Downtown Developments: Collectors similar to harders on TLC

  • Posted: 3/3/2013 4:25 PM
    6/1/2013 5:57 PM

Hoarding and the people who hoard have become a popular topic and the thing to watch on TLC. These programs show the deplorable conditions hoarders live in, and the pain they go through when they finally try to clear it all out and live "normally."

Evidently, the reason behind most hoarding is psychological; something has gone on in their lives that compel them to save everything they get their hands on from the tiniest scrap of paper to any item they pick up to whatever they can afford to purchase. The hoarding becomes so severe that the people who hoard have almost no place to "be" in their own homes, and the places become infested with bugs and other critters to the point of being dangerously unsanitary.

This show, like most "reality" television these days, satisfies the voyeurism that exist in most of us, but the question to me is, don't we all hoard a bit? I suggest that there is a bit of hoarder in all of us; however, most of us call it collecting.

There is the sports memorabilia collector, the comic book collector, the pig collector and on and on until the collection becomes obsession, then begins to take over every room in the house. I readily admit I am a hoarder of sorts; I hoard food. This has not stemmed from ever going hungry as a child; therefore I can only assume it is for some other reason, but I do it. I save every leftover. It goes in the freezer, sometimes unlabeled because I am so sure I can remember what it is, which never turns out to be the case, then I have to thaw it enough to smell it, and only then, if I don't recognize the smell, I feed it to the critters in the woods. I still have leftovers from Thanksgiving 2011 that I'm sure I will eat some day. I purchase things in the store at times that I might use one day, such as a very expensive bottle of truffle oil or something that is just too good a deal to pass up at the time. Into the freezer it goes, where it is promptly forgotten so that when a recipe calls for it, I go out and purchase it again.

I now have a system. I have a list taped to the doors of cabinets and freezers listing everything inside and mark off as used or added as bought. So far, this is working and no duplicate purchases have been made. The only good thing about hoarding food became evident this week on a trip to the grocery store; meat prices have become outrageously high to the point most of us can not afford even the so-called cheap cuts, but I have an ace in the hole or, should I say, cheaper eats in the freezer. The only thing is by the time I exhaust my supply, I too, will be unable to afford beef.