Thursday, September 14, 2006

top ten things i should throw away but haven't yet

10. Free promotional waterproof cigarette pack case

I used to smoke Parliament Menthol Lights. I haven't smoked that brand in years, but they want me back as a consumer, so the company sends me unusual promotional items often. This one was sent a few years ago and I have yet to use it. I rarely go to the beach because honestly if I wanted to catch a disease, Lake Erie isn't the entity that I want to catch one from. I really have no use for this thing. And even if I lived along an ocean somewhere, I probably would forget that I had this useless item. And with my luck, I'd drop my pack in the water anyhow. I usually find things like this in the middle of the Winter.

9. Namebadge from an old job

I don't know why I keep this in my drawer. I haven't worked there in five years and I have no intention of ever going back. Maybe somewhere in my subconscious I'm thinking it may be useful for a future Halloween costume or for some sort of fictional grand heist (the hotel is right next to and connected to a very large bank downtown). Yeah, probably neither. Maybe I keep it around as some sort of reminder that I used to work an actual bona fide j-o-b, instead of all these crazy occasional one-off odd jobs.

8. Old Farmer's Almanac from the year 2000

I guess I should save this just for the whole Y2K/Millenium thing, but I haven't read it, never looked through it, and honestly I didn't even realize it was on my shelf until I was looking around today for items for this post. I think most of its usefulness wore off somewhere between December 31st, 2000 and January 1st, 2001. Now that I've actually flipped through it, I guess it does have some great gardening tips. I am such a pack rat, it's not even funny. Or maybe I'm just conscious of the environment and don't want to contribute to the growing landfills. Yeah, that's it.

7. The Remote Control to nothing

I found this remote control. I have a bunch of these that I have absolutely no idea what appliances they control. A television that doesn't work anymore? A radio that I lost? A VCR that I gave away? I dunno, but I can't throw it away. What if I find the appliance and then realize in horror that I got rid of this remote control? I must keep it... with all the other remote controls to all the other nothings. With my luck if I got rid of this and then found the matching appliance, I'd find out that they discontinued this model of remote control and then I'd actually have to get up and manually adjust whatever it belongs with. Me=lazy. That's not gonna happen.

6. 8-track cassette tapes that are broken

Okay, even if the actual magnetic tapes weren't broken, I still couldn't listen to any of these gems. I haven't owned an 8-track cassette player since the early 80s when we all replaced them with the more standard cassette tapes which we've recently replaced with compact discs and now mp3 players and ipods. But I can't throw these jewels of nostalgia away. The album covers look a lot more interesting on these stickers than on the smaller cassette tapes, although not as awesome as actual vinyl record LPs, of which I have thousands. Yeah, I'm gonna hold onto these.

5. Las Vegas casino jackpot cardboard promo

Okay, so when I was in Las Vegas this past May, I was really drunk and I maybe sort of klepto-ed this stupid piece of cardboard off a slot machine. I think half of me just wanted to test the casino security in my drunken haze. I expected a bunch of burly guys with dark shades and those curly radio earpiece thingies like the Secret Service wears or like the bad guys in the Matrix movies to jump out of nowhere and arrest me, but in correllation to my overall Vegas experience: no such luck. Maybe I can use it as a coaster if I ever get a really big mug. Actually, they're tearing down the current Stardust Casino soon to make way for a bigger, better, newer version in typical neo-Vegas-casino style... so maybe I can sell it on eBay as a nostalgia item 40 years from now. Yeah, I better keep it.

4. Some sort of art thing my friend made out of paper

I have lots of paper and many scissors randomly scattered throughout my house. You always want to have scissors handy. I don't know why, but you just should have them handy. My friend Tony was over a few months ago and I guess he was bored and feeling creative, so he cut out some sort of snowflake thingy and folded it and cut it some more and taped it together and now it exists as that thing in the picture. I'd throw it away but I think it may be some sort of voodoo thing and so I'm just gonna leave it alone so that the voodoo paper dieties don't punish me and unleash their voodoo paper wrath on me while I sleep. Who wants to wake up with papercuts? They hurt really bad.

