There has been a new wind that’s been blowing at home. And the wind is about losing flab. In fact, cutting flab dramatically !

Before you say, ‘oh no, not again’, stay with this post. The flab fighting on the body isn’t headed anywhere close to a photo finish. Its a lost cause. A non-starter. Lets move on. The quicker the better.

This post is about the house. The house, you see, has accumulated flab. Over the years. Possessions galore. ‘Possessions galore’ can seem to be a pompous boast of a vain man.

Only here, the possessions that are being talked about are not exactly ones that a wealth manager smile. So.

What would this wealth manager say, if he was shown cupboards of books, files, magazines, folders, paper clippings. etc.

Some dating twenty years. From the days of Narasimha Rao and Ronald Reagan. Old magazines. India Today. Time Magazine. Business Today and the like.

Artifacts picked along the way. Like, the odd stationary bill from a store that’s since been gulped down by a mall that intimidates by the sheer size of its parking lot !

A menu card from a fancy hotel. Flicked to rekindle in an unforeseeable future, the memories of a special evening with special people !

Overhead projector sheets from the first corporate presentation made, which seem today to be almost the time when the dinosaurs hatched their 11the egg.

Discussion notes from organisations organisations who helped pay the bills in an earlier time. Copies of mails. Approvals and such else. Heaps of study material. ‘Extra reading’ printouts . Notes from training programs that have long been forgotten.

Wedding invitations of friends who have now progressed to attend Parent-Teacher meetings and now organise dinners based on the tuition teacher’s calendar !

Bus tickets. Train tickets back home. Travel pamphlets from Bangkok to Bombay. Shimla to Sivakasi ! And beyond !

Books & small artifacts. Some picked specifically as memorabilia. Others accumulated in intense lazy stupour. Of course, each pregnant with a story of its time and place. As the hand ran a cloth to drive the dust away, a million memories got dusted too.

Four racks in the cupboard were emptied with the ferocity of Bruce Lee felling opponents in ‘Enter the Dragon’ ! Strange noises et al ! The remnants of the tearing, throwing and mowing remained on the floor for sometime.

Not very later, gunny bags of the ‘old newspaper’ chap held them. With grimace and glee ! Twenty odd years of accumulation. Carefully clipped newspaper cuttings. Innocently flicked menu cards. Carelessly kept old bills. Study material from a different age. Reviews. Publications. Occupying four racks of the cupboard. Moving along the many houses. City to city.

All gone. It required two trips on a bicycle like this. In a four hour span. They were gone.

We live an age were Google is a verb. Space is a perpetual constraint. Dust beats the Gods in omnipresence. And of course, the daily day offers new possibilities for life and living, much unlike any time before. Perhaps, the nimble mind, without baggage will soak it all up well. So is the case with homes ! That logic beat nostalgia’s seductive presence !

Net result : All gone. You would have expected the missus to have jumped with joy. Happy she was. But, she was a tad upset too.

For all of this yielded her a mega sum of Rs. 129/- ! The care with which these were preserved and the 20 year time stamp on some, seems to have had her imagining something like an inheritance from Bill Gates or someone !

‘Rs.129. Huh’. Was all that was heard.

So much for flab !

22 thoughts on “Flab

  1. Priya says:

    Surprised of the storage. Well we do store the bills for atleast an year and shred those 10 months after an yr and just keep the last two months for some reference.

    Interesting indeed.

  2. G says:

    🙁 you let go? I cannot come to terms with separation of such memorabilia. They seem trivial but bring back a powerful wave of emotions and memories.
    I have my ‘antiques’ stored up in cupboard at my Mom’s place. And everyone at home is warned not to misplace/touch/sell/sort/organise/clean up without my permission and supervision.

  3. nsiyer says:

    Beautifully penned, Kavi. Certain lines like ‘Wedding invitations of friends who have now progressed to attend Parent-Teacher meetings and now organise dinners based on the tuition teacher’s calendar !’. Maha impressed , Kavi, that is what I can say.

  4. The year 2000 cleanup session saw me find bank passbooks from 1951. Some of the balances were in 2 digits. Maybe I should have kept them. Could have taught the current bank a thing or 2, about writing entries.

    And yes, prices of raddi are down.:-)

  5. RGB says:

    I know what u r talking abt. A lot of us tend to do that. I used to have gunny bags, sleeping bags, sacks and lofts filled with such stuff that I found difficult to part with. Finally, I took the decision. It had to go. When we had our house painted, I had to literally clean up and start from scratch! Loved reading ur post 🙂

  6. Neha says:

    you do have a big heart…I have smallest of the thing preserved at mum’s as well as at my place…I have this habit of collecting travel tickets, movie tickets, hotel bills, toll bills, ride tickets, paddle boat ticket and what not…books from 11th till now, so many newspaper articles, roses in diary, etc. lemme stop, or my whole cupboard will fit in ur comment space…

    you indeed have a big heart…and my usual sentences about the post…next time I won’t even write this sentence ok 🙂

  7. Must have been a huge loss – I remember collecting The Hindu Young World Editions from 1990-91 to 2002 or so before finally disposing them during house painting. I still have Reader’s Digests from 1950s to the 90s. Don’t have the heart to dispose them.

