I think I might have a problem. I looked at my pantry recently and realized, with fascination, that I own a metropolis of teas. Check it out. It’s like the opening scene to a film set in New York. But with tea. I had to give away all my tea when we moved which means I’ve gathered all of this in just a few months. I didn’t even notice it happening.
There are some things I just cannot seem to get enough of. Tea being one of them. Books too. Clearly I go a bit doolally for books, although I’m such a library go-er that I buy a lot less than I used to and love to give books away. [Do I sound like I am in recovery?] I won’t mention how without a stack of books near the bed I feel anxious…and then there’s my kids books buying craziness… and how I sometimes colour-arrange my collection. That’s not nuts at all. Right? I can reassure you that I am no neat freak (truly, I can be a piglet. No offence to swine.) but I just luuurve those books like babies. A metropolis of tea, a rainbow of books, a clutch of neuroses…
Tea, books, then… scarves. How do I explain my thing with scarves? I dunno. I just love them. The colours, the feel of them, how they sort of keep you…safe? I have one that is a loop that I think trendy fashion people (not me) call an “infinity scarf”. Anyway, it’s made with scottish wool and has stripes and I got it from Anthropologie which makes me feel….hip? (pah!)…or something. I would rescue it in a fire. Checklist: “Family members; 1, 2 and 3, check to make sure I’m wearing clothes, ooooh, loopy scarf thingy…” You know, just the essentials.
(note that in this photo the tag is showing. That’s how hip I am. That’s how I roll.)
I wonder if I am a collector? Does the word “collector” make obsessive tendencies more palatable?
Perhaps it only works for things and my tendencies run deeper than that. I have an obsessive tendency with thoughts or ideas or projects too. Sometimes I just can’t stop until it is done and that can be four in the morning. Like when I made this video invite for B1’s birthday. I never made another stop-motion thing again (yet? since?) but it was good fun, even at an obsessive hour like 2am. I get fixated on ideas and mesmorised by concepts. Currently I am mad about this show, Girls, which is hilariously funny and watch-through-your-fingers awkward (the main character is called Hannah and she is a writer. I love her. Narcissism? Alright, I’ll take a dose of that too). I go through rashes of reading books about certain subjects or set in certain places. I worry over a worry until it’s worn thin. Every month I have at least one night of nasty insomnia and the only cure is to write, write, write.
Perhaps I have chosen the perfect career for me. Writing demands a certain amount of obsessiveness, don’t you think? The dogged (foolish some would say) determination to take up writing a novel and then keep at it until it’s done. Diving into your subject matter, your characters, sometimes almost drowning in your research. You need to be neck deep. You need to be in love with it. You need to pick it up where you left off, sometimes days or weeks ago when you’ve got other responsibilities, and still get drawn in. Writing and me – we’re like two broken, crazy lovers.
This “never enough” thing can drive me to despair sometimes but at other times it helps. I don’t think I would give it up, this determined, fixated, obsessive attribute, which is ironic and fitting I guess – not being able to let go of my not letting go?? But surely, surely, I am not alone. Do you have obsessive tendencies? What is it that you just can’t get enough of?
Tell us, tell us about your slightly shameful crazy bits and we cross-our-hearts promise not to think any less of you.
HUGS, Hannah x
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