It’s spring cleaning time here in my neighborhood. The city invites us to dump huge piles of large trash items out on the curb, and they come around with dump trucks and a scoop to haul it all away. Sometimes we play trash BINGO looking for the most unusual items. This year there are fewer broken toilets and more kitchen items. It’s hard for me to throw away anything that has potential to be useful to someone else, but I’m never organized enough to have a yard sale or take things to a drop-off location. Fortunately we have people who drive around and pick thru the piles of trash for things they’ll either clean and use or resell. It has taken me years to amass what I have in storage, and I can’t just wipe it all out in a weekend. I consider it a victory to eliminate a stack of old magazines and regain a single shelf in the garage.
While spring brings the promise of new life, it seems like many other things around me are coming to an end.
Free Realms is shutting down. I might have mentioned the game here in a post long ago. It was an online game with quests aimed at a younger audience. I enjoyed it more as a virtual world to explore rather than the MMO aspects with battles and trading cards and shops. It was free-to-play if you never bought the in-game extras. It’s a dying business model.
Television Without Pity (TWoP) is shutting down. I might have mentioned the website in the past, for its forums and snarky articles. Some of their recaps were amazing works of creative and expressive writing. The parent company has no plans to maintain an archive, so read (and download) what you can this week. Many of the staff (mostly freelance part-timers) have posted about how the site is what gave them a start as professional writers. They were paid, but the site content was free to access, with ads pushed to the edges. It’s a dying business model.
My personal experiment with writing has taken a detour, mainly down a dead-end path. I still enjoy discussions about writing, and I still play out scenes with the characters in my novel, but I don’t sit down to write the actual words. I have discovered a lot about myself and my abilities over the years with NaNoWriMo and my local writers group. Mostly I’ve learned that I do not have a passion for writing. There is nothing wrong with accepting that and moving on.
A local movie theater is shutting down. The lease ended, and the property owners are turning the site over to a redevelopment group who feels there is no market for a single large screen. (It’s a dying business model?) There is a petition to save the domes or at least the oldest building in the cluster, but even as an historic preservation site only the dome would remain, with the interior repurposed for anything other than motion pictures.
And the list goes on. My friends have sold their house and are embarking on early retirement. Can we really be that old? I remember helping them move from an apartment to a small starter home decades ago, then move again when they bought the large house on the hill years later. We saw less of each other after that, because it was an inconvenient distance, but we enjoyed many “date nights” for Scrabble and cards and catching up. Now they have a plan to travel the country in an RV. They put some furniture into storage, so they must expect to settle down again in the future. I can’t image where they will end up, but it will probably be too far away for game nights.
In other news about endings, my cat was well into her nineteenth year of life when she had a stroke. She had been doing poorly even before that, waking me up every night and needing a lot of attention. The stroke left her too weak to use the litter box or stand at her food bowls. After two days, we decided it was time to let her go. Her things will go into storage, not the curb.
Now I find myself no longer tethered to the house. I can get a full night of uninterrupted sleep now, too. This led me to think about going back to work again, not just for money like the cashier job but something to use my computer talents and interests. I quickly found what I think might be a perfect fit, and I have a job interview scheduled for tomorrow.
Tomorrow is a good time to start another chapter.