风水

My mood has been on a friggin’ yo-yo since Saturday afternoon. I don’t know what my deal is, but on Sunday the only reasons I got out of bed (and stopped crying) were food-related (I made delicious whole wheat hazelnut pancakes, and went to Trader Joe’s).

Then today, after being generally bummed-out and ornery all day, I got home and felt manic! Totally jazzed about nothing in particular, and full of energy. Before you start worrying, I should mention that there are extenuating circumstances that need not be mentioned, which is the likely culprit of my Jekyll-Hyde dealio.

So, I got home and decided that something had to change. I had been thinking about the daoist concept of 风水 (feng shui {fung shwai}, wind-water) where you’re supposed to harmonize the parts of your life through aesthetics and other things. This is my super-simplified interpretation.

The rooms in your house represent different areas of your life, and then within each room certain spaces represent specific aspects of that part of your life.

For instance, your living room represents your social life (that’s where entertaining and socializing is done), your kitchen represents your body (you put food in your body, which you prepare in the kitchen), your study (or library or computer room or whatever) represents your mind/ work, and your bedroom represents your love life (well, duh).

My kitchen is [usually] clean and tidy (I’m pretty healthy), my living room is clean and peaceful/ cozy (but full of books– which explains why my social life revolves around school), and my ‘study’ is clean but chock-full of maps, papers, and books that I need to read or reference a lot (a little overwhelming, as is school/work).

But good god! If my bedroom represents my love life….

Let me paint a quick picture. Immediately as you enter, against the wall is a small bookshelf crammed full of books I fully intend to read in the near future, as well as two malfunctioning clocks, a stuffed pink polka-dotted dog, misc. hair accessories, some new bike tires, an MSR campstove stove fuel bottle (empty), and a dead heartrate monitor. My bed is unmade. I have two down comforters that are kind of bunched up in the corner of it, and a million decorative pillows to fill the… extra space. On the bedside table is my cell phone, cell phone charger, a stack of books I am “currently reading ” (some work-related, others fun fiction) and a kleenex box.

In the corner opposite the door I have lined up all of my bikes against the wall, and four extra wheels (one tacoed beyond repair). A geared mountain bike, a single speed mountain bike, and my road bike. My old roommate used to joke that I rode bikes instead of going on dates.

::sob::

Moving on. Next to the bikes is a bench my mom painted with black polka-dots, with a set of dumbells, a lamp, folded sweaters, folded jeans (all worn in the past two weeks), and my alarm clock on top. A basket of clean laundry (unfolded) sits in the middle of the floor, next to a spreading pile of dirty laundry.

Finally, against the wall parallel to the door is my dresser, with pictures of my family and a lamp on top. There’s one picture on the wall, a poster from the Manitou Music festival featuring a yellow Schwinn very similar to the one that haunts my garage.

Amidst all of this paraphernalia are a petting-zoo’s worth of dust bunnies. Awesome.

First things first. My kitchen was in fact a bit messy when I got home (hm… come to think of it, I’ve also been eating a lot of crap the past few days, and feel sluggish and chubby. Wow.) so I wiped down all the surfaces and did all the dishes. Done.

Then, I attacked my laundry. Dirty laundry got thrown in the wash, clean laundry was folded and put away. Sweaters and jeans that were piled on the bench were put away. Laundry is done.

I made my bed. I fluffed up the comforters and straightened them out, which the cats thought was a great game. I usually just stop there, with the tidying.

But my mania continued, and I had the sudden urge to really change stuff around. I grabbed the extra bike wheels in the corner, and took them out to the garage.

And then I took my bikes, my precious bikes, out to the cold, cold garage.

Well, my mountain bikes. See, it made no sense for them to be inside, all covered with trail grime and gathering more dust. My road bike, however, got to stay indoors (in my ‘study’, not the bedroom), since I ride it [her] on the trainer. Sometimes.

My room was suddenly empty and barren. THAT’S no good! I vacuumed up all the dust bunnies and their offspring, and brought in the two area rugs I had been storing in the garage. I shook them out, vacuumed the cobwebs off, and spread one in my bedroom and one in my ‘study.’ Things were looking better, but the corner where the bikes had been was still empty.

You’re supposed to put soft, comfortable things in your bedroom (or so I hear), so I moved the chair and footstool that the cats like so much in there from my study. Now the bookshelf was making things look cluttered, and you shouldn’t have too many books in your bedroom anyway. Into the living room with it!

But now the living room’s vibe was ‘off.’ I couldn’t figure out where to put the shelf without it looking out of place. ::Sigh:: the commuter bike inhabiting the front hallway would have to join his brethren in the garage. The shelf took his (Fred’s) place.

The one thing I don’t like about the shelf is that now books I have read are mixed in with books I haven’t read… but let’s face it. Quite a few of the books on my ‘have read’ shelves were in fact simply downgraded from the ‘will read’ shelf. I guess I inherited my mom’s love of the ‘book aesthetic’– my stepdad is actually the voracious reader in the family. I do love to read, but lately my attention span has been a little short.

My bedroom now: neat bed (still a lot of pillows), the bench is at the foot of it, on top of a small rug; a rag-rug covers the previously bare floor, and nicely ties in the colors from bed spread/ pillows/ and window hanging; the bedside table is now home to a lamp, my alarm clock, the kleenex box, and ONE book of fiction (the cell phone is on my desk); in the corner is a chair with a pillow and a stuffed bear; next to the chair is a footstool with more pillows and the cats’ bed.

No bikes. Hardly any books. No dust bunnies. Significantly reduced clutter. I’ll sleep well tonight.

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