by Joe Buonfiglio
I am a hoarder.
Well, sort of. Maybe not in the traditional sense, strictly speaking. My kitchen isn’t overflowing with old Tupperware containers stuffed with various cereals from back when they still thought sugar was good for you and cereal companies still gave away decoder rings in exchange for box tops. My hallways are not lined with bags full of my feces I need just in case I might someday make that killing on the black market for the stuff when the world comes to its senses and recognizes its true value. My living room isn’t stacked with 30-year-old newspapers and magazines the paramedics have no hope of finding their way around to save my life when I eventually fall prey to the rat-infested decay of my peculiar collectibles.
No, the problem zone of my accumulating nightmare is my beloved workspace, my Muse cave, my writer’s den, my office. That is Ground Zero for my hoarding activities.
See, I’m what one might refer to as an “ideas hoarder.” Afraid of losing an idea — ANY idea — for a story, a script, a newspaper or magazine article and hell, even for a tweet, I incessantly reach for a Post-it note, scratch-pad, napkin, paper out of the printer or the fax machine (Shut up. Yes, I still have a fax machine.) on which to scribble down any idea that even has the slightest of chances making it into some future project or paper.
Why not use less cumbersome means of creativity-data storage in this delightfully digital age of ours?
I do. Just ask my byte-busting memo app between the droplets of cyber-tears it cries on a regular basis due to my jamming it beyond capacity as if a titmouse being fucked by a bull elephant. Believe me, it won’t stop the grab for paper and pencil I make each time some tidbit of absurdly inane mental trivia pops into my brain.
Thus, little by little over time, the mountain of suffocating paperwork piles into every corner and crevice of my cherished literary headquarters. As my creative command center becomes overwhelmingly inundated with paper, my besieged office renders me an outcast; my own family viewing me as a pariah, an “untouchable” in both body and spirit due to my vocational environment. To chants of “Jesus, I can’t even find a place to sit down,” they shun me and leave me for dead in the sea of composting parchment on which I’ve gathered my crumbling assortment of potential puns, jokes and plotlines.
I am a literary leper, as my idea-hoarding ways become the satanic gateway to my shameful self-destruction.
“It’s a goddamn fire hazard!” the wife decries. “Clean this shit up before they raise our insurance rates.”
To make matters worse and, as proverbial — and in this case, quite possibly literal — insult to injury demands, my Jenga towers of ideas are so tall and run so deep, I no longer even have a clue as to what lies within them. Through my own well-intentioned devices, I have actually lost that which I was so desperate to keep readily accessible. In other words, I don’t know what’s where anymore.
Irony is a cruel mistress.
I’m sure someday I’ll get it all organized, all cleaned to the once-pristine desk view that is now but a distant memory. Perhaps in the attainable future, I will be able to reclaim the—
Shit! This would make a great idea for a blog post. I gotta write this down!
Where’s my notepad?
I know it’s here.
© 2015 Joseph P. Buonfiglio All Rights Reserved.
All photos © 2015 Joseph P. Buonfiglio with All Rights Reserved.