The Last Things to Go

Things have been quiet on the blog because things are tumultuous at Fangs and Clause Central. We’re preparing to move. This Saturday. I’ve been quietly packing for weeks. It’s a game of “What can I live without?” Clearly I’m a terrible poet, because my poetry books went into boxes a month ago. What do I still have around me as I edit on the floor of a house equipped solely with a mattress and a coffeepot?

1. The APA manual. I know, I know, I’ve always said that I’m a Chicago girl, and I am. But I have a functional working knowledge of Chicago and am confident in my ability to fake it (and I do have my copy of Chicago upstairs in an open box), but my knowledge of APA is limited to citations and head levels, and even those I have to recheck.

2. My research books. I’m writing a nonfiction project about something I know little about. All books I think I might need are sitting upstairs nestled next to my Chicago Manual of Style in an open box.

3. My cats. They’re not allowed in the new house until the floor has been polyurethaned.

4. My paperwork. I know if I move my internet info/tax returns/work contracts that I’ll need them desperately and will be unable to find them.

This is a list of my insecurities. I still have the things around me that I do not have confidence in. They are my notes I take into an open book test. My paperwork is a dragon that I fear to prod too hard in case it wakes up. My style manuals are material proof to back me up in editorial decisions, as if people are challenging me at every turn, which they aren’t.

And you can pry them all from my cold dead hands.

What’s the last thing you put in a box?



9 responses to “The Last Things to Go

  1. Tampons. Tampons go last in the box. (there’s a joke in there somewhere but I can’t find it.)

    This was a fun exercise – there is shockingly little in my life that I couldn’t live without. It kind of makes me want to go home and throw everything out the window.

  2. I almost just said, “a dick!” Because you said, “box.” And then I remembered I’m not actually twelve.


    Um, yes. It’s actually been so long since I’ve packed up all my housewares in boxes that I don’t even know. [The last several years, my moves have been of the “throw everything haphazardly into the car and go” variety.] But I’d have to say the last things that could be packed would be my laptop, the internet connection, and a bottle of booze.

    And my tattered poster of Tom Selleck.


  3. Want to borrow my APA 6th? Just bought it last week (I’d be embarrassed to tell you how much it cost, because I don’t live in your fair land, and oh-my-god it’s an expensive slim volume, but expensive enough that no one should ever buy it. Lending’s good enough.). Let me know, I can looks things up. But, considering my blog-moniker, you should probably be guarded in heeding my interpretations.

    Oh, and are you sure about polyurethane? I am in favour of oiling old wood. I’ve used polyurethane in an old house i lived in and was sorry I did…

    • There’s some kind of corn-based poly that the young man found that he used downstairs. He didn’t see small fairies dancing around him like you do when you use oil-based polyurethane; but it seemed to have worked anyway.

      APA is expensive here for a little paperback (that last reprint to correct eighteen pages of errors must have been expensive). But I couldn’t live without it by my side. See above about insecurities.

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