I completely lack the DNA that others possess that allows them to throw out old things. There, I said it. I'm not ashamed.
I'm not a hoarder, mind you. I don't save empty Happy Meal boxes or plastic wrap, and I'm not secretly raising a family of possums in the garden shed or have engineless cars parked in my yard or anything that would make me a star on The Learning Channel or A&E. But I've proven, mostly to myself because no one else cares, that things have value way past their expiration dates. I'm not talking about the hamburger in the bottom drawer of the fridge - that has an expiration date for a very good hospital avoiding reason. I'm talking about the 1978 World Book Encyclopedia set that I've kept from childhood. Going against my better judgment, I almost threw all 26 volumes out when we reorganized some book shelves a few weeks ago. So glad I didn't.
Boxed up and awaiting disposal in the garage, the Boy discovered them, and once again they are worth their weight in gold embossed page edges. In the last 3 days, while recovering from the final stages of his strep-throat induced penicillin regiment, he has spent hours perusing S, P, and T. Some favorites include Skeleton, Skull, Texas, Platypus, Snail, Turtle, Snake and Turbine. The grainy 1970s black-and-white photography doesn't faze him one bit.
For me, reading over his shoulder as he flips pages one by one has been excellent fun as well - catching excerpts about the latest technologies in Television (a total of 68 channels are available for TV broadcasting!) and the commentary about the edgy new show All in the Family, and how Television technology is just now starting to spread into developing places like Asia. Another glimpse reminded me that OJ Simpson was a revered athlete and not just a Saturday Night Live spoof. And the article called Satellite is about moons. Heh.
My favorite article has to be the one about the "personal snow plow" that "homeowners use to keep their driveways clear of snow in industrial regions within northern climates like Canada". The picture (which has a really groovy mid-70s Olds Toronado parked in the background) is nearly identical to the Personal Snow Plow (apparently they weren't called snowblowers yet) that I once again have fully functioning thanks to a benevolent and mechanically apt friend. After this weekend's cloud vomit, I'm glad I didn't throw that out either.