Does Artwork Need To Have Monetary Value To Have Worth?


Despite evidence to the contrary, I am not a hoarder. The General is on a roll. She is ready to “fish or cut bait” when it comes to orchestrating a complete new look both inside and outside the house. That includes getting rid of stuff we don’t need. She is ready to be done with it.

She didn’t actually say that I’m a hoarder, but she came dangerously close. For one thing, she doesn’t want to mar the freshly painted look of the house by putting back some of the artwork we’ve displayed for years. She thinks I have a tendency to overdo it. Maybe she’s right. Of course she’s right. Just ask her, she’s never wrong. As the expression goes, “That old dog won’t hunt”. She married me, didn’t she? I rest my case.

She wants to get rid of stuff. I bet that doesn’t include the wedding dress she’s had stored in a large suitcase for the past 47 plus years. I can show you the shelf in the garage where it’s been stored since we moved into this house. It is a large green hard-surfaced suitcase. We’ve always found a place to store it. Has it been opened in the last 47 years? I doubt it, but as time marches on we lug that green suitcase from place to place.  We always have and I guess we always will.

Oops, I may have messed up? After (or if) she reads this, she may opt to get rid of both the wedding dress and the husband. Then what would I do? My first answer is, “Anything I want”, but that is not my final answer. After all, we pledged, “til’ death do us part.” Anyway you cut it, I’m not getting out of this alive. Why expedite my demise by writing nonsense that could potentially get me knocked in the head? Actually, if I had married the great, great, great…. granddaughter of Attila the Hun, I might have a problem. You know that they say about dominant genes. As it is, I’m home free.

I mentioned, “freshly painted look” of the house. The only room currently finished is our bathroom. The General mentioned she likes the look. She still wants to orchestrate a spa-like environment and she thinks the color works great. However, that look will not include an assortment of jungle animal pictures we bought at an art show on auditorium shores in Austin 40 plus years ago. The pictures still look great. They are attractively framed with grass-cloth matting. If we don’t hang them in the bathroom, we don’t hang them anywhere else. It is the only space we’ve got where they work (or at least previously worked).

If she wants to part with the jungle pictures, I’m okay with removing them. But what about the very large painted “Plaster of Paris” giraffe plant stand or the lion that weighs about 40 pounds. They both still look great, too. Parting with them is off-limits. They were gifts from her mother 40 years ago about the same time we bought the artwork that she wants to toss. Her mother lovingly painted the jungle animals before they were presented to us as gifts. I get it. They are a piece of the past that trigger fond memories. You don’t part with things that trigger a feel good experience.

Does artwork need to have monetary value to have worth? What about the antique wire cutters that I had hanging in a grouping of pictures? They belonged to my grandfather. I never looked at that wall without thinking of him. The General isn’t sure that she wants that grouping of pictures (mostly Dalhart Windberg prints) put back on the wall in our entry hall. After all, they were placed over the bookcase that is six feet tall. It was a stretch for me using an eight-foot ladder and climbing up to the second step from the top to get high enough to hang them. Maybe she’s right, but I thought they looked great.

I started to ask her about the “Dick and Jane” calendar she keeps hanging in the small room that contains the toilet. Do we need to have a calendar in the bathroom? We both have an iPhone. One of the applications is a calendar. We hold it in the palm of our hand. Why do we need a calendar in the bathroom? It all gets back to triggers. The “Dick and Jane” calendar reminds her of learning to read. Reading opens lots of doors. Obviously, the jungle animals are gone, but I’m not holding my breath on the calendar.

I telephoned the General yesterday and she was outside washing the light fixtures on either side of the front door. She mentioned the birds had done a number on them. You can imagine which number. She is into a fresh new look. I was a little amused last night when she mentioned in passing that she’s been telling me for three years that the light fixtures needed to be cleaned. I’m sure she has, but just because they needed to be cleaned yesterday doesn’t mean they weren’t cleaned by “yours truly” six months ago. Sometimes my labors of love get overlooked.

She wanted to know if I noticed the light fixtures when I came in from work yesterday. I did not. I didn’t come through the front door. I came through the garage. Fortunately, we have an exterior door into the garage in addition to the garage door. The garage door is inoperable thanks to my backing Treva’s car into it. Just for the record, I am not passive-aggressive. I didn’t do it on purpose. The bottom panel to the garage door could have easily been replaced, but they aren’t making that kind of garage door any longer. Apparently, too many people got one of their digits caught in the door when they tried to manually open it by hand from the inside. Ouch – that smarts just thinking about it.

Who knows what the day will bring. I’m beginning to think we’ll have painters in our home long enough to claim them on our income tax as dependents. They were supposed to be finished by tomorrow. It isn’t going to happen despite they fact that they painted until 10:00 p.m. last night. The ceiling in the living area isn’t yet finished. For that matter, neither are the walls. Despite the fact that the bathroom is painted, they haven’t started on the bedroom yet.

I’m sure by the time I return home this evening, the General will have a longer list of things we no longer need. I’m open to eliminating the clutter, but I’m not open to getting rid of my microscope. I got it for Christmas when I was in the sixth grade. If I’ve kept it this long, why would I get rid of it now?

All My Best!



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