Here at TueNight HQ, we all share a bit of an obsession with stuff.
Lovely stuff, ephemeral stuff, goofy stuff, that we pile and store and cherish. Old magazines, beautiful shoes, nostalgic action figures, scraps of meaningful scribbles. Maybe we’re all just weird and that’s why we work together, but I think there’s something about our generation (Xish, we like to say), that’s wont to hang on versus let go. Even while we become more virtual and cloud-y (as of last weekend my CDs no longer exist in their jewel cases; next step, digitize!) we still have trouble tossing the mementos.
Curators, collectors, packrats, call us what you will, but we treasure our unlikely treasures. Here are just a few:
- MoMA Bubble Necklace A present from my husband. If I could wear this necklace every day, I would.
- Cowboy Boots I’m no cowgirl, in fact I’m a bit a-feared of cows. But I do have a mini collection of cowboy boots from Austin, TX. Austin was one of the first “work” trips I took as a 20-something music critic in 1992 to the SXSW music festival — back when the ground was a little dustier and the conference crowds much smaller. The boots reminds me of a lighter, looser time: seeing Junior Brown play the Continental Club or playing softball with mutton-chopped Mojo Nixon. Plus, the boots are loud, funky and extremely comfortable.
- Metal “Love Statue” Sculpture A really cool metal replica of the Robert Indiana sculpture that embodies Philly. I’m a Philly girl, born and bred.
- Drawing by Kat Borosky Some of you know Kat as the mucho talented art director of this site. Way back when Kat and I worked together at a newspaper in Philly. To illustrate a story, she drew this fun picture of me going to NYC; I’ve kept it ever since. It’s my Mary Richards moment.
- Happy Baby Dinosaur At least I think that’s what he is? I love the color, simplicity and happiness of it. I bought this painting in the 90s for $5 from a $5 gallery show in Philadelphia; the frame cost 15 times that. At least I thought I bought this painting. It was only a few weeks ago my brother (also at the gallery show) told me that, in fact, he had pointed out the painting to my ex-boyfriend and that my ex snatched it from him. Yuck. My brother never forgave him. The things we don’t remember…or want to forget. But I can’t quit this dinosaur.
- Personalized Mii Wedding Cake Topper and Wedding Matches We gave the matches on the right away at our wedding, dispersed throughout the venue as just one of many party gifts. At the time, we were so overwhelmed with the madness that it didn’t occur to us to save some for ourselves. Luckily, something made me grab one right as the evening was ending, and I’m so glad. It’s the only one we have. My husband and I both treasure it and keep on our shelf, right next to our personalized Mii-character wedding cake topper (technically, it was a pie topper. Yup, we served pie).
- Kermit This is a genuine, 1975-produced Kermit the Frog which originally belonged to my sister. I inherited it, and he’s been a key part of my home decor ever since. He came with me to college, sat on my bed in every tiny apartment I ever rented, and now sits on top of my desk, in this meditative pose (velcro on the arms and legs — genius!). I know the whole world loves Kermit, but this one is MY Kermit, and he’s staying with me for life.
- The Arm Band I don’t even remember where I originally got this fabric camo cuff — probably at some fashion event years ago. It wasn’t really my style so it sat next to my jewelry tree for ages. Then, on the first family visiting day at rehab #3, my husband pulled it out of his pocked and presented it to me. “I saw this on your table,” he said, “and thought you might need it right now.” I did, and I wore it pretty much every day for the next four months. It reminded me then — and always reminds me now — of my husband’s unconditional love, support and compassion. It’s one of the most priceless pieces of ‘jewelry’ that I own.
- Aquamarine Ring My five-foot-tall grandmother wore a rock of an aquamarine on her petite hand. After she died, my grandfather remarried, and in the shift, my mother didn’t inherit the ring. She loved it so much, she had one made for herself from memory. I always admired it, so when my mother was flush, she had a smaller version made for me as well. I was visiting friends in LA when I left my jewelry box (hidden) in the car. When I returned, the box and all my jewelry was gone; it may be the only thing in my life I’ve regretted. I had this aquamarine ring made for myself and I intend to leave it to my daughter. I kind of hope she loses it.
- Love Notes from My Daughter Notes like these litter our home, scattered around every room. My daughter is a prolific artist, and I’ve been lucky enough to be on the receiving end of her expressions of love. Sometimes they’re beautiful and moving, and I magnet them to the fridge. Sometimes they’re sweet enough to fold up and toss in my purse to be rediscovered in a crabbier moment. Sometimes I’m less impressed and I recycle them before they overrun the house, hiding them in empty yogurt squeezer boxes pushed to the bottom of the bin.
- Anniversary Sculptures Like my daughter, my artist husband expresses his love by making things. Every anniversary, he makes me a little piece. It always has something thoughtful and moving written on the back and is themed to something important happening in our lives together. We’ve been married for eight years (and counting).
Tell Us: What are some of your most treasured items?