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Tidying up

Netnet Camomot . 

LIVING in a big house may give its residents the false belief that they can accumulate things since there’s always room for more, anyway.

A studio condominium unit, on the other hand, may force its owner or lessee to constantly hold each of his possessions and ask Marie Kondo’s mantra: “Does it spark joy?”

After buying Kondo’s book, “The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up,” in 2015, I should be an expert now on, well, tidying up. The book has been gathering dust on the shelf for four years, yet its words remain somewhere above my minute brain, waiting to be acknowledged. I may have subconsciously applied the KonMari method on some situations, though. If they don’t spark joy, I make a 180-degree turn and say, Bye!

There are indeed things here and in the bodega that don’t spark joy anymore. I told my brother about this and he said, “I’ll cross the bridge when I’m there.” There—meaning, the bodega.

I’m looking forward to the day when I’ve finished reading all the books so I can finally choose which among them spark joy and move forward with Kondo’s advice to keep “about thirty volumes at any one time.” This is the advice that bookworms have reacted to with much, hmmm, what’s the word—rage? They could not imagine giving away even one book.

The KonMari method should be taught to children, too, before they can adopt the habit of buying non-essentials. But for now, 12-year-old Pinoy kids may have to ponder on what can make them criminally liable since the House of Representatives has already approved the bill lowering the minimum age of criminal responsibility (MACR) from 15 to 12. The bill’s original version even had a lower MACR—9.

This has prompted at least one Pinoy to remember what he was focusing on at the age of 12 aside from school, studies and crushes, with his memories largely dependent on the generation he belongs to. The older Pinoy may hardly recall what he was doing when he was 12. Patintero, badminton, what else? Senior moment pa more.

Today’s 12-year-old may have to discover patintero and badminton, too, to avoid involvement in any, uh, criminal activity. And it’s not only him. The MACR in other places is even lower: Singapore, 7; Brunei, 7; Indonesia, 8; Hong Kong, 10; Malaysia, 10; England, 10; Wales, 10. For the US, it’s 7 in North Carolina, and 10 in Wisconsin, while 33 of its states have no MACR, so, does that mean zero age? Whoa.

How can a 12-year-old survive detention especially here in Pinas where detainees are packed like sardines in cells. Hay naku. Good luck na lang.

When we were 12 years old, we had a strict teacher who would touch any surface in the classroom and said, “I can feel the dust.” Meaning, we, her students, failed to clean the classroom from floor to ceiling.

We had rotary phones and no smartphones, party lines and no rave parties, telegrams and no Messenger, a TV antenna and no cable TV nor Netflix, a martial-law-controlled media and no social media.

If technological advances have made it easier for crimes to be committed, might as well go back to the Jurassic Age then. Except for that one little factor: dinosaurs. Which looked cute in “Jurassic Park.” But in real life, Brrrrr.

People do tend to reminisce about the good times in the past but who wants to use the rotary phone again? There’s this new video featuring two young boys trying to use that phone and their cluelessness amused us, the young once. Imagine using that phone in dialing your eleven-digit mobile number.

But then, there’s the slow movement that basically promotes slowing down. One example is slow food, the exact opposite of fast food. And there’s tantric sex—but that’s another story better told by Sting, who happens to be one of its ardent practitioners.

There was a time when slow was indeed the norm. When research required a library, card catalogs, and 26 thick volumes of encyclopedia. Those were the days.

Even the senior-moment learner now prefers online sources of info since going through old sets of encyclopedia may cause allergies with all the dust. Achoo!

With Kondo’s 30-book limit, those 26 volumes can allow only four more books. Darn. The bookworm has to learn to love e-books if he wants less clutter.


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TREND MAKER. Mindanao Gold Star Daily was established in 1989 to set ablaze a new meaning & flame to the local newspaper business. Throughout the years it continued its focus and interest in the rural areas & pioneered the growth of countryside journalism.

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