Wednesday, January 16, 2013

Filing a Life

Two weeks into the new year the mess in my work space has reached critical mass. If I don't do something soon an archeologist of the future may find me buried in layers of my own history. I can't write or draw or even pay bills in the middle of this chaos.

I set aside all day Monday to sort through papers, photographs, drawings, art supplies, books, newspapers, letters, files, and too many useless treasures. I look at the piles of like items littering every inch of the floor and wonder how to implement a method of organization. File cabinets, drawers, and shelves are already full.

Several inches of file space free up when I decide to recycle documents related to my job with Right Brain last year. Although I'm not ready to trash the whole experience, a large quantity of paper can go to the blue bin by the curb.

I take out a box of old file folders emptied when I cleaned out my father's shop. The labels handwritten in pencil are easy to erase. Files marked "Hand Tools," "Joiner," and "Rotted Wood Turning" are changed to "Writing Notes," "Banner Project," and "Family Research."

I wonder - how long will it be until my children empty the contents of these file folders into a recycling bin and erase my handwritten labels? Maybe it doesn't matter as long as I don't die unhappy and alone like my father with a file cabinet full of unfulfilled dreams.


  1. ooooh ML thank you for this posting. I also struggle with the whole reached critical mass in creativity space thing: papers, cloth projects, painting, photography, collage, printmaking, writing, all jumbling and I am frozen in immobility when I do have free time because there is too much potential. I know I need to focus, select, to chose one project but I stir the cauldron and stir the cauldron. I make to-lists and that helps me begin to get a map, direction. I plan to focus on one area at a time. As an aside the war on clutter in my life - especially paper - is ongoing. Then I am distracted by something and my whole focus falls apart and I step over it for a while in pursuit of the next thing...... I recently saw some online images of spider webs when the spinners had (allegedly) been given different drugs. The random result of a web spun whilst under influence of caffeine seemed to depict where I sometimes feel I am - even though I am not a heavy caffeine user. (BTW: I don't know whether those "tests" on spiders were real or urban legend - but the idea of being thrown off centre and not achieving much resonated) . Thank you too for the reminder to try to FULFIL dreams rather than file them in a cabinet

  2. Yes, stirring the cauldron. If life isn't already chaotic enough, I can stir it up and push it over the edge. Creativity is messy.