Moving Day




“Who else could it be?”

With my old buddy Stan, one can never be sure. It’s not that someone else might answer his phone, which is entirely possible, rather it is more a matter of which Stan will pick up.

And with his mercurial personality, that varies by the moment.

Considering that I hadn’t spoken with him in months, it was imperative that I get a feel for which Stan I was talking to before imparting the big news.

“I called to tell you something.”


“We sold our house.”

It didn’t seem to phase him.

“And I need to borrow your truck and trailer to move.”


So now I knew who I was talking to, the Stan who fails to understand the implications of very simple things.




You see, eight years ago when we moved into our country home, I acquired a large empty shed. I still have the shed, but it is not empty and what is in there are not things I ever wanted to be there.

My buddy Stan contributed the largest share – usually by dropping things of dubious origin off in the middle of the night and my wife contributed the remainder – usually after saying, “I can’t bear to throw this away, but I don’t want to look at it.”

Which raised several dilemmas:

1) Problem 1: How to stuff the contents of a 40′ X 80′ shed into a 8′ X 53′ trailer.

Solution: ordering the largest roll-off dumpster one can find.

2) Problem 2: Who is going to help?

Solution: ask those whose stuff it is to help.

3) Problem 3: What goes into the trailer and what goes into the dumpster?

Solution: problem solved by those whose stuff it is refusing to help.

So I established my own criteria:

a) If it was broken, toss it.

b) If it was forgotten about, forget about it and toss it.

c) If the question, “MY GOD, WHY DID YOU THROW THAT AWAY?” cannot be answered with a shrug, put it in the trailer.

d) If it is mechanical yet still growls or hisses when you approach, it is probably Stan’s and will have to decide on its own where it wishes to reside.

Lastly, allow me to describe the sheer joy of filling the largest roll-off dumpster that one can find.

I hope heaven is half as good.






“I filled the trailer with your stuff.”

“Great, just put it in your new shed.”

“Uh……,I guess you didn’t hear, but we downsized to a townhouse. There is no shed.”

“So where are you going to put it?”

“I found the perfect place.”


“At the end of your driveway.”

Author: Almost Iowa

32 thoughts on “Moving Day”

  1. You’re moving away from the mosquito refuge?? There is something appealing about a townhouse though. Have fun fitting all your “stuff,” Greg. And best of luck with the move. 🙂

  2. Best wishes in your new abode and hope none of the junk tracks you down. My husband has gotten to the point where he finally needs all the junk he got rid of years ago. Now he vows to keep everything!

  3. I love the idea of junk animate enough to decide where IT wants to live.
    Hope it chooses Stan’s place.
    Happy moving. Hope all is well with you & the fam!

    1. Tell him that a shady neighbor has been stashing stolen goods in his shed. It will force him to go through the mess and predictably toss out anything he doesn’t recognize. That tactic is usually good for about half.

    1. I wouldn’t withhold a forwarding address from Stan. He has been my friend since third grade….. but no one says I have to leave him the right one.

  4. Hope the move is a happy one. We downsized years ago, and we went through everything that I had saved for family members only to be told – I don’t want that, so out it went to a variety of charities. I got rid of more than I kept that’s for sure. If I’d only known Stan’s address it would have been great to drop it off there. 🙂

    1. Our children and grandkids hide when we show up to avoid “Grandma’s giveaways.”

      So, we are going to hold a huge garage sale with all the proceeds going to cancer research and anything that remains will go to either the GoodWill or the dumpster.

  5. Congrats on your move! And that is a brilliant way to get rid of stuff you don’t want…give it back to those who gave it to you, if you can’t actually throw it away. Whether they agree to take it or not.

    1. Like I told Judy, a lot of stuff will go to a garage sale with the proceeds going to charity and the remainder either to Goodwill or the dumpster.

        1. Very heavy with a 300 lb alarm that chews nails. I found it in the back of the shed, it is one of the few things Stan left that I get along with.

    1. I will miss the country life a lot. I love walking around the Minnesota Mosquito Refuge, but town is not that far away, and we will live on the edge of town, so it is mere minutes by foot onto country roads.

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