It’s what you do when you don’t have to do anything at all, that makes you what you are when it’s too late to do anything about it.

–R.J. Gary, Texas Utilities

Having things to do and places to go this morning, I’ll just post this and run.


I lost 106 pounds

Today. For twenty-five bucks.

At Curbside Data Control.   I drove there with four full boxes of papers to shred, the result of my Big Scan (and sort) project.

Boxes 2 shred

The nice folks at Curbside dumped all the paper into a locked bin, weighed it (106 pounds), rolled it off to the shredder and issued me a certificate of destruction.

Meanwhile, back at the condo, I’ve reclaimed a corner in the study, which last week was stacked high with boxes of papers and books.

Before corner

Now it’s blessedly empty.

After corner

I’m sure the feng shui is improved.

Will I need a passport?


 Home Ec 1948

 The past is a foreign country; they do things differently there.

—– L. P. Hartley

No scanners, or shredders, not so many lawyers per capita, and identity theft not aided by computers.

After three full days slogging away at The Big Scan, I’m down to the paydirt of old personal and family letters and pictures.  Including the one above – and I’m not in it.  I’m probably older than you, but not that old.

The picture is of a tailoring course taught by the Home Ec teacher at a public high school in the late 1940’s “for anyone interested.”

Interesting picture.  There could be a story there.  Or stories.  No passport required.

Hold the ice, the fire – and the paperwork

It isn’t necessary to imagine the world ending in fire or ice. There are two other possibilities: one is paperwork, and the other is nostalgia.

——-Frank Zappa


I have too many pieces of paper in my house. They are corralled into boxes or file folders, pending The Big Scan – a project I thought would be finished by now. TBS means I use my lovely little Fujitsu ScanSnap S500 scanner (pictured closed and opened – scroll down for the other photo) to scan all those documents I wish to retain, after which I can recycle or shred almost all of the hard copies. I will end up with only a storage box or two of paper – not bad for a lifetime as a middle-class American homeowner working in a paper-based profession.

But as we know, life is what happens while we’re making other plans. In this case:

  • The new desktop PC was acquired in March and runs Windows Vista.
  • The Fujitsu scanner – acquired in the days of Windows XP – wouldn’t work with the new PC without new Vista drivers and software.
  • Fujitsu didn’t release the Vista updates until July.
  • In July I downloaded and installed the ScanSnap Vista updates – just before the new PC suffered a hard drive failure.


Now the PC’s home with a new hard drive, the scanner is working, and yesterday Continue reading