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Why is your space cluttered?

As with the previous poll, no one except me can see who answered what, and I won't be looking.

Poll #1238316 Why is your space cluttered?

If your space is cluttered, why? If you live in a cluttered space but you are not the person responsible, answer for the person responsible.

The time I spend putting things away and cleaning is not enough to keep up with the mess.
I have too many possessions for my space. If I had more space, my home would be uncluttered.
I have too many possessions for my space. However, I think that if I had more space, my possessions would expand to fill the space.
I am a collector.
I have kids.
I have pets.
I have frequent houseguests.
I am storing other people's possessions.
My physical disabilities make it difficult for me to manage my space.
My hobbies require equipment.
I have a large computer setup and/or an electronics graveyard.
I like clutter. It feels like home.
I am a hoarder or I have hoarding tendencies.
Other (Please explain below.)

What does your clutter consist of?

CDs and other data storage
Household goods
Craft supplies
Sports, camping, or other hobby equipment
SCAdian or LARPing foo, except for costuming
Costuming foo


( 17 comments — Leave a comment )
Aug. 10th, 2008 06:54 pm (UTC)
Proofreader FTW.
Garbage. GaRbage. Arg. Cannot edit poll.
Aug. 11th, 2008 04:35 pm (UTC)
Re: Proofreader FTW.
You know you've been living in Boston too long when...
Aug. 10th, 2008 07:34 pm (UTC)
I think it'd be difficult for most people to admit to being a hoarder in the technical sense. But I could be wrong.
Aug. 10th, 2008 08:08 pm (UTC)
Very true. I added "hoarding tendencies" for that reason, and don't expect to get an accurate count of hoarders. Actually, I don't expect to get an accurate count of any of the reasons people clutter; it's a complicated question that involves a lot of soul-searching, and defensiveness, unconscious motives, and errors of perception are both cause and effect of many cases of cluttering. All this poll can do is tally people's conscious reasons for cluttering.

Also, most people don't know the technical definition of hoarding. They think in terms of the big, dramatic cases, not in terms of the spectrum of behavior involved--rather like assigning a BMI to anorexia instead of focusing on eating habits.

tl;dr I agree. It'll be interesting to see how many people do tick that box.
Aug. 10th, 2008 09:16 pm (UTC)
I consider myself to have "hoarding tendencies" because I have found myself more than once holding something, wavering on getting rid of it, and honestly thinking, "But what if I get rid of it and then I =need= it?" as if the case in which I would require an old ethernet card/pants 8 sizes too small/a slightly discoloured wooden spoon might be life-threatening. It's improved since I noticed that and went "...wtf?" but not as much as it might have if, say, I could actually afford to buy new pants if I =did= somehow end up needing some 8 sizes smaller.

(edit: for some reason I feel obliged to note that by 8 sizes I probably actually mean 4 sizes since they go by twos, but I never really know how to express that.)

Edited at 2008-08-10 09:26 pm (UTC)
Aug. 10th, 2008 09:29 pm (UTC)
Ohhh yes, I hear you on that. Decluttering books tell you to get rid of anything you haven't used for a year because you obviously aren't going to use it ever again, but I've repeatedly been in situations where I was down to the wire and clothes I hadn't worn in ages and wanted to throw out were what saved my cojones.

It's worse when the object cost something when I bought it, or would cost a lot to replace if I ever wanted it again. Especially if I suspect that giving it to Goodwill would mean it was thrown in the dumpster. That's why it's easier for me to give my things away to friends who will reuse them than to try to sell them; knowing they'll be of use > getting back some of the money I put into them.
Aug. 11th, 2008 03:57 pm (UTC)
Decluttering books? But that defeats the longterm project of "building a library". (mostly joking)

Oh- am I terrible at this- I have a goodly number of inherited books I have not, nor will I ever, read.

Aug. 12th, 2008 09:07 am (UTC)
I'm exactly the same. I might one day, years in the future, need that twist tie or thumbtack or three-inch piece of embroidery floss, or... And I'm sentimentally attached to the doodle on the back of that receipt, and the one on the edge of the To Do list, and the ones all over the old maths test...

Every now and then I have moments of clarity and become absolutely ruthless about discarding stuff, but not often. And even if I'm feeling irritated with the clutter and pretty ruthless, I may not have time to deal with it right now, and the mood has passed by the time I do.
Aug. 10th, 2008 08:29 pm (UTC)
You forgot "am lazy as hell." (Kind of included in the first one, I suppose, but I need to be realistic here.)
Aug. 10th, 2008 08:37 pm (UTC)
*grin* Trying not to be judgemental, here.
Aug. 10th, 2008 08:38 pm (UTC)
If you consider yourself lazy, what do you think feeds into that?
Aug. 10th, 2008 09:28 pm (UTC)
I do not value cleanliness enough to be worth the constant effort of cleaning.

I mean, if a thing is, like... bacterial, clean that shit, but if it's just stuff lying around, that's cool. Plus it's like a filing system! Stuff that gets used more often is easier to access.
Aug. 11th, 2008 03:55 pm (UTC)
"it's like a filing system!"

This is why Sherlock Holmes always got mad if the housekeeper dusted. The depth of dust was part of his filing algorithm.
Aug. 12th, 2008 09:10 am (UTC)
do not value cleanliness enough to be worth the constant effort

Yes! I have had many people say or imply that they don't necessarily like to clean, but find the results satisfying -- an accomplishment.

I don't get that. I cleaned; I can see the floor; next week it will be gone again. What was the point? (I stopped making my bed the minute I moved out of my parents' house; talk about a truly pointless task!)
Aug. 11th, 2008 03:19 pm (UTC)
Interesting. Why do you ask?

I have really mixed feelings about my answers, I mean I *think* that if I had enough space I wouldn't have so cluttered a house, and while that is partially true (my bedroom is currently full of boxes) I do wonder, If I had more space, would I fill it with more things? I expect I might. It took me almost no time to spread into the second bedroom in out apartment as soon as it came available, and it didn't really make the rest of the apartment much less cluttered.

I have not looked up hoarding tendencies, but I do know I have a very hard time throwing things out- especially "ancestral" stuff, and stuff that still works well (like old computers) but that I don't use anymore. I am hoping maybe freecycle will help me with my "problem." I am fine with "giving something a new home" instead of throwing it away, it doesn't feel like wasting thing, but like helping other people.
Aug. 11th, 2008 03:56 pm (UTC)
I didn't check "hoarding tendencies", because I think I've got myself down to a 2 or 3 on a ten-point scale. I've been as high as a 6 in my life.
Jun. 19th, 2010 02:58 am (UTC)
Ouch. That's all.
Except maybe Yes.
( 17 comments — Leave a comment )

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