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The Things I Should Have Thrown Away

(but didn’t) Adam Howard

This is a catalogue of the items I frequently find myself collecting Some of the items I keep because they are useful or I intend to find a new purpose for them. Others I keep for sentimental purposes, and some I collect simply because I do.

Hoard [hawrd, hohrd] Noun 1. A supply or accumulation that is hidden or carefully guarded for preservation, future use, etc.: a vast hoard of silver.

Verb (used with object) 2. To accumulate for preservation, future use, etc., in a hidden or carefully guarded place: to hoard food during a shortage.

Verb (used without object) 3. To accumulate money, food, or the like, in a hidden or carefully guarded place for preservation, future use, etc.

Compulsive hoarding: Is a pattern of behavior that is characterized by the excessive acquisition and inability or unwillingness to discard large quantities of objects that would seemingly qualify as useless or without value.



think everyone collects coins, well the bronze ones anyway (too busy spending the rest). I keep all of my pennies in a

box, mainly because there just isn’t a wallet big enough for all the coins I’ll eventually end up with. This act of squirreling my coins away stems from the grand intention of eventually changing it into ‘real money’ somehow, but waiting to have enough for it to be worthwhile and by that time you have so many coins they’re far too heavy to take anywhere anyway. Despite this I think the real reason I store my pennies away is because my parents did it when I was growing up, and I’m simply carrying on what I know.

Two pence coin: 27 One pence coin: 42 Value: £0.96



lastic carrier bags are another example of the things that I think everyone collects, of course with bags-for-life maybe

less so. Even though I own bags-for-life I seem to accumulate a steady flow of bags per week. By collecting bags I find that I have an ever growing supply of bin liners and apart from when I need to carry something that won’t fit in my backpack I realise there is very little reason to continuously store away plastic bags, though I doubt I’ll stop regardless of this. And again I think that I accumulate bags simply because my parents do.

95 :Bags



trips of paper, pieces from that box I tore up, leftover wrapping paper, all too small to be useful anymore but

not so small enough that throwing them away doesn’t feel like a waste. Albeit quite common, I think keeping scrap paper is a thing only certain people would do. I keep scraps of paper and card because at some point I’ll find a use for it, but considering that I have more scraps then I know what to do with it might just be simpler to recycle the whole lot.

Big mess: 1 Bits of wrapping paper: 5 Pieces of cardboard: 12 Strips of paper: 19 Scraps: 36



ollecting train tickets is a bit more unusual, but recently the more people I talk to, the more I find people do. And

when I asked them why, most have the same reason I have: “I don’t know why, I just do.” The only reason I can see for collecting tickets is a sentimental one, each ticket representing a specific journey (or adventure if you’re dramatic about these things). But to be frank a train ticket in itself has a very limited possibility of retaining a sentiment, giving an account of when and where you were going, and how much you paid. Of course the other reason I might find myself keeping tickets is because no one bothered to ask me for it during my journey, and so I kept it so that I felt like buying a ticket when I didn’t need one actually meant something.

1 :Travel card 3 :Outbound 6 :Return 12 :Single 22 :Train tickets £166 :Money spent



think colleting paper types will become something of an occupational hazard, if it isn’t already the case. Most of the paper I have collected was bought for a reason

and what’s been left over has been stored away for when I might need it again. But some of it I’ve bought because I liked the look of it, or think I might be able to use it at some point for something. This is probably a healthy attitude to have, up until the point when I start ‘needing’ to buy some new paper I’ve found just because it’s a certain shade of off-white that I haven’t seen before.

Brown: 2 Patterned: 2 Textured: 3 White: 4 Rolls of paper: 6



oxes and packaging are probably the oddest items that I collect, but also the item which I am the least random

about keeping. I don’t keep every box I find; unlike with many of the other items I collect. The boxes I choose to keep are interesting in their design, either because of the way the packaging has been constructed or because I like the surface graphics or for both of these reasons. When collecting these boxes I dismantle them, trying to keep them in a condition in which I can reassemble them when necessary. By doing this I try to learn the way in which the net works, and then applying the things I’ve learnt to other designs.

1 :Drink carton 3 :Other packaging 4 :Food Packaging 8 :Boxes

Total* items collected:

236 *so far

The things...  
The things...  

A "catalog" of the things I collect