An unexpected house project prompted my wife and I to reevaluate everything in our home as to whether we wanted to keep it or not. We also realized that our kids have been living on their own for quite some time, and maybe we could reclaim some space for ourselves! A novel idea. One thing led to another and before you know it, there were twin beds, desks, file cabinets, chairs, cabinets and mattresses all curbside! God bless the Sanitation Department, six years after Sandy and they are still are doing a great job. I did learn that if you are throwing mattresses out, you need to bag them. So off to 116th Street and the folks at Mazzone Hardware say, “Oh yeah we have those!” God bless those folks and their discount programs!
So now we have a room, devoid of furniture, dedicated to yoga. Yes, we have a Namaste room. Truth be told, I like it. And I got to move out of the basement, probably the first time since we were married that I got an office. The mermaid has had an office for some time, but running a house requires one (or so I was told!). And the other rooms have less stuff. So, we kind of downsized within our own home. It feels open and airy and like a different house.
There are other kinds of “throwing things out” scenarios too. Like when the city said they’ll just throw those beaches out for the summer. Or when the Feds say, yeah, we’ll just throw those thousand volleyball players out of our park for a while. Or when some wunderkind at City Hall decides to test the waters with a “yeah, let’s throw those parking restrictions out.” Those scenarios have not produced the same open, airy and community feel-good feelings that throwing stuff out of the house has. Not even close.
Now it’s highly unusual for me to throw anything out. Well, that’s not completely true. You see, there were charges that when I lived with my uncle, that I would throw his mail out. But it was over six months old and from people asking for money, and frankly, he didn’t have any. Or the rumors about me throwing things out on the mermaid. To this day those rumors are unproved, and I continue to plead my innocence, but to no avail. I come from a family that had a junk business, and you didn’t throw stuff out. In fact, you took stuff in and fixed it. My uncles were continually bringing stuff back, claiming that they could fix it. My mother got so desperate that I think she actually put some things in other people’s yards just to get rid of them. I was infected with this thinking too, telling my kids that I could fix their toys by bringing them down to the basement. Of course, I never fixed anything (hope they are not reading this), but it did take their minds off the broken toys!
Now there is a positive way of “throwing something out there.” Every Tuesday night at Connolly’s, the Squidmeister hosts an Open Mic, and Becky never lets the bottom of a glass show. Musicians, both experienced and inexperienced, get up on that small Greenwich Village-like stage and “throw it out there.” They bravely take their creativity and hope that people like it. And everyone responds with love. So, if you have a hankering to play in public, come on out and do your thing. Or if you just like raw, live music, come by and get some of the musical melodies tossed out by the musicians. Some of it is pretty damn good!