  8. Aparna says:

    I let go of my past very easily …there is not a single scrap of useless paper stored in my house. There are a lot of books though, but they are not really flab, are they?
    I remember my school days…my mom would sell the old newspaper and the whatever money she got, she would give it to me to spend. I would look forward to the ‘kabadiwallah’. The money was astronomical. It was close to Rs 50 every time and I used to be ecstatic. Those days are gone…now I just give away the raddi to my maid to sell.

  9. Rush says:

    i thought Raddi was “hot”. Once upon a time…i shared similiar interests…i was a collector, from my barbie dolls first hair brush to my first baggies…fashins changed, the world changed…but my collectors items were artifacts that i was sso crazy abt, i wudnt share it with anyone within the family…leave alone the outside raddiwala.
    and then came along a feng shui expert who happened to share something about negative energy, when things piled up do not allow for free flow of energy. And somehow i wanted to give it a shot…i cleared off my clutter, and i saw some difference….and as years passed, i have grown pretty superstitious abt it….and thanks to all the moving, i have turned my place into a clutter free environment….i bet to see some positive flow happening at ur corner, and it maybe starts with the 129 rupees.

  10. manju says:

    Kavi, these memories in paper are very precious. I know how hard it is to let go of them! But give them up we must, if we are to have any room left in the house to live in.:)

    Great post- reminded me of occasions in the past when I have had to decide to ‘let go’…

  11. Jeevan says:

    Every time I clean my cupboard, I keep stay something even after cleaning and think to check them later and will forget and again when I clean, I would keep them stay… It seems u have saved so much things to recall in memories. Ones in 2-3 months we clean our newspapers rack. The moment we buy, things are worth. Later everything isn’t a matter!

  12. Jeevan says:

    The moment we buy, things are worth. Later everything isn’t a matter!” I mean the newspapers and bills.

  13. Insignia says:

    Oh you bid farewell to all of them?
    I too have this habit of collecting bills, entrance tickets as if they are souvenirs, tissue paper…et all.

    I have it all preserved. After accumulating them for 20 years, it was just worth rs 129, but otherwise its priceless. 🙂

    Nice write up…

  14. Lou says:

    I have moved so many times, there is no flab in my house. I’m not sentimental…everything goes! My husband has to hide his things or I will throw them away;)

  15. Swatantra says:

    Cute!! This is my favorite pass time…

    I sell this and put the money in Siddharth’s Gulak..in festive season it goes to the maid servant..

  16. bodaat says:

    Wow, what great writing Kavi! I loved reading this post. I’m sure that it must have been hard to let go of your treasures – I’m not sure that I could have done it. I hope you use the 4 racks wisely!

  17. oh, I hate clutter…and ufortunately, my place is clutter personified! I would PAY some one to take it all away!!

  18. sujata says:

    I just love to cut flab, every month I just throw off anything that has not been touched in the last fortnight, and invariably the need for it arises the very next day, but I am ruthless. My ruule stands and here disposal is a major issue, we cnnot really throw off books and papers and menu cards, they have to be given away to a proper place that then recycles them, so its a task i do each month with extreme joy!!

  19. Kavi says:

    Priya : Thats quite disciplined. I must say. To shred and all that ! 🙂

    G : yes i did. And i am envious of you and the possibilities. But then, somewhere, i just had to cut it up and soak up the new. Thats the new spirit coursing in me !

    NS Iyer : Thank you sir ! Thank you !

    Ugich Konitari : 1951 ! Phew ! and two digits ! I wonder what the price of Raddi was then !! 🙂

    RGB: I guess all of us have a trigger point. For me, its kind of an ‘auto-detanator’ thats been tipped over after leaning over the edge for what seemed to be an eternity !

    Thanks ! 🙂

    Neha : Well, i guess the space is not as kind as th heart ! 🙂 At this rate of collection, you would need many more cupboards. But with a nice ‘mum’ and living in the same city…things should be ok with you i guess ! 🙂

    Braja : Exactly what i thought. I wonder how happy he was !

    The Accountant : Am not sure of the loss. But yes…a sense of loss prevailed for sometime.

    RD from the 50s must have their own antique value i guess !

    Aparna : How lucky that you are able to let go. I am aspiring to move to that end. having realised thats a much ‘lighter’ way to be.

    Rush : One more reason for me to stay lean ! 🙂 And thats such a positive note that i am beaming. A full 129 ! thank you !

    Manju : yes. You are right. Give them up. We must ! 🙂
    Thank you !

    Jeevan : You are so right. They matter only for the few moments that we buy and the first instances of usage immediately after !

    Insignia : It seemed to be priceless. I guess whats important enough is etched in the heart. And the others are best to let go ! Thats what i think now ! 🙂

    Lets see !

    Lou : What a wonderful attitude to have ! I need to get there. Everything goes ! Hmm !

    Swatantra : Thats a nice idea. Thanks for sharing !

    Bodaat : Thanks for stopping by to comment. I wonder if i can ever comment when such important things are happening in my life as is happening in yours now !

    yes. I hope i use the 4 racks wisely !

    Roshini : Ah. I have company !! 🙂

    Sujata : What a rule ! What a rule ! I wonder if i can put in place something like that. But it is stiff. Once in a fortnight…is something indeed ! Phew !

  20. Suma says:

    sigh.. i have so much paper in the house, the entry tickets to some ‘must visit’ places, brochures…even with all this moving, i have yet not thrown that away!

    great post, kavi!

  21. Priya says:

    You can very well do a scrapbook and keep little things which are cose to your heart. In that way it remains like an album.

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