The Quest for Clean – Paper Trail

Because I never really had settled into a “permanent” home, I always had some stuff that I stored at my parent’s house. Most of these things were boxes of notebooks from Jr. High and High School, or research papers from college. I brought a couple back with me over the summer and looked through them. What I found was a lot of really dramatic, poorly-written poetry from ages 15-18, taking up space in spiral-bound notebooks.

Now, I personally believe it’s important to keep some record of these things. They’re a reflection of who I was at that point in life. As awful and embarrassing as some of that stuff is, I wouldn’t want it to disappear from the planet forever.

So, I made a decision that I’m really pleased with: scan all of those pages, and then shred and compost the actual physical notebooks. No physical space taken up, and plus I get some carbon for my compost pile out of the deal! I’ll be doing the same with my college papers. Again, they’re something that I want to be able to access but not necessarily something I need to have taking up space in my home.

The one thing that I’m fine keeping “in the flesh” are my journals. I kept a journal all through high school, and still do at times. I often put thought into purchasing a journal, and I actually like to be able to hold them in my hands and re-read them. Those are sort of scattered all over at this point, and I’d really like to have them all together in one dedicated spot.

What about you? What do you do with your papers?

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One Comment to “The Quest for Clean – Paper Trail”

  1. I kept every single essay I wrote in university for about 10 years. And yes, years later some of them were uncomfortably asinine to read. They were in my parents’ attic until they moved, when I put every last one of them in the recycling bin. Journals are a different matter. You keep them. For always.

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