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Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Drowning in paper

I vote for a paperless society.

At the moment, my dining room table is covered in paper. My kitchen counter is a repository of the daily influx of paper that comes to our house. My work tote holds papers that have been in there for longer than they are useful. My desk at work is its own sea of paper.

I have piles of paper permeating my presence!

It's not that I don't throw away paper. I do. The credit card offers and the mailers from the local chiropractor never find rest in my home. They go straight from the mailbox to the trash can. But what if I might need that coupon for 35 cents off a box of Kleenex? (Never mind the fact that it has literally been years since I've redeemed a coupon.) And someday I might want to order those jammies from the Company Kids catalog (yes, I know they are available online. But having the catalog around reminds that I might want to order them -- besides, it gives me something to read in the bathroom.)

The Indianapolis Star is delivered to our home Thursday-Sunday. Not that I ever read it. But I like to spend my Sundays reading the Target ad and those schemers over at the Star won't let me just get a subscription to the Sunday paper. So it comes to our house four days a week. I peruse it, and set aside the sections that I might want to read later. And by the time next Thursday rolls around, I've read the Target ad and maybe the comics and occasionally the front page. And the cycle starts over.

I know when school starts, this problem will only be compounded. Homework, permission slips, third grade essays that are too precious to throw away, artwork that ought to be framed. Just thinking about it is enough to make me break out into paper pox!

There are a zillion books on the subject -- Taming the Paper Tiger comes to mind. There are people who've built entire careers on rescuing the paper pathetic. I know -- I've read the books and hired the people to no lasting avail.

So I'm drowning in paper here. And I'm thinking I need to buy a shredder and call to order a recycling box. And I'm dreaming of a paperless society.