Tuesday, November 9, 2010

What A Load Of Scrap

And today's iron run pics. We got enough out of the cellar for a smallish batch of iron and a pretty good precious metals load. Here's Larry:

So the iron today was another 760 pounds; and the other metals made up another 80+ pounds (as usual, heavy on the brass and aluminum). So the total for iron removed from the property so far (since we've been counting) is now 23,220 pounds, or 11.61 tons, taken in 26 trips.

(Say it with me):

There's still more.


Sid said...

"There's still more."

Thalia said...

Seriously, we're going to be saying that for some time, probably, honestly, at least a couple of years still! Maybe more like five?

Anonymous said...

How will you know when you are 'done'? Is there a specific image in your mind of what constitutes having taken this monumental task to completion? Are you both in agreement as to what this is?

Thalia said...

I don't really know. I guess when things are functional? When all the stuff no one who is here now wants or needs is gone? Though, honestly, we don't have to agree. I'm the one who lives here, not Tara. :)

Anonymous said...

Wow, I don't know how you two aren't just seething with anger. No amount of $$ from the hoard will make this worth your time and effort, and yet you have to do it. What a huge burden you've had thrust upon you. I feel really bad for you both and I am in awe of your equanimity.

Anonymous said...

Has this painstaking process of going through the hoard item-by-item revealed to either of you what might have been his motivation in keeping these things? With my mother I can't decide if it is void filling, indecisiveness, control, greed, having things in case of an emergency, hanging on to the memory of deceased relatives... Specific components of her hoard seem to meet each of these purposes. It's like she's the all-in-one hoarder.

Thalia said...

I don't know if both you Anonymoi are the same person, but to answer Anonymous #1, really? I thought I was seething with anger. I guess the humor is actually part of that (if we didn't laugh we'd cry, right? to quote our Aunt Jean). But it is strangely good to hear someone call it a burden. Because I hadn't thought of it in those terms. It was just kind of something we had to do.

For the second Anonymous: I don't know what his motivation was. I have tried to figure it out for years; I used to have theories that it was related to being a kid in the Great Depression and losing his father quite suddenly in 1934 in the middle of an already bad situation, and that the hoarding came out of a deep-seated need for security. Nowadays, though, I'm not so sure that it is fundamentally a psychological thing, as odd as that is to say. It was so strange, and so common at the same time, as far as the patterns when compared to other hoarders go (which I know through reading the experiences of other children of hoarders) that it almost seems like something organic or chemical in the structure of the brain. Or maybe I've just given up trying to figure it out. Trying to figure it out is in some ways trying to understand the madness on the madman's terms, and I just lost patience with it. Because ultimately, really, there is no why.

Or at least so I've found. And it is not in a million years worth my brainpower any more. I need that to unravel the damage it's done to me, actually.

Anonymous said...

Anonymous #1 here (or maybe #2-the "seething with anger" one). I think your humor leavens a LOT of it and really, I'd be so pissed that nothing would be funny. You have my great admiration.

Yes, it is a burden - a HUGE burden that your father forced upon you. Just like he forced you to live in an underheated, leaky, crap-filled house so he could live out his dream. Dream of what? Who knows - dream of being the king of his castle, of being in complete control because obviously those dolts who live with him don't know anything about anything, dream of being admired as a craftsman, dream of being smarter than everyone else when it comes to accumulating wealth and value . . . who knows?

Hoarders like your dad are so selfish - even when their hoarding days are done. No one's comfort matters but their own. No one else's time, effort, pain, comfort, whatever matters as much as their
"right" to do whatever they damn please.

Tonia said...

Many years ago, I used to go with a friend to AA meetings. Learned a lot of good life lessons, even without the whole being an alcoholic thing.

One thing that's always stuck with me is " 'Why' is the booby prize." Meaning, wow, yay, you've spent a lot of time figuring out, or trying to figure out, why you're a drunk. When, actually, you need to stop drinking and learn to live the rest of your life in a manner so that you don't have to drink to deal with it.

"Why" is the booby prize.

Unfortunately, to strain the AA metaphor even further, the next step is for the alcoholic to pick up "the wreckage of his past." Sadly, you two are quite literally picking up the wreckage for your father.

Love your blog and continue to be blown away by the smarts, creativity and competence that you two display throughout.

Tara said...

Part of the "why" was that it was a business, but even I remember being a little puzzled back in high school when Dad would part out a VW and save pretty much every part from it.

Yet, when he fixed customer's cars, he usually had to buy new parts.

So what were all the parts for? I don't think his dealer's license allowed him to sell parts like a junkyard would. Of course, it always meant that any repairs to his own car pretty much didn't cost anything. Sorta like "Need a 71 Squareback door? Just grab one off the other cars". But of course the answer was that it was the hoarder's gene.

And then he'd always get new additions to the fleet. Sometimes they were bought (and sometimes practically given - I can remember a lot of $25 cars) for the purpose for fixing up to sell, or for us to use. After a while I don't think he had the energy to fix anything that came in, so cars would come in that he thought needed less work, and other projects would be forgotten...

Then everything snowballs and a project you were excited for years ago is just something that time has started to claim..

Thalia said...

Thanks, Tonia.

I get that for the person with the disorder or addiction, figuring out 'why' can be just another exercise in self-centered avoidance of the effects of their dysfunction. I do think though there is a value in figuring out why, at least from the point of the people hurt. Not the dysfunctional/abuser's why, though, as that isn't going to change anything, but my own whys—why do I do this? What is at the root of it? How has all this affected me? If I can't figure out the why, trying to change my behavior isn't going to get anywhere. It's just imposing something from the outside in, and in my experience with myself and my personality, I know it won't take. That's probably not what you meant though. :)