Sunday, March 1, 2009

The Mystery of the Tin

One day I saw a white tin that had been sitting in our closet for a long time. There is nothing that could have prepared me for what I saw that day. The items you are about to see are assembled in such a random, logic-free way that it baffles the mind. I cannot find any connecting thread between them and half of the items I have no idea why I would even keep. Many of them possess no utility in the future, no sentimental value nor monetary value.

When I opened the tin, this is what I saw-

Here's an inventory of the tin:
-1 packet of paper made from banana fiber
-1 marble memo pocket notebook
-1 Memorex cd case
-1 Unit (in the style of OP Ivy) patch
-1 TI-30x solar powered calculator
-1 piece of petrified wood
-1 charger looking device
-1 empty cassette case
-1 YAC officer lanyard
-1 plug thing
-1 punk flyer for Life Rocks!
-35 Directionality Cards (for teaching)
-1 holographic pog slammer
-1 Crabapple Academy pen
-2 protractors (one semicircle and one triangle)
-1 weird wood thing I have no idea of its purpose
-1 swiss army pocketknife
-1 book of matches
-1 index card
-1 set of post-it note
-1 set of wires

Read more!

At first glance, it seemed as if it was a container of keepsakes, tucked away to invoke feelings of nostalgia. But quickly it becomes obvious that it's not that simple. For starters, there are plenty of non-sentimental things that were in this tin-
I don't even know what this is for. Definitely not something to preserve memories.

This calculator holds no significance to me whatsoever. It definitely wasn't the calculator I had in high school or college, so it doesn't hold emotional weight in even the most abstract sense.

Here's some more random antiquated electronic stuff. Some wire that I don't think I'll ever use.

There are a few things that I found that might be keepsakes, like some petrified wood which I can't remember getting. I'm thinking it's from the Petrified Forest , but then again I remember it being such a big deal to take things from there and my parents being pretty serious about us not snagging any for ourselves. There's also this little notebook, but I only wrote in 4 pages of it, mostly mundane things like grocery lists.

The one thing that could definitely be considered sentimental is a mixed tape from my good friend Amir. It's funny looking at the playlist-
Footsteps- Pearl Jam
One of my Lies- Green Day
Dominated Love Slave- Green Day
True Colors- Phil Collins
Crash Into Me- Dave Matthews Band
Lover Lay Down- Dave Matthews Band
Tripping Billies- Dave Matthews Band
Jimi Thing- Dave Matthews Band
Acoustic Medley- Bob Marley
Wishlist- Pearl Jam
Generator- Bad Religion
I Want to Conquer the World- Bad Religion
Saw Red- Sublime
Foolish Fool- Sublime
Mary/Big Salty Hans- Sublime

That must have been when we first became friends because of the lack of good bands on there. I HATE Dave Matthews. We can see that he is just beginning to dabble in punk, which was our staple growing up (well and I listened to a lot of ska....)

It's totally bizarre. There's also the small grouping of office supply related items. The calculator, as mentioned, the protactors, the single index card, a pen... But for one, none of them are really things I'd ever use. I already have several calculators. A single index card, really? Why would I keep that?!?! and the almost used up post-it notes? And two protractors. I never use a protractor ever. I never ever need to measure angles for anything in my life except when I am teaching Math at school.

Going off themes though, I could organize them into some categories.

-things to write on: 4
-things to help calculate stuff: 3
-punk related: 2 1/2 (the mixed tape kind of counts)
-weird electronic paraphernalia- 4
-misc. items whose function is unknown- 3

Another impressive fact that adds to the odd nature of this find is where these things came from. The banana paper came from Costa Rica and I took the directionality cards to Mexico for my assignment teaching English. Add that to the United States and we have three countries represented. And neither the banana paper or cards I particularly care about!!

And that's what makes this so puzzling. So many items in here are things I care nothing about. Take for example, the punk flyer. I never went to this show. It was the Shorebirds with Life Rocks! It would have been fun and wanted to go, but I didn't care that much about missing it. I've had in my possessions hundreds of punk flyers and I don't think I have any of them anymore. Why on Earth did I keep this one?!?!?

There is one item that I was really excited to find- the metal slammer used in the game Pogs with the holographic skull on it. You would use the slammer to flip pogs over. The player was able to keep whichever pogs they successfully flipped over (and consequentially lost all the ones that didn't flip). That slammer was sweet! Alas, just as my slammer and I were discovering our amazing power together the game went out of style and I was left with this hunk of metal. At least the hunk of metal had a cool holographic skull!!

So the mystery lives on. I'm going to keep every item in there, just as I found it because it seems amazing that so many unrelated items could find themselves in the same place. I don't remember packing that tin at all. Did my mom just throw whatever was left in my bedroom into the tin? Was it put together hastily as I moved somewhere? I cannot say. If I find out, I will definitely make another post that people won't read. Ha!


eleanor said...

I think I remember keeping that flyer and maybe the unity patch is also mine. maybe mom threw it together from crap we left in the basement?

Matthew Pepper said...

The Skull Holorgram is actually a Pog Slammer very cool i used to have one with a t-rex in it when i was a kid