As a person who gets easily overwhelmed by, well, everything, I find lists and guides that, according to a random person, I should buy, read, eat or make love to. OK, maybe not the last one.
This is especially true if I’m looking to buy something. As many of you know, I am both a collector of everything and a man who cries a lot. I think this makes me the perfect person to make a guide of items everyone should have in their home, apartment or bomb shelter. Hey, no judging here.
To keep the hate mail and the amount of angry Asians chasing me with bamboo torches to a minimum, I am going to be vague and broad. In order to not scare anyone off screaming in absolute horror, I have decided not to recommend anything that may or may not suggest that you should buy a Michelle Branch CD. Or any female pop star from the early 2000s. Sorry, Avril. You’re a lovely person, but it’s complicated.
Let’s get started. Shall we?
Any piece of art that’s not purchased from Wal-Mart, Target or any store where you can buy artwork, hot dogs and Barbie dolls in one shipping trip.
I know everyone is sick and tired of people singing the praises of Etsy for affordable handmade items, but you can’t beat Etsy if you want affordable art. There is, of course, the option of brushing random strokes of black paint on piece of cardboard and duct taping them on the walls. Don’t mind the wrinkles. It just adds character.
Long-time readers of this blog are familiar with these animal mask illustrations. If you were to ask what my style is, I would just slightly nod my head and point my finger to them. Unfortunately, the person I got these from is no longer selling on Etsy.
Here are examples of artwork you can purchase though.
A collectible from your favorite TV show, movie or other interest
I am a big TV fan, so as a result I have a lot of collectibles from my favorite TV shows, namely Breaking Bad, Big Bang Theory and, of course, Dexter. Some people might say that it’s childish to display action figures and bobble heads you’re an adult, but what exactly do they expect adults to display? Wooden bowls with fake fruit, miniature dog statues made of jade and tall clear vases with flowers that will die in two days? No thank you. I’m sorry, but brown withered petals scattered on a table is not the look I’m going for.
If you do not have a favorite movie or TV show, don’t fret. You can get something related to an interest. Perhaps you are fond of cats. If that’s the case, why not get a crazy cat lady action figure?
OK. Maybe you can just get a little owl figurine.
A practical item you can both display and use
I am, of course, not suggesting that you just put a kitchen knife on your coffee table. This is not a guide to how to scare off guests the second they come in.
For me, I have a compass sitting on a side table. It’s only a $5 cheapo from Wal-Mart. Yes, I don’t need compass to find my way to the bathroom, but if I ever decide to, you know, be out of character and go on a long, dangerous hike in the woods, at least it’s there.
A stack of books
I know we’re in the digital age, and many of you are using an electronic device of some kind for your book-ish needs. Not I. After all, I am still living as if it’s 2004.
With that aid, I still read books the old-fashioned way, and I just like holding a book in my hand and flipping through the pages. What am I supposed to do with a tablet or Kindle. Wave it as if I don’t care? Plus, stacking tablets just doesn’t have the same feeling as a stack of books. A stack of books says “I read. So?” A stack of tablet says “Yeah…you’re going to rob me, aren’t you?”
A vase, a glass bowl, a bottle, or something else pretty to display that makes you look like an actual adult who doesn’t decorate with Breaking Bad bobble heads, even though you do
Now, this is actually something that most adults would actually display in their apartment. I am not one who follows the crowd. As I’ve said many times before, I have a disposable phone, and I like it. I have to be honest, though, I like having something nice and pretty on a table. And sometimes it’s nice to have something that doesn’t remind you of a bald Bryan Cranston.