the year of LIVING UNOFFICIALLY

365 days of celebration

17
May

Pack Rat Day

Posted by Brittany

Pack Rat DayA pack rat is defined as “a person who collects or hoards especially unneeded items.” In extreme cases pack rats may develop problems with compulsive hoarding, which usually results in compromised living conditions and physical and psychological distress. An estimated three million americans suffer from compulsive hoarding pathologies, cluttering their homes, vehicles, yards, and other spaces with worthless and dangerous objects and trash. May 17th is Pack Rat Day, an opportunity for each of us to admit to our own pack rat behaviors and spend one day embracing our clutter. While you’re “busy” not taking out the trash or doing the dishes, assess your own pack-rat-edness and inclinations toward compulsive hoarding — after all, just like the old PSAs said, “knowing is half the battle.”

There is definitely a pack rat living somewhere deep inside my psyche. I’ve tried very hard over the past couple of years (thanks in part to television shows like Hoarders) to rehabilitate my compulsive desires to hang onto items with even the smallest iota of sentimentality. Chris and I have done several sweeps through our basement and junk drawers, but it is a constant battle to make progress. Still, in spite of the need for ongoing efforts, I’m very proud of the job we’ve done and the many trips we’ve made to drop donations off at Goodwill. Now there are really only a few pack rat obstacles we need to overcome — our unending pile of unopened mail, our cluttered shed and garage, the innards of my office/craft room cabinets, a drawer full of CDs I still need to add to my iPhone, and some old furniture and miscellany in our basement (including boxes from certain items, which we mark with a date so we can throw them out after the manufacturer warranty has expired, but always forget to get rid of!). And of course, our frighteningly large stockpile of Bath&BodyWorks candles and shower gel.

But today was not a day for cleaning or organizing — rather, it was a day for embracing the mentality that filled all of the aforementioned areas of our home. We decided to celebrate by indulging my newest hobby and only self-sanctioned form of pack-rattery — couponing.

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