Every few months, I go through a phase where I can’t stop talking about something I’ve seen, read or watched. My friends will likely remember my Butler phase, when I managed to end every conversation with: “But have you seen The Butler?” (But seriously, have you? You should.)
My current obsession is Marie Kondo’s The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up: The Japanese Art of Organizing and Decluttering.
If you haven’t heard about it, the gist is this: declutter your house by touching every single item you own. If it “sparks joy,” keep it. If not, toss it. By keeping only what you absolutely love (or absolutely need), you turn your home into a haven of clean, positive energy.
Now, as an unapologetic Kombucha, Gluten Free and Essential Oils Bandwagon Board Member, I was of course intrigued by this crunchy new trend. Particularly the part about picturing your endgame – your new joy-sparked self. This is a critical part of the process, Kondo says. If you’re to truly transform yourself and your space, you must first “visualize your destination.”
After reading this, I did indeed have a vision. Nothing fully formed, just passing glimpses of what could be. I saw silk everywhere – silk robes, silk loungewear, silk sheets for my night sweats. I saw wine. Red wine, of course. Giant goblets of it. I saw warm, dim light. And a record player, slowly spinning a very important and very cool jazz record (don’t ask me which – you couldn’t possibly know it).
And then I knew.
My joy-sparked self was a softcore porn star.
“Life-changing magic,” indeed.
Obviously this did not prove true. Transformative as tidying may be, being a hypochondriac germophobe with an irrational fear of conception, I am in fact the least likely person to dabble in porn. That, and of course the issue with my face. Put me in front of a camera for five minutes, and rest assured, the only thing that’s comin’ is the Dark Lord.
But enough about me and my porn.
The first place I tidied was my closet. In doing so, I found a few relics that had managed to evade my previous purges. A denim body condom (presumably my 20th birthday dress), a slew of spray-tanning mitts, The “Up in Smoke Tour” DVD, a gold sequin miniskirt and an aromatherapeutic raccoon on a leash.
Per the KonMari Method, before tossing an item into the discard pile, I held it and thanked it for its service.
“Thank you for the memories,” I whispered into my gold, impossibly mini miniskirt. I gave the remaining sequins one last stroke, smiling as I remembered all the good times and rashes they’d given me. As I imagine most sequin garments do, that sliver of skirt had seen a lot. Too much, one might argue. But it seemed a fitting cap to my discard pile. A glittering tribute to a past self I’d outgrown – in every sense of the word.
Several days and Goodwill runs later, I’d successfully KonMari’d the shit out of my entire apartment. Was it hard? Absolutely. Transformative? Who knows. But worth it? Without a doubt. My apartment feels cleaner, brighter. I can finally brag about being a minimalist and if nothing else, I found my social security card.