That day of impending doom arrived yesterday. And that day I speak of is the hard rubbish collection day. The looming day of the removal of what once was and of objects they viewed as mere trash but I saw as treasure.
Valuables from your past and mine, material objects that were synonymous with you and pieces that would trigger those wonderfully blissful memories. And apparently I was not the only being who noted the riches in some of these pieces.
It was those very leeches who wander from curb to curb in their beat-up white vans that spew up a vile concoction of fumes as they struggle past, sorting through those soiled mattresses and dated armchairs with discolored stuffing and foam innards erupting from the cushions for those illusive pieces. Finding purpose for items in which we’ve discarded with little regard. Now please don’t get me wrong, I do not hate and I suppose the use of the word leeches is quite a harsh adjective and I myself have partaken in such escapades in the past! It’s just this anger resides in the fact that they’ve come along and taken from you; taken pieces that I myself would have delighted to hoard away in a precious vault.
To most of our surprise almost everything we had carted out to the curb disappeared and some within mere minutes. Like your stainless steel sink for example, circa the early seventies, disappeared shortly after we abandoned it and moved back into the back yard to collect more trash. Soon followed by the metal shelving parts that once remained lodged within the antique oven and then a few hours later the oven itself disappeared.
And it was that very oven itself that left me feeling rather blue. It was truly such a divine piece. Architecturally unimpressive yet design-wise I felt like it was such an understated work of art. Quite the retro fabulous show stopper. It was also something I both loved and hated at once; loved to photograph yet hated for its lackluster performance.
It was also a revelation for my parents into the actual worth of these pieces which they were more than happy to discard. And when I mentioned the worth of these pieces eons ago it was simply brushed away as silliness however in seeing them poached away within minutes and from their very own eyes they’ve suddenly developed remorse and of course the usual anger towards myself. And all because I never ‘spoke’ up enough.
To be fair it is true that I never did speak up enough but that was because whenever I did my words were simply met with a backhanded insult and the “this isn’t your house, you do not get to dictate what we do,” line. And as you know a line like that cuts very, very deep and eventually one learns to keep quiet.
The whole situation is much like children playing with toys, the dominant child will always crave and lust after the toy the other child is playing with. So here I am again; the brunt of blame and cowardliness. Having to carry my own guilt and now theirs for the loss of sentimental material objects. At least I have those photographs that I managed to capture before they were lost to us forever.
Hopefully these pieces have now moved onto more abundant pastures and will hopefully lead a more bountiful life and perhaps be even more adored and appreciated by a loyal collector.
One can only hope.