I know I’ve been silent now for quite a while on this blog. Every time I always acknowledge it and want to change it, I never do. I’ve been going through a lot of changes in my life lately, not all of them good. I’ve shared some with some of my Joe friends that I’ve made over the years, and many of them have been so amazingly supportive that I could never fully thank them enough for all they’ve done. People who live thousands of miles away from me, showing me more compassion and care than people merely up the street. Along with all of this has been a recounting of many things in my life. As some of you may know if you follow me on Twitter, last month I suffered the tragic loss of a friend that I truly cared very deeply about to a fatal car accident. She was 45. Her death came as a crushing blow, and as the tears begin to well up again as I type this, I’m still working through the grief and the loss I feel now that she’s gone. It’s a hard and lonely struggle that I face, each and every day. After her death I began to put a lot of things in my life into perspective and realized that I needed… no, wanted to change things. lots of things. I’ve decided I want to live a significantly more simple life, almost minimalist in many ways. The burdens of half of a lifetime worth of shit finally started to get to me, and continue to. So a great reckoning was born inside of me. The storm grew fierce and hard and began to envelop everything in my personal life. I started selling or donating piles and piles and piles of “stuff”.
Stuff that I once thought was cool
Stuff that I once “had to have”
Stuff that made me happy
Stuff that made me nostalgic
Stuff… stuff… stuff… everywhere.
This process continues, again even as I write this. I have a bag chock full of CD’s, DVD’s and Blu Ray’s ready to go to Newbury Comics tomorrow to see what they will buy off me. The rest go to the Salvation Army or Savers along with the pile of stuff on my dining room table right now and on to new lives in new homes. And that’s what it’s really about I guess, finding things new homes. Moving things down the road. Acknowledging that I’ve had my fulfillment from this stuff, and it’s not doing anyone any good sitting in totes.
So what the hell does all this have to do with G.I. Joe?
My Joe collection has not been immune to the storm. Coming to realizations of things that I picked up over the years that are just so far into left field from where I originally wanted to go. Modern, 25th, 30th, busts, statues, TV trays, puzzles, replica swords of Snake Eyes and Storm Shadow, Club stuff, art… it goes on and on. After a lot of thought, and second thoughts, and third thoughts I have finally made up my mind.
I have finished collecting G.I. Joe.
I’ve reached my 1994, and it’s time to call it a collection. I have more than enough. I don’t get the enjoyment out of these things the way I used to years ago. They now bring me back memories of a childhood that was great and healthy, but I think was just as lonely as my adulthood is now becoming. The 2 are becoming reflections of one another, just in different ways. Joes will always be a part of me, but they don’t define me. They don’t define my happiness. I actually have no idea what defines my happiness right now, so that journey will need to continue. I’ve begun to scale down and plan on continuing scaling down the items I have. The big stuff especially. Again, if I can’t display it or look at it or enjoy it… why? Why keep it? Just to know it’s there? Just to know that I own one of x item and put a check in the box? That toy, that piece of plastic that means so much to so many deserves better than that. It deserves better than what I can provide any longer.
The one thing that I will never get rid of are the countless numbers of you that I have met through Twitter, Blogs, Podcasts, and the Cons. You are my friends. You are my family. You are the reasons I’ve continued to enjoy this hobby and I’ve been inspired by your passions, creativity, and everything that you all offer.
Dave, Don, Page & Greg, Rob, Mark & Zach, Rock, Carson, Wordburglar Sean, Plastic Battles Paul, Chris Cardillo, Kenny R, Bjorn C (EU Joes), Merke, Chad Lawless, Joe Colton Cosplay, Twitziller, Brian, Rick, Elaine Atkins Manley, Dan K, John Thurmond, CJ Lloyd, CSJ, Gary, Grimm’s, Roma, Retromash, the Finest, GeeWunner, GeneralJoes, The Code Name Iowa crew, Joes Reassembled, Cool & Collected, Vipers Island, Nerdrahito, Big Boy, Chris Hemsworth, Bricks Universal, Joe-on-Joe, Action Figs Daily, Toy Scavenger, Forgotten Figures, Joeburg, Hiss Tank, Cobra Island, Joefest, Rec Room, Dudes in Toyland, Special Mission Force, Dragon Fortress…
I’m sure I missed so many more, you’re in no particular order, and I love you all.
To all of you above, and to the folks I may have missed. Thank you. Thank you for the kindness, generosity, friendship, companionship, memories, talents, creativity, and passion that all of you have shared with me whether you realized it or not. You’ve all helped make me the collector I became.
I’ll remain on twitter and still continue to help promote Joe and all of you, your endeavors, your collections, and businesses. I’ll still share photos and videos and all things Joe. This blog will fall silent once more after this, however, and likely remain here quietly, with the lights dimmed as a testament of my contribution to what GI Joe meant to me and all of you.
I’ll see you around, and thank you all for being my friends.
“The bond between those who have been through combat together is a brotherhood sealed in blood and watched over by the ghosts of those who fell.”