Saturday, January 12, 2008


For some reason, I am fascinated with hoarders. I recently spent an hour reading about hoarding online. Reading these stories makes me wonder about my tenuous hold on sanity. I mean, I am clearly on the spectrum of full-scale hoarding. Consider the evidence:

  • I hold onto newspapers because I plan to read them.
  • I have little scraps of paper that are important to me.
  • If you ask me where something is in my chaos, I can find it with no problem (ASSUMING NO ONE ELSE MOVED IT).
  • I hate it when people mess with my useless bits of stuff, or hassle me about them.

On the other hand, my house is delightful and friendly! You can see the floors in several places! No, we don’t have a basement, why do you ask? What’s that? Our house has outside windows near the ground? No, no, that’s a design flaw. No basement here.

But seriously, the off-site storage industry is growing massively. I don’t understand the appeal of renting extra space indefinitely, but clearly there’s a market. It’s particularly perplexing since the average square footage of American houses is very generous. In 2002, the median square footage for homes occupied by middle income households was 1,700 sq. ft. (cite)

Enjoyable reading on historic hoarding at its most extreme: the Collyer brothers. What a way to go.

If you, too, can’t get enough hoarding info or need actual help:

Squalor Survivors
Children of Hoarders

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