Safety in Numbers
I once wrote a stock joke about hoarding—
The only difference between
a hoarder and a collector is shelving.
It gets some laughs, and
and became one of my top tweets (28,209 and counting).
Of course, I’ve watched
the hoarding shows too, acted the voyeur
we all seem to be,
thanks to reality TV and the squalid ruins
of our multi-chambered hearts,
but I already know what can happen. The erstwhile suitor
brings his fiance, finally,
into the mess, gives her a “walking” tour over
the archeological mounds
of papers, bags, clothes, cereal boxes, old computer
hardware. That ends
badly—a real shocker, right? Secrets help too.
And digital “collections”—
16,683 iTunes, 15,032 iPhotos, 1,205 iBooks, neverending
Wish Lists on neverending
Inspired-By-Your-Browsing-History sites. But we all
know too there’s safety in kindergarten
numbers—the counting numbers, which start with 1
and quickly become 2, not
the whole numbers, which start with that terrifying 0
and quickly become
the buried city, the covered hole, from which
we cannot dig ourselves out.