View Full Version : Hoarders

09-01-2009, 12:38 AM
Im watching a TV show about Hoarders.
Being a roofer i work on all kinds of homes.
I have roofed a few homes where the people were hoarders.
They all have had cats, Many cats.
None of them thought anything was wrong.
Everything was worthless, Newspapers, cardboard, coffee cans, plastic etc.
This week i have to patch another home with a older lady in it.
Her collection also goes outside and there is no where to even set up a ladder..

One hoarder was a good friend of mine.

He kept his bedroom full of his tools and even the bed,

he and his wife slept on the floor in the hallway in between piles of junk, They never thought anything of it,

Years ago i went to buy a metal Lathe but he wanted it so i let him buy it, He set it up at the foot of his bed!!!!

09-01-2009, 01:16 AM
Good enough.

09-01-2009, 03:26 AM
For many, it's related to psychological issues that can worsen with age: http://understanding_ocd.tripod.com/hoarding.html

Ron Williamson
09-01-2009, 05:11 AM
I met a guy whose wife and daughter hoarded cats.He'd had a bad stroke and was pretty powerless to change his world.
They had about 25 of the bastards and most of them used the tops of the kitchen cabinets as a litter box.
In the depths of the last recession, my partners were contracted to tear out all of his carpets and replace with hardwood.
The workers threw out their clothes after the carpet removal and cleanup.

09-01-2009, 08:37 AM
I hoard toys, money, and things from deceased family members ... and any old boat parts I can find!

09-01-2009, 08:41 AM
I know of a man with a 4 bedroom house and double garage FULL of stuff, He lives in a small caravan in the drive.

09-01-2009, 08:50 AM
Man, tough subject. A few months back a local church group asked for my help. A lady down the road had her husband pass away in his chair overnight. The rescue squad were horrified and the town got involved. Feet thick with trash so that paths were worn in like tall grass. Mold, filth and the stench was overwhelming. The woman was semi- invalid so heavy cleaning was out of the question.
Church ladys poured in and took to big dumpsters of trash out but when I pulled the siding and went looking if the building could be saved we found it full of mold. All the electrical and mechanical were wasted.
In the end it was condemned and they found her a small one bedroom prefab to put on her property and the charity got someone to help her on a regular basis.
I was told they were not always like that until age and infirmity overtook them. They were to proud to ask for help.

At least in this instance one can find the cause for decline but others? Its sad and more likely a symptom of society breaking apart at the Macro level. I am sure its always been that way but we used to help each other and now more often than not we rely on the state to do it for us.

James McMullen
09-01-2009, 08:56 AM
I have an Aunt who is like that. I think she is quite likely clinically insane, but she is enabled by her husband and children to continue the craziness. Her house is packed to the rafters with crap like stacks of old magazines, plastic tubs, jars, crates of office supplies, boxes of freeze-dried food. I haven't been to see her in years, but my mom told me that the last time she was there, you couldn't even see out some of the windows. Crazy!

Keith Wilson
09-01-2009, 09:04 AM
Yeah, an aging hippie friend of mine bought a house like that (VERY cheap) after the woman who owned it died. Except for one small area when she apparently lived, it was piled solid with stuff about 7' deep, as high as she could reach. He got a very large dumpster and filled it eleven times before he got it all cleared out. It was a pretty nice house once he was done. but my God, it was a lot of work.

It seems a fairly standard variety of dementia; people get overwhelmed, digging out gets harder and harder, and so they just stop trying, and after a while they don't notice anymore. I think it has something to do with the anonymity of living in cities, which has its good and bad points - folks don't poke into your business so much, but sometimes people who really need help get lost.

09-01-2009, 09:05 AM
Hoarding? I prefer to call it "disposal challenged":D


Milo Christensen
09-01-2009, 09:43 AM
Disposal challenged. There but for the Grace of God go I. My problem is that almost everytime I throw out something I've been "hoarding", about a week later I'm involved in a project where I say, WTF did I throw that out!

One of those quietly intense little husband/wife scenarios is about to play out in our house. New kitchen cabinets are being installed next week. Everything in the current kitchen cabinets has to come out. One of us will say to the other "Do you want to save this?" and it'll start all over again. Marilyn saves the most useless things imaginable for sentimental reasons. I save anything related to a kitchen tool, even if I haven't used that mini-sifter in 20 years, I might need it tomorrow.

L.W. Baxter
09-01-2009, 09:47 AM
I think hoarding is an expression of subsumed feelings in the collective consciousness. People are genetically repulsed by wastefulness, but that feeling is suppressed in order to function normally in a materials-rich society and only surfaces abherantly.

09-01-2009, 10:01 AM
It is a shame.. this also referring to "pack rats"
Myself I gotten into a habit of collecting old Lawnboy mowers.. I got total of 7 lawnboys sitting in a storage unit.. gathering dust...
For their weight worth in aluminium or magnesium, I soon will scrap them...

09-01-2009, 10:29 AM
For people who suffer from OCD hoarding can be related to secrecy and shame, among other things.

