Collecting habits, my gateway to destruction – Entry for 1/15/14


Word of the day: Sirvente.
N. a kind of satirical song of the medieval troubadours, usually about the faults and vices of society.

I had opened a old dictionary, ‘The World Book Dictionary’ Volume two L-Z. I love old books, leathery, gold embellished, the smell slightly like a pencil but not heavily of graphite; Vintage 1971. Randomly I came across the word Sirvente and thought of my father. I haven’t mentioned him on this *Blog because I simply want to deny his influence; its heavy and the reason for why I’m such a emotional person. My father was a wreck of a human being; for me to go into his story would be lengthy and although I control what is written here I don’t want to honor his past – but to not do so partway would be a game of denial and blame.

He use to sing. My father had an amazing voice; his father was some kind of singer in Trinidad. I never learned about his family because he didn’t want me to know and anytime I did show interest he would become unstable triggering violence. He would sing about everything. These weren’t songs on the radio that famous people recorded. Not tracks off the hitlist; a pun that doesn’t need explanation. He would sing about the things he hated, his repression, his hate for me, my mother, something I had failed to do – he was generally unstable and it didn’t take much to trigger him.

This lack of care about my wellbeing, I don’t know where the idea came from. I knew my mother loved me but she didn’t do enough since she loved my father too but felt more pity for him I feel. This lack, the hole, a need, a want – a deepness where I realized if I can’t have the original; a substitute would be OK. When I was younger it was collecting Pokémon memorabilia, Sailor moon memorabilia, Barbie, TY beanie babies, feathers, foil and tumbled stones. I’ve out grown some of those items that I fool myself are ‘Usable’, ‘Fashionable’, ‘Collectable’, Something that will make me more special and maybe even lovable; in essence I could be termed as a hoarder or a magpie.

Man do I love shiny things. Beads, crystals, ribbons, foil candy wrappers, used ribbons, spools of fresh ribbons, embellished piece of paper, fabrics, feathers still intrigue me for iridescent qualities. I want to own a stuffed hummingbird – where would I display it? Do you really care? I just want it. I have lady pheasants’ feathers in multitudes; I’ve used it to make hair accessories but then stopped. Who would buy anything I made? No one. No normal person wears electric blue hairclips in a office. I was really into crystal growing at one point and considered if the 60 dollars I spent on chemicals created atleast 10 unique formations I could somehow sell them for 12 dollars a piece, making a little profit while not being greedy. No one was interested.

From there I made piece after uninspiring piece of jewelry. My grandmother loved them yet I never put them online to sell; what she likes I’m sure the world likes. To not like something I liked meant I wasn’t liked. My rationality lead me to this conclusion to which I already knew I was a odd ball but not one that could fit into these newer classes. 1920’s fascinators? Steampunk? A little bit of china workshop, desperation and national geographic; I don’t know.

From there I began looking at graphic shirts. Growing up obese in the age I did grow ‘graphic shirts’ weren’t like todays stock. Some of the stuff I own is really fodder I couldn’t help because at the time I wanted it. I’m a grown woman who wears a cobalt blue T-shirt with line art of a unicorn. The line art is shoddy, it doesn’t connect like I would have liked – its the equivalent of someone in Illustrator rendering a famous illustration. Its not worn outside. Then nail polish, sneakers, scarves, lately dolls and hats. My grandmother asks constantly, ‘Why do you need so many hats?’ Easily I can come up with four reasons. 1) Wearing the same color is boring. 2) I’m not as ‘fluffy’ as I use to be and need the added warmth. 3) Because I learned if you like something its smarter to have a replacement just incase it gets lost or damaged. 4) More than one style is needed when I want to pretend I’m someone else. When she asked about the dolls I recently found interest in I couldn’t give her a short answer.

This doll. I owned her, I might still have her too just without the earings, top and brush. I had lost a auction on eBay and somehow I was led to another brand by Mattel called ‘Monster high’. Barbie is Barbie, misshapen and iconic, sometimes magical. Its a piece of my youth very dear to me and innocent. What I stumbled across made me smile since sometimes current trends bisect my strange interests. I don’t know how many of these dolls I own now; I bought them used and incomplete. Some are even missing heads and from there I created brand new dolls.

There. That’s the thing; I always justify my current obsession with the line – ‘I can take something unwanted or something that might be garbage and make it pretty.’, ‘This color is trendy or this shirt is well designed.’, ‘This object reflects class and culture – I need it to prove I am not who you think I am.’ And I always stop short; I feel guilt over what I began or what I purchased. There is less money now because buying this Herand statue at the time made me feel special, the Royal albert demitasse cup’s color bewitched me. I never finish the projects I set up with the excuse, ‘Oh there’s no where to display it.’, ‘I do not have enough room to work’, ‘I do not like being stared at by grandma or asked questions.’ I deny myself the joy of completion just as I felt as a child I was denied positive attention and being told, ‘Its OK to be who you are.’ My father always wanted a boy and blamed my mother. My mother always wanted a social butterfly but failed to see how such ‘wishing’ turned me into the introvert I am.

I look at the things I own and do not always feel joy over owning them; I feel guilty and ashamed. Sadly I know after the current interest I have dies down, I’ll find another or become reinvested in something. I spent half a year just playing with ribbon, I’ll say ‘artistically’. Am I sane? I think I am. I know these items replace the relationships I wanted out of people, the things I lost growing up and emotions/memories that I cannot escape. God help me if I ever begin singing as my father did with graphic language meant to hurt and demoralize. I already do make up songs but they are generally harmless and easily forgotten; a cat I owned named Cheshire had his own theme song – Ah there were three verses of how he pillaged towns made of broccoli while ribbon dancing. He did a sort of samba. I don’t know if I’ll ever truly be able to stop collecting things; I try my best to not obsess and excess. Yet I hope that one day I can look back on all the items I own and not let them own me, to not let the bad influence tomorrow, control how I speak and treat others.

Think yellow, rainbows and butterflies.

– Bad touch Bear


3 thoughts on “Collecting habits, my gateway to destruction – Entry for 1/15/14

  1. Hey, maybe these are passions for you rather than obsessions … I like the way you describe that sense of having a big hollow that needs filling, and how collecting seems to promise to fill that gap. Really interesting insights — thank you for sharing them.

    Liked by 1 person

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