Homer's Travels: Shredding 20 Years Of My Past

Thursday, May 15, 2008

Shredding 20 Years Of My Past

I am slowly starting to get ready for the move. I'm having trouble getting started even though the moving/garage sale is Memorial Day Weekend. I spent most of today shredding old documents. While I'm not the only person who has that pack rat problem, I have a thing about throwing away documents. Over the last couple months I have gone through my records and shredded. Fourteen (14) bags full of little bitty pieces of paper. Investment records from the early 90s. Pay stubs going all the way back to 1987 (!) including my very first one. Health insurance claims from the 90s. Crap ... all crap.

As I shredded it though, I had this weird feeling that I was destroying twenty years of my life. Was that all I was for the past twenty years? Manila envelopes full of pay stubs and insurance policies? My only consolation was that my trail went down with a fight. My shredder, supposedly capable of chewing through ten pages at a time, hardly could handle more then four and overheated after only fifteen minutes of constant paper feeding. 15 minutes grinding ... 20 minutes cooling off. 43% uptime is pretty pathetic. I guess I should be proud of the toughness of my history. Then again, it was only paper.


  1. It's a weird thing. If those bits of paper trigger memories...what else would trigger those memories? So in a way it is a little be like shredding your past.
    That's the price of living in the present I suppose.

  2. Are you talking about me... ;)

    I love my paper shredder. It only does 8 at a time and never seems to overheat.

    I have to be careful not to over shred.

  3. Phil: I can be very nostalgic at times. Now I wish I'd kept my first pay stub. I could have framed it. Too late for that.

    JaG: Why yes ... I am.

    That's my problem - over shredding. I think I try to stuff too much thick stuff into the shredder at once.

  4. Don't forget to oil your shredder. I burned out my old shredder from no oil. At least it was just a shredder and not my car!

  5. Sorry I didn't comment on this post sooner. I was digging myself out from the sea of paper I currently have.

    On the plus side, I bought a new shredder a few weeks back that really will do 15 pages. It's a joy, I tell ya.

  6. Dobegil: Hmmm ... Didn't know they needed oil. That might explain a few things.

    GH: 15 Sheets?!? I'm green with shredder envy - HA!

  7. I just vacated my storage space and i am going through the same thing Homer-Dog. Pay stubs from my first job in 1973. Bank statements from the '90's. Paid bills from the '80's and 90's!
    The memories were at times...overwhelming.

  8. Ron: Welcome to Homer's Travels. Your comment makes me feel better. It appears I am not alone when it comes to keeping old paperwork. But I've turned a new leaf and I intend to scan and shred all my paperwork as they come in. At least I will once my office is unpacked and put back together.