Sunday, October 3, 2010

Sunday Shame: How Long Can you Keep an Item?



As you can see, above is a simple picture of a Black leather wallet.  I have noticed a trend in my neighbourhood of men holding onto their wallets until they are long past their expiration date. By that I mean until they are falling apart and looking absolutely ragged.  The unhusband has had the same wallet for about 12-13 years now.  My neighbor, Andy P  had his wallet for the better part of 20 years.  Yes, imagine what that looked like.  He finally replaced it this week, after I threatened to buy him one for his birthday this month, because I couldn't stand to see the ugly thing one more time. I have asked them both to explain why it is they have both been so reluctant  to part with them and have yet to get a reasonable explanation.  I have heard of men keeping their underwear until it literally melts away, but never have I heard a story or even an urban legend that explains the need to hold onto a wallet.

They both have defended their desire by saying that the wallet still serves its purpose.  And maybe they are correct, but honestly I would be ashamed to pull that out of my pocket to pay for anything.  I am well aware that North Americans have penchant for replacing perfectly usable items however, at some point we need to balance being frugal and environmental, with a sense of taste. December is coming and I have forewarned the unhusband to buy a new one, or discover that Santa brought him a new wallet Christmas morning.  I knew that even as I said this, that it was not a real threat because I bought him his last wallet for Christmas all of those years ago. He seems content to haul around his wallets until I get around to replacing them.

The unhusband has countered my wallet disgust, with my habit of holding onto shoes forever.  I have still not forgiven him for throwing out the running shoes that I had for over 10 years one day when I left them home unguarded.  It is my belief that a comfy, if slightly ugly pair of shoes are worth their weight in gold. So what if the dog chewed them and the smell emanating from them was a little less than pleasant.  Who's running shoes smell nice anyways?  I believe the difference here lies in the fact that unlike his hideous wallet, my shoes were not exposed to the public on a daily basis. Andy P however,  had no excuse. In fact, I am quite certain that Andy P realized this because he came over this morning to show me his new wallet.  And  no, it was not to stop my endless pestering.

Some of you may feel that this does not rise to the level of Sunday Shame but trust me it does; it's not a simple idiosyncrasy of mine showing through.  This week I think it would be great to talk about what one item you would like to see your significant other/roommate/friend/parent get rid of and what item you know damn well that you have had too long.  I agree with reduce reuse and recycle, but sometimes some things just outlive their usefulness.