decided to ween myself off of this social media madness I can get wrapped up in. WHY DIDN’T YOU LIKE MY PICTURE OF MY DOG EATING A BONE? WHY ISN’T MY LIFE AS INTERESTING AS HERS? WHY DON’T YOU UNDERSTAND THAT YOU NEED TO SEE A PICTURE OF ME IN A CAT ONESIE? But this one woman in the documentary really freaked me out because she decided to live for an entire month with just thirty three items of clothing. Now that includes – shoes, bags and jewelry. No, I’m not fucking kidding you. She managed to rotate these items for an entire month and said “no one noticed.” Well I say – NO ONE CARES ABOUT YOU CRAZY LADY! She’s clearly A) not a very popular person to begin with or B) Everyone noticed but chose not to say anything you dirty little piglet. And so she took this experiment and extended it to one year. SHE WORE THE SAME 33 ITEMS FOR ONE YEAR!! An icy cold chill just swept up my spine now even thinking about it again and typing the terrible words on the page. What if I had to pick just thirty three items from my wardrobe to wear for one year? I’m wearing nine items right now and I just got out of bed. Plus, I’m already annoyed by these 9 items and don’t plan on wearing them again until next week or maybe – never again. Am I supposed to decide between my pair of below the ankle black leather boots, ankle high black leather boots, knee high black leather boots or thigh high black leather boots? Thats not even possible. I have at least 15 pairs of jeans that I can not live without. Seriously, I hyperventilate whenever i try to thin the herd. And what about my dresses? I mean – I could outfit every single solitary personality that lives within me – three times – and that is quite a number. What if I had to live my life without stuff. I mean – I like my stuff. No – I NEED my stuff. I have made it my lifes mission to become a Maximalist! I’ve worked hard for all the things I don’t even know I have. Yesterday I was in a store desperately searching for some new sweatpants that had a particular kind of bottom. To my extreme sadness – I couldn’t find any anywhere. Then I cleaned out my dresser – and found four pairs. Huh – this less is better situation may be something to look into. My head was spinning like Regan’s in The Exorcist. I mean – I start every single day of my life searching for new stuff on the internet. Every. Single. Day. What can I add to my Amazon wish list now? That pepper shaker shaped like a bulldog is adorbs isn’t it? Those slippers made of yoga mats are an absolute must have – am I wrong? I GOTTA HAVE IT! I GOTTA HAVE EVERYTHING. But what if the stuff we want more of – is what’s giving us cancer? What if all the stress of chasing and finding and getting and buying is what’s making us sick? Now that’s something to ponder in 2017.
For now – I’m just going to clean out my closets and get rid of some things I haven’t worn – or had no idea I even owned – and pare down the STUFF in my life. But I’m not going to do anything crazy. In fact – if you see me in the same pair of pants more than two days in a row – please call someone. I mean – I have standards.