Monday, August 25, 2008

Nobody Will Remember Me When I Die*

I woke up the other day and realised I'm not a collector or a buff. I wish I was one or the other.

There's that show on the ABC, 'The Collectors' or 'Antiques Something' or something... can't remember, anyway, I've watched it a couple of times and envied those people who collect things. It doesn't matter if it's tourist spoons, china dolls, ashtrays, stamps, ceramic frogs or Monopoly Boards; they have a reason to shop, and they are easy to buy for, and they have a life's work, as such. The only thing I've ever collected is regrets and ex-girlfriends (the two feed each other).

Then there's people on 'Einstein Factor' who are buffs on a topic. Any topic. They know a lot about something. I don't. I know a little bit about a lot of things, but I'm not an expert on anything. I've racked my brains trying to work out what my 'special subject' is. Stagflation is one possibility. Richmond Football Club 1980-2000 is another. Maybe Shakespeare, or Greek Mytholology, but my knowledge doesn't stack up against people who have spent years studying these.

Is it too late at 39 to start collecting something, or studying something to become an 'expert' in it?

Does anyone here collect anything, and what is your Einstein Factor topic? **

* If that's not already a title of a song by Morrissey, it should be.
** Gee, my post and and questions there are all a bit ABC talkback, isn't it? I should have known better and said 'cunt' a few times.


catlick said...

Perseus I've been an acquirer rather than a collector, but having been in the second hand biz, I can tell you that three of any one thing, three owls, (sorry Ramon) teapots or anvils constitute a collection, and will attract more of the same. Especially if displayed together. So, check your stuff, and I think you'll find you qualify. Books count. Especially if there's a theme. (mine is early Greek and Roman translations)
Neural plasticity may facilitate becoming an expert. You may have passed your peak, but could possibly stack some esoterica on an existing platform.

Boogeyman said...

Three of any one thing is also a crowd, or a plot to overthrow the totalitarian government, depending on how you look at things.

As for being an expert, I will never be one, but since have an interest in many diverse topics, I like to think of myself as a jack of all trades. Though that's often used in a derogatory sense these days, in its entirety (jack of all trades, master of none, but sometimes better than a master of one) it suggests that someone with a non-expert understanding of a few disparate fields of knowledge can perhaps get insights that a narrow expert in one field might not.

And let's face it. Do you really want to be one of those constipated experts waxing lyrical about all the varieties of Edwardian porcelain?

Perseus said...

Catlick - I have a lot of books, but not of one genre, or anything as exciting as 'early Greek and Roman translations'.

I do have about ten 'tacky seascapes featuring ships in storms, purchased for under $20 from an op shop'. Maybe that's a start. Though wall space would eventually be a problem.

Boogey - you make a good point. I know a bloke who is obsessed with the JFK assasination. We all avoid him at parties.

shitbmxrider said...

seemingly, all I collect is a) Old Alfa Romeos(1 complete and 3 shells about the place), and b) BMX Bikes(3 currently in the garage)...

And specialist subject? NFI

I am a huge car-nerd, but yeah, theres a whole lotta different info involved in that

Perseus said...

Dude, I LOVED the BMX at the Olympics. It was my equal second favourite sport to watch (behind athletics, and equal with the bike road race).

What the hell will your do with Alfa shells? Watch 'em rust?

WitchOne said...

I collect food, then I rename it and eat it.

Salted Capers are "little balls of happiness".

Vanilla Bean Paste is the "paste of dreams to come".

Dried Olives are "a Moroccan essential".

And so on.

Does that count?

Apart from shoes and handbags (more shoes than handbags though).

Trinity is not my name said...

It's never too late to get more cats Perseus. Want a kitten?

Puss In Boots said...

Dude, you do not want to start collecting things. Trust me. People take it as their cue to never have to think about you for more than 5 seconds when buying a present ever again. When I was younger my obsession subject was frogs. By the time I was 18 I was absolutely sick of them, purely because everyone always gave me something to do with frogs every birthday/Christmas/whatever. It irritated me they never put any thought into the presents and just got me a frog because it was easier. I ended up with over 400 frog ornaments.

I suppose I collect Audrey Kawasaki prints now (I have 9 so far). But that sort of thing is far too expensive for people to buy for me, so now they have to put more thought into their gifts.

Boogeyman said...

It's never too late to get more cats Perseus. Want a kitten?

Of course Perseus wants more... oh, if only I could think of a double-entendre euphemism for 'cat'.

catlick said...

I do have about ten 'tacky seascapes featuring ships in storms, purchased for under $20 from an op shop'. Maybe that's a start.

That's a great start. The "anti" collection is big. Go hard on irony, embrace shabby, op-shop provenance, and hang them jammed (or Windjammered) together on a single wall.

Of course Perseus wants more... oh, if only I could think of a double-entendre euphemism for 'cat'.

"Domestic Longhair?"

patchouligirl said...

I collect heirlooms. Or rather, I inherit them and then feel obliged to keep them forever. I've got paintings, vases and a carved table from China (the 'altar' my grandparents used for their wedding, as I did), my grandmothers toaster of all things, and Jack sleeps with a toy monkey knitted by his great grandmother. His basinnet was originally his fathers (1961) but all 9 subsequent siblings and cousins went through it. I still have the dolls house my dad built me, and if I never have a daughter, it'll be there for the grandkids. I find a certain comfort in being surrounded by my ancestors possessions, as though they are still looking over me. My topic would be cooking, particularly of the 'surprise chef' variety.

Ramon Insertnamehere said...

if only I could think of a double-entendre euphemism for 'cat'.

"Tailess Manx"?

Boogeyman said...

Perseus needs more... Devon Rex.

Hur hur. Devon Rex. Hur hur.

Hmmm. Needs more work.

Ramon Insertnamehere said...

You're a sick, sick man, Boogey.

squib said...

I don't collect things and although I get obsessed with pet topics I only get superficially obsessed

However once I had a stepdad from Tasmania and we went to Tasmania once and we went to visit his mum and she was this mad knitter of gnomes. She had like 3000 of these knitted gnomes crammed in her house

And I really wanted one cos I was a kid and do you think she gave me one? She did not!

WitchOne said...

Pers, I read your post to my mother and she is similar, a collector of useless information. However, after hearing your post she thinks you can help each other, you collect regrets and ex girlfriends, she'd like to collect toy boys. You start her collection and she'll be happy to complete yours.

Perseus said...

You're pimping out your mum, Witchie? That's disgraceful.

Is she hot?

WitchOne said...

Meh, Mum can take care of herself.

Hell yeah she's hot, she looks just like me!

Or is that I look just like her? Whatever!!

eat my shorts said...

I'm going to start collecting the notes students pass to each other in my classes (it's easier getting away with taking those as opposed to their mobile phones). There's some juicy stuff in those things, BTW.