3. Poster of Benji from the 70s

I buy a lot of vinyl records. I buy new ones and old ones. Sometimes I buy a bunch of those really cheap ones at thrift stores. Sometimes people give me their old ones. And rarely I find a crate or two in someone's garbage. Well, when I lived in Chicago, I came across two crates of old LPs that someone had abandoned in the alley near my apartment. While going through them I found this folded up poster of Benji from the 1970s stuck between the protective sleeve and the record jacket. I'd throw it away, but dammitall if Benji isn't just the cutest pooch! And as a bonus on the back of the poster, some 70s gal wrote this lovely and heartwarming inscription in cursive:
"I Kelly here by grant thy Jackie to finger her self." You silly 70s highschool girls, you! Uh, huh... how classic is that?! So even though either Kelly or Jackie cut the corners of this poster (when it was folded... who does that?) that was obviously a free insert to Tiger Beat or Teen Beat or whatever, I think I better save it... you know, for anthropological reasons.

2. Foam cushion thingy from broken headphones

I've been DJing for almost a decade and a half, and in that time I've gone through lots of expensive headphones. I'm a little clumsy to put it bluntly and I've never had much luck with any sort of mechanical or electronic devices. Headphones are no exception. I'm not sure why I have this, but I save it. Who knows... maybe I'll wake up in the middle of the night sometime and invent something and to make that something I'll need a squishy, slightly curved, black piece of foam. It could happen. Or maybe a future set of headphones will break and I'll lose the foam part and I can replace the missing item with this. Yeah, I better save this.

1. Corrective tape dispenser

Ah, the typewriter. Who can forget the blisters on each index finger from tapping away at the big clunky hard-to-press keys, and that great sound when you push that thingy after each line was typed...ending in a little bell sound? Those were the days that I never want to go back to. After the agony of typing a ten page term paper with an oldschool typewriter, I say, "long live the word processor!" So why do I have a dispenser of typewriter correction tape? I guess it would have come in handy had I found a mistake on a school assignment on the way to class and running to the nearest computer lab before the start of class was not a possibility. Maybe it will be a collector's item someday and I can sell it on eBay. Yeah, I better save it.


  1. A water proof cigarette pack holder. . .that is almost enough to make me want to start smoking again!

  2. I laughed several times while reading this post, but my favorite has to be "Derek, Night Auditor"
    sounds like a cheesy porno detective movie to me.

    Oh and they're tearing down the Stardust?!? Is NOTHING sacred? (ha -- yes, I was in the stardust once...they can tear it down... so long as they leave the Luxor alone, I'm happy)

  3. I guess I prefer the original Ocean's Eleven to the remake, and so that's what I expected Vegas to be more like before I actually made it out there. Again, no such luck. I had more fun at Frontier and Stardust than at the supersleek casinos, although maybe I just I wish I had enough money to actually stay in the Bellagio and Caesar's Palace for more than just a walk-through. There's a bartender named Mike at Frontier that's worked there for years that was the coolest person we met on our work trip-slash-pseudovacation.

    Morgen, regarding "Derek, Night Auditor," hate to disappoint you, but I have no such scandalous stories to provide. Six phones constantly ringing off the hook all night long for towels, wake-up calls, info on local restaurants and taxis to the airport is enough to drive anyone to the brink of madness.

  4. This is the best blog! I finally unloaded most of my random garbage this year in a blitzkrieg of trips to salvation army and the trash. I still have the 2000 millenial issue of the weekly world news, the 'music to help you stop smoking' record album (brilliant, because it's never opened and is nicotine stained) and multiple cans of vintage scotch guard. Hey, they keep threatening to make it illegal, so I HAVE to keep a stash. Also Derek, I have some tapes that you made for me, but those aren't trash, they're treasures...even though I haven't had a cassette player in years!