Issue 66 Apr 29, 2024


I've been looking at all my personal stuff to try to minimize a bit. My brother did that the hardcore way, moving to Greece with what he could fit in a carry-on. He sold the rest, stored just about nothing, and that's that.

It's a compromise, only owning what you can carry. I'm not willing to go that far, but looking through all the stuff I've got, I want to cut back. What I'll keep are things that really mean something, or are necessary for whatever reason. Spark joy, and all that jazz, you know. It's not a bad way to look at ownership, asking yourself if the item in question makes you happy or not, Marie Kondo hype be damned.

Take clothes for example. I have a lot of t-shirts, some that I just don't use. There's nothing wrong with them, I fancy another look these days, and yet, there they are because they can be, there's space. This brought me to the question, how many t-shirts do you need?

Fifteen, as it were.

That breaks down to eight black ones (three oversized, three more fitted, two randoms), four white, and three for the gym.

I have more than forty, so I'll donate those to charity. Nuts really, but there you go.

Shoes pose another issue. I have a lot of sneakers by design, as I wear them down too quickly otherwise. That said, two pairs of regular sneakers, a slightly more fancy pair, and then a pair of boots (got to get that cowboy look going), fancy shoes, gym shoes suitable for weightlifting, and two pairs of winter boots (for different temperatures) – that's a lot of shoes, even after having given away five pairs... Not sure what to do about that, actually.

Other things are easier to get rid off, like paperbacks I'll never read again, redundant kitchenware, all those old charging cables and whatnot. It gets a bit trickier when I look at my game collection, which these days is mostly digital, but for all those Game Boy games that I haven't had the heart to get rid off. I'll keep them for now, but I’ll find a decent storage solution for them. They're part of a project I want to do in the future, too, so I'll use that as an excuse.

What's worth keeping, other than the necessities of life? Well, it's things like those Game Boy games, as well as vinyl records (we've got a decent collection) and books that have sentimental value. But other than that? Tech, like my ROG Ally, and phones and computers, headphones for music listening, but then it gets more questionable.

This isn’t a whim, I’ve been wanting to cut back on stuff for quite some time, but it had to happen now because we’ve downsized a lot as part of a move. We still split life between Stockholm and the small house on the countryside, but the new apartment is 40 per cent smaller than the old one, and has limited storage. The idea is to spend less on living in the city and, sometime down the line, look for something bigger in the countryside. Either way, this was a financially beneficial move, and a chance for us to do something entirely different. We went from an apartment from early 1910s, to something that literally was finished just over a week ago. The apartment has that brand new smell, which in this case means it smells like wood, as the eight stories high building is all made of wood, which is cool.

It all went fast. From idea to selling and buying, moving out and then moving in, was six weeks. Crazy fast, involving several hotel nights, but here we are.

I think I managed to downsize everything according to plan. It fits in the new place, but as I was hanging my clothes, I wondered if I’d saved too many things. That’s the thing with minimizing, I’ve come to realize. Once you start, it keeps on going.

📦 Moving house has put me behind on many things, as you, dear reader, might’ve noticed due to the lack of letters and updates. I’m still behind on, well, most stuff, but it’s getting there. As is a fun project that I’m sponsoring, which I can’t wait to share with you.

🎮 Downsizing in the city did mean that some things moved to the countryside. This is where my gaming PC now resides, which meant I got some modded Skyrim going when we stayed there for a week when we were between apartments. Unfortunately, it also means that I only have my ROG Ally, as well as the iPhone, I guess, for gaming in the city. There hasn’t been much of that going on, packing up has taken its sweet time and effort, but I’m curious to see if I think it’ll cut it. In the spirit of downsizing, I don’t want a gaming laptop that moves back and forth – a dedicated handheld is bad enough.

📚 There’s been plenty of reading though, albeit a bit one-sided. I’ve been binging the Dresden Files books by Jim Butcher. Out of the eight books I’ve read this year, five are from that series. Popcorn books is fine when you’re overloaded, and I’ve enjoyed them, but after the current one (Peace Talks), I think I’ll take a break. I keep a read books log on my Swedish site, if you’re interested.

📺 Finally watched Oppenheimer. I liked it a lot. Other than that, there hasn’t been much TV or movies, just a few ones, where Anatomy of a Fall stood out, but not enough for me to obsess over. We did finally watch the last two seasons of Game of Thrones though, which I thought was better than the earlier ones, but pretty weak as endings go. Done and dusted, I guess.

🎵 One downside with moving down in apartment size is that the vinyl collection won’t fit. Well, it would, but not in a way that we think makes sense for the apartment. It now resides in the office, and I’m curious to see if I’ll listen to any vinyls at all. I’m telling myself it’s temporary because I really want my collection at home. Just have to buy a bigger house down the line. Listening to vinyls makes more sense in the countryside anyway, I feel.

🏋🏻‍♀️ There’s a gym across the street from the new apartment. I intend to peruse it regularly, and I’m putting this here to put some additional pressure on me to actually follow up on this. Exercise has been scarce this year, and I need to get back to it.

🌻 Spring has yet to arrive in full. When it does, mowing the lawn will become an ever-present item on the to-do list. Last year, we had to hire help to get it sorted in the end because of poor planning, and being unlucky with the weather when we had planned to take care of the (fairly large) garden. I’m putting this here to be held accountable, too.

🙊 I’m almost off social media, rarely checking in on any of the networks. That might change now that the move’s done, but I doubt it. It feels as if social media is over, doesn’t it? Good riddance.

📧 This is a new format, as I said I’d change pace. We’ll see how it develops. If you have thoughts, do drop me a line. Email is best, obviously.

It’s been a couple of weeks for me, as I’m sure you can tell. I hope yours has been less stressful, but just as happy ones. I’ll write you again soonish. Until then, take care.

— Thord D. Hedengren ⚡

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