Saturday, May 30, 2015

Car Chaos

Yesterday was a beautiful day. The cold I came down with this week has been dragging on, so while I felt fairly energetic, I figured I better not expose myself to people who hadn't already come in contact with my germs.

Plenty of projects at home to take care of, I thought, and decided to tackle a big one: cleaning out my car.

As I believe I have mentioned before in this blog, I am a messy person. A chaos muppet. When faced with a clean-up job, I procrastinate. I doubt my car has been truly cleaned in a couple of years. Sure, I've loaded some things into it and unloaded others, but emptying it out to the floor mats just doesn't happen very often.

And, when you take into account that I have moved 3 times in the last 14 months, never fully packing or unpacking for any of those moves, you might have some idea of the strange assortment of things that had gotten forgotten, abandoned, eaten, drunken, neglected, stranded and/or ground to dust in my car.

Or do you?

Did I, even?

Not really. And so, to entertain myself during the boring task of cleaning out my car yesterday, I took an inventory of everything that was in there.

I find it a shockingly and hilariously long and varied list – with some of the items too numerous for individual mention graphed in a bar chart for your convenience – as an extra treat if you make it all the way to the end of this post. 

Here, for your entertainment and enlightenment, starting at the trunk and working counter-clockwise, follows a list of the contents of my car on May 29, 2015:


  • 1 half of a large garbage bag of paper to be recycled (from my move out of my winter rental a month ago)
  • A basket with the remnants of my land-warming toast (glasses, sparkling wine wrapper, etc, from May 16)

  • 1 cardboard tube from a bottle of 10-year-old Irish whiskey
  • 1 unopened box of Kleenex (in the plastic wrapping in which it was sold along with 5 other boxes, many months ago)
  • 2 rolls of paper towel in their wrappings
  • 2 stone book ends
  • My purse
  • 1 undergarment, 3 socks and a t-shirt
  • 1 bag of used books to be donated to the Waldorf School book sale
  • 1 bottle shampoo
  • 1 bottle conditioner
  • 1 guitar stand
  • 1 string of fairy lights
  • 2 Eco-friendly reusable produce bags
  • 1 uneaten bag of Jelly Tots (which were immediately eaten)
  • 1 empty (and punctured) bottle of sunscreen
  • 1 container used to pour water into my steam cleaner
  • 1 hot pink skate guard
  • The plastic cover from a stack of blank DVDs containing my old glasses, hollyhock seeds, a short capo, dead batteries, used stamps for donation to the Lion's Club and other detritus.

  • 1 copy of The Pocket Rumi
  • Peppermint foot lotion
  • 7 bungie cords (assorted lengths)
  • 2 packages of beads and one of shepherds hooks to make earrings
  • 1 ball of sock yarn
  • 1 pair of thread snips ("antique" ones which have been in my family for years)
  • 1 defunct stick of deodorant
  • A scattering of loose coffee beans
  • 1 bag of assorted rug hooking supplies
  • The Little River Folk Society's banner
  • 1 empty clementine crate
  • 1 lighter
  • 1 bag containing hand-me-down cat food from someone's finicky cat
  • 1 pad of paper
  • 1 pink owl barrette 
  • 1 random L-shaped piece of transparent acrylic that says "Personal Stamp Exchange"
  • 1 drug store bag containing foam ear plugs and a defunct Lipsyl
  • 1 obsolete Canadian Tire Advantage card
  • Empty packaging from some kind of gift cards
  • A ziploc bag full of Chimes Ginger Chews
  • The top of a tea tin (the tin, lidless and empty, is in my kitchen)
  • 1 roll of green masking tape
  • 1 flattened cardboard box
  • 1 scrap piece of 3/8 inch plywood
  • 1 random bit of wood

  • 1 porn DVD (title withheld) that a hilarious friend of mine found lying on the street in Shelburne and left in my car as a hilarious joke (I didn't find it for months – and thought someone completely different had left it in my car – AWKWARD!)
  • 1 empty paper potato bag
  • 1 piece of driftwood
  • 3 copies of my most recent CD, Blackbirds
  • 1 wrapper from a ball of mozzarella (What the–?)
  • Shattered fragments of mussel shell
  • 1 (losing) bingo scratch card
  • 2 black plastic bottoms from reusable shopping bags (one of them badly torn)
  • 2 pieces of metal and 2 pieces of plastic with no known use
Mystery metal and plastic bits

  • 2 toy "baseball" bats - one red, one blue
  • 1 eyeglass case, containing my "old" sunglasses
  • 1 loonie, 3 quarters, 2 dimes


