So Much Stuff, So Little Garage

Cluttered garage

Our house, like most of our neighbors’ houses, has a side-facing garage. From the front, the garage looks like just another room of the house, all pretty siding and curtained windows.

For some people, it’s okay to have a front-facing garage. You know the ones… they have neat shelves. Evenly parked cars. Clean floors. Maybe-maybe-a well-positioned toy or two. I’ve seen these garages. And, oh, how I envy them.

As for ours, well… did you ever notice that “garage” is one letter away from “garbage?” That’s no coincidence. Our automobile abode is jam-packed with stuff that isn’t automotive at all. (Consider it an undesirable side effect of being married to a contractor.)

You might have read Greg Bengel’s story on garage safety. It’s a good reminder about lots of stuff that’s not safe—including plenty of things you might’ve thought were a-ok. (Seriously, guys… step away from the turkey fryer!)

Inspired by the article, I took a deep breath, a few stiff swigs of coffee and allowed myself to be sucked into the vortex. The good news is that the hazards in the article weren’t there. (Whew.)

But I uncovered a few others that were risky in not-so-“insurancey” ways. Here they are:

The discovery: About 30 pairs of old skis, collected by the husband to make custom Adirondack chairs.
The danger: An assault to the senses (ow, LOUD!) when I accidentally knocked them all down like dominos.

The discovery: A mix tape (remember those?) from an old boyfriend whose breakup I didn’t take well.
The danger: Fardo* for my 24-year-old self.

The discovery: A potato that the kids insisted on keeping because they thought looked like a derrière. (Confession: They were right.)
The danger: Lots of sophomoric butt jokes after I showed it to them.

The discovery: Some old cans of diet soda.
The danger: Flatness. Freshness dating is for real, folks.

The discovery: Six bags full of empty soda cans.
The danger: No risk—just a windfall of about five bucks after we hit the recycling center. (Score! Now I can buy some soda to replace the flat stuff.)

I finally decided to call it a day, kick back with some (fizzy) soda and leave the rest for later. Or perhaps even for someone else to tackle, hint hint.

I may not have transformed the garage into a front-faceable beauty, but at least I cleared some walking paths, indulged in some nostalgia and gained some peace of mind knowing everything was pretty darn safe.

Vanessa Paris works in Target Marketing at Erie Insurance. Watch the local classifieds for her garage sale this summer.

* The feeling of embarrassment you have for someone when they can’t feel embarrassed for him or herself.

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