But here's always the anonymity of eBay!!

09-01-2009, 10:47 AM
I you look at the back issues from time to time, it's a collection. Otherwise send the Boatbuilder magazines to me. ;)

09-01-2009, 11:03 AM
I might need it tomorrow.That's my downfall right there:rolleyes:


09-01-2009, 11:45 AM
if it wont fit on a 40' sailboat I dont need it :)

09-01-2009, 12:26 PM
I remember reading about some old guy, a renter, that died and when they went to clean out his house they found the place full of rocks. Tons of them to the point where it wrecked the house.

Another story of a renter (but not a hoarder) who paid 6 months rent in advance, kept up the yard, caused no trouble at all. He paid another 6 months in advance and was an ideal renter so the landlord left him alone. One day he disappeared, so the landlord went over to the place and found the house was full of dirt, the guy had been using it for a growroom.

Paul Pless
09-01-2009, 12:44 PM
if it wont fit on a 40' sailboat I dont need it :)but your sailboat is only half that size ;):eek:

09-01-2009, 01:18 PM
but your sailboat is only half that size

That's why he needs it ALL! :D

Seriously, we have a new rule ... not used for two years = donated or tossed out! (I am the only exception in the house ... think about tools, etc.). :D

Captain Blight
09-01-2009, 03:00 PM
I think hoarding is an expression of subsumed feelings in the collective consciousness. People are genetically repulsed by wastefulness, but that feeling is suppressed in order to function normally in a materials-rich society and only surfaces abherantly.Here in the Upper Midwest there is a strong proto-Calvinist streak that nags at people, that to be in posession of a useful thing and not use it is almost as bad as throwing something useful out. I think it was greatly reinforced during the Great Depression, when anything useful was saved as it may not have been able to have been replaced. So the children of the Depression passed it on to their kids, some of whom are (or were) doing quite well and still have their house packed full of crap.

It's not a long step from a rigid frugality to simply never throwing anything at all away.

Ron Williamson
09-01-2009, 07:16 PM
Like a box full of pieces of string that are too short to save?

Bob (oh, THAT Bob)
09-01-2009, 07:36 PM
Yes, this issue is what is preventing me from the live-aboard life. My problem is that all the stuff I have is valuable (no, really), and I keep buying more, I can't pass up really good quality stuff at 5% of it's original value. I think it's rooted in my childhood, I wasn't poor but my clothes were always out of fashion and I didn't have the fun stuff that the neighbors did. I also do have minor OCD. I supposed I should seek counseling.

09-01-2009, 07:51 PM
I used to hoard things, but CRS got so bad I forgot where I put them. You know, with this CRS thing, you only need one book in your library.

09-01-2009, 09:04 PM
Ah has seed thu light...! I are a changed packrat...!

Over the past year or so I have been eBay-ing everything that I no longer want or need.
Lately I cleaned out all of the stuff in one storage locker and shut that puppy down. Then last week I called a Guy I Know to come make an offer for all of the junque in the second locker. We cleaned that locker out also, and I settled the account with the locker company. In the process of accomplishing this I also hauled out a pickup truck load of unwanted stuff from the garage, which was also purchased by The Guy. He makes a fair living placing things in auctions and flea markets.
I figure that I've now saved about nine hundred dollars a year by stopping the charges on the two lockers, and The Guy paid me nearly five hundred for stuff I would otherwise have had to throw away.
Last night I happened to be awake near dawn when the trash pick-up crew reached my curbside--I could hear their curses when they found five 55-gallon size trash bags stacked on my curb.

Lest I get too proud of myself for these cathartic undertakings I should admit that The Guy looked around my garage and said, "Hey, call me when you want to get rid of the rest of this stuff...!"
And there is the small matter of a storage loft above the studio at the college that is filled with things I haven't used nor thought about for the past twenty-five years.

My movie production equipment goes on eBay next month.

...Oh, and have I mentioned the printing presses...?
...And the lathe...?
...and the drill press...

09-01-2009, 09:33 PM
Hoarding? I just hate cleaning.

Cripes. I haul about 200# of junk mail to the recycling bins a month.

Milo Christensen
09-01-2009, 09:43 PM
Printing presses? Tell me more.

09-01-2009, 09:49 PM
And there is the small matter of a storage loft above the studio at the college that is filled with things I haven't used nor thought about for the past twenty-five years.


09-01-2009, 10:03 PM
Printing presses? Tell me more.

Mine is a treadle-operated Kelsey Star, and I'm angling on a Gordon Oldstyle.
Interested in fine art letterpress printing?
I have a line on several presses that need a good home.

09-01-2009, 10:06 PM
Oooh... Krunch,
that's scary. I may have created the Loft of Doom.
Then again it may just be a bunch of stuff that seemed valuable to me twenty-five years ago.

09-02-2009, 06:07 AM
Oooh... Krunch,
that's scary. I may have created the Loft of Doom.

LOL, I couldn't resist! :D