The last time I was seized by the urge to clean the apartment I was struck by just how many articles of clothing I have.
And most of them were bought on the cheap at thrift shops, eBay or from fellow Ivy enthusiasts.
I'm working on an inventory for a renter's insurance policy, and it's turned out to be quite a chore. My initial concern was for the 30-odd fly rods and assorted reels and other gear, but when I mentioned the clothing to the agent she suggested I include it.
Not that anyone's going to steal the clothes, but a fire or flood could wipe the whole mess out and leave me nekkid.
What are we talking about here?
Rough figures - two dozen sport coats and blazers. About the same for suits — many of them sacks, but a few double-breasteds, standard American two-button jobs and a few odds and ends, like a Corneliani and a couple of English cuts.
Piles of chinos in different weights and configurations. Ditto wool pants.
Shirts? Forget about it. I probably have 500 shirts if you include polos.
Luckily I have a cabin where I can store the summer stuff, which is not included in the above.
Forty pairs of shoes. Ties out the wazoo. Pocket squares, hats, striped watch bands.
The dirty secret? I wear about 10 to 20 percent of this stuff with any regularity. But I can hardly bring myself to divest.
I do believe it's a sickness, worthy of being included in the next edition of the DSM.
I won't watch that TV show about hoarders — hitting a little close to the nerve there.
Every so often I take a pile to the thrift shop, or sell something. Selling is a real pain in the neck, though.
But something has to give. I am out of room, in a large two-bedroom place. (Plus the packed closets elsewhere.)
Occasionally it comes in handy, though. The local high school is doing "Guys and Dolls" and I am loaning them some shoes and fedoras. Maybe I'll just let the props department keep the things.
What is needed is a thorough assessment and a massive sell-off. Then donate whatever doesn't sell.
And then some discipline. If something comes in, something else has to go out.
It's not as much fun as it used to be.