Wednesday, 7 April 2010

Don't stop me now

I am gripped by insanity. I know I need to come out of it, but I can't. It's too perfect.

I am clearing up. No. I am clearing out. Objects that have terrorised me for ten years. It's heady stuff, this. Sweeping out the old and dead. I feel like a conqueror in a frock. This power could go to my head. Next I shall be pulling on jackboots.

Now I have power over bits of cut-up paper. Foam shapes. Tangled string. 100 piece jigsaws that no-one ever wanted to do. Especially not jigsaws with three pieces missing. It says so on the Oxfam sticker peeling off the lid.

Someone helpfully put the sticker over the parrot's face. Three pieces missing 59p. Like All aspiration is pointless. Noose enclosed. And I saved that jigsaw for ten years, in hope, even though experience taught me after three years that all hope is destructive. It's the most pointless thing you can do. Hope. I have reconciled myself and accepted it. The three missing jigsaw pieces will not magically appear on the doorstep one morning with the milk, ten years late, with a note of apology from the previous owner Found them down the back of the sofa! Sorry!

Better to be shut of the thing, kick it out. Start afresh. Look for a jigsaw that has 100 pieces, and not 97. I cannot even bear to pass it on to the next hapless home educator.

Into the recycling bin it's gone. And did that feel right. So right, in fact, that when Shark and Squirrel remind me that I promised to take them to the forest play, I almost gasp, I cannot. I have to stay here and throw away all your jigsaws, especially any with missing pieces. But I know they don't yet have my perspective on liberation, my wisdom about throwing off shackles, and my newly acquired carelossity freewheeling whocaresashitanyway attitude.

So I say nothing. And I go to the wood.


I mope. I want to come home and throw away jigsaws, put up shelves, reorder my environment, reclassify my scrapbooking hoard and separate paper by size, colour, quality and variability depending on transparency and satin varnish.

After fifteen minutes propped up against a wooden stick in a wood, fantasising about Ikea shelving, watching the kids muck about in hammocks and rope bridges and tyre swings, I feel if I do not act on this cleaning-up-my-life impulse, I may explode.

I decide in the interests of humanity I should abandon my kids in the wood. They are old enough. So that's what I do. I equip Shark with my phone number, and poo poo her response that my phone number is not much good if she doesn't have a phone. I answer that if there is a medical emergency, like Squirrel gets stuck up the tree again, then simply borrow a phone from the mad axe murderer bound to be walking these forested parts. Better still, ask the play supervisor over there. He's busy stringing up ropes between trees while 36 kids queue to hurl themselves across it, equipped with two sticks and no sense of balance. Anyway, we're only ten minutes away, you can walk home and fetch me.

And then I come home and throw away jigsaws with missing pieces and sweep the floor and clean the window and put up the lovely, lovely, lovely Ikea shelves.

3 comments:

sharon said...

Oh Grit, has it ever occurred to you that some of us just may have sent our children to educational establishments so that we could be free to dispose of their precious hoard while they were safely locked away? Especially on bin days! Hee-hee-hee!

MadameSmokinGun said...

It's not so bad when the things you're getting rid of start being quieter - it's all those big plastic beeping flashing things that start playing Old MacDonald very loudly just as you've pulled up outside the charity shop. Quick thinking required - dump and run, change the subject, don't send them to a play group where they reguarly cut up old Argos catalogues for sticking: 'Look at my picture. We've got one of these at home haven't we? I'm going to play with it today...' 'Let's go to the park..... give me that picture!'

Rachel M. said...

My mom said some jig saw puzzle companies will mail you the replacement pieces but i think when she did this they sent her an entirely new puzzle, so then she's still left with extra pieces. Huh!