  • 6 Blue beer bottles
  • Several dozen quilting magazines, looking for a new home
  • 1 Printer drum for recycling
  • 1 Yoga bag containing 2 socks and nothing else
  • 2 yoga mats
  • 3 origami cranes: yellow, pink, orange 
  • 1 bag from The Source containing two batteries for my guitar tuner
  • 1 surplus phone I've been meaning to give to friends every time I've seen them over the past three weeks
  • 3 pieces of throw rug undermatting
  • Another undergarment
  • Another t-shirt
  • Paperwork from my recent land purchase
  • The business card of buddy at the department of transportation
  • 1 new package of blue-tack
  • 1 dishcloth
  • The USB and power cable from the printer I dropped off as e-waste last week
  • 1 never-worn scarf that I've been meaning to find a home for
  • 1 hoodie
  • 1 unopened package of guitar strings
  • 2 Hair elastics
  • 1 Box of buttons handed down to me by my mom
  • 1 eyeglass case (empty)
  • Another undergarment
  • 1 mitten
  • 1 unopened package of what I still think of as "typewriter" paper (100% recycled)
  • 1 plastic bag containing a sweater, a skirt, a package of earring backs, a Ziploc bag full of bay leaves, a dish scrubber and some unopened mail from 6 or 8 months ago (I have not idea how these items come to be in the same plastic bag)
  • A bag from my last gig containing CDs, a patch cord and some general flotsam
  • ANOTHER undergarment
  • 1 plastic knife
  • 1 broken windshield wiper and the packaging – and assorted unnecessary spare fasteners – from the new wiper
  • 1 empty, clean sauerkraut carton (don't ask!)
  • 1 copy of Canada's food guide
  • 1 empty, flattened arrowroot cookie box
  • 1 Tupperware container that belongs to the mom of one of my best friends from high school (which I have been meaning to drop back to her ever since I cleaned it out after enjoying BBQ leftovers late last summer)
  • 1 seemingly clean Ziploc container inside a very dirty, sticky plastic bag
  • The packaging for a 2 terabyte external drive
  • 1 half-empty box of Twinings orange, mango and cinnamon tea
  • 1 tuner pedal
  • 1 dime


  • Something that used to be fruit - it looks like it might have once been a pear or apple (I'll spare you the indignity of a photo)
  • 1 emergency multi tool in unopenable packaging (the joke is you'd need one of those multi-tools to get it open)
  • 1 map of NS
  • 1 thank you card written from my mother to my then-boyfriend
  • 1 battered William and Kate "collectible" postcard (I have NO idea where this came from)
  • 1 unopened box of official Scrabble scorecards
  • 1 container of Purel
  • 1 tin of ginger mints
  • 1 empty envelope
  • 1 folding fan
  • 2 twonies, 3 quarters, 1 dime, 1 nickel and 2 pennies

FRONT SEAT – DRIVER'S SIDE (in, around and under):

  • 1 completely intact Remembrance Day poppy
  • 1 Hair elastic
  • The decimated remnants of the cardboard floor mat the Rust Check guys put there three months ago 
  • 1 pair foam ear plugs in a plastic case
  • 1 loonie, at least, I think it's a loonie:
  • It is a loonie! I shined it up with a little Coca Cola this morning


  • 14 CDs and/or cd cases, mostly mismatched
  • 1 Stick deodorant
  • 1 Package of clasps for making necklaces
  • Expired throat lozenges and cold medication
  • 1 Empty, and somewhat crushed, paper wrapper from a roll of loonies
  • 1 Package of thumbtacks
  • 1 Small wooden figurine of an orange cat
  • My wallet
  • 1 orange sharpie
  • What appears to be a solar universal phone charger - I did not remember that I had this and can think of so many times that it would have been useful over the past four years. 
  • 1 roll of transparent Scotch tape
  • 1 unopened eyeglass cleaning kit
  • Defunct air freshener 
  • 1 copy of Edgar Allen Poe's The Murders in the Rue Morgue


  • 1 Broken hand fan
  • 2 Small ziploc containers, one badly cracked (clean)
  • 1 Pyrex food container with plastic lid (clean)
  • 1 Bag containing an unfinished crochet project
  • 1 "Frankenspanker"

  • 1 Microphone "pop" screen
  • 1 pillowcase 
  • 1 small bag containing odd socks
  • 1 piece of drycleaner's plastic containing one sock (Hunh?)
  • 1 mason jar
  • 1 facecloth
  • 1 literary journal
  • 2 empty cardboard boxes which used to contain tea bags
  • 1 long lost cookie
  • 1 cordless phone
  • 1 plastic cap of a USB thumb drive (I think I lost the drive a while ago)
  • 1 quarter, 1 dime


And now my car is basically empty. Here's photographic proof of the (almost entirely) empty trunk:
As long as this post was, there was still a fair bit more stuff that I found in my car. For the sake of efficiency, I have arranged the "too numerous to mention" items for you in a bar chart. 

And too numerous to even put in the bar chart (it would have dwarfed all of the other bars to insignificance) was the large amount of mail, both opened and unopened, mostly damp, puckered and stained. There were dozens and dozens and dozens of envelopes and flyers.

PS: Total amount of money found: $8.32. I plan to use all of that at the car wash. The outside of my car is just as dirty as the inside used to be.


  1. But what is the blank under the "literary journal"? It says 1 _______. ;-)

    1. Haha - I didn't notice that. There were several things accidentally omitted from this list – so it could have been any of the following: 1 pair sneakers (hardly worn), my Grade 11 Physics lab book (don't ask how it got there) or a button from the last Liberal election campaign, which came with the car.

  2. This is Monica Jorgensen, by the way. I realize you probably don't recognize Moamjo. :)