They shouldn’t call it a garage. They should call it a gar-‘bage.

I have a neighbor whose garage is so full of crap, his cars haven’t seen the inside in 20 years. Ever seen those big white outdoor tents they have for vehicles? The hoarder has two of them – in his driveway, right in front of the garage doors that never open.

Why do we do that? Why do we all have so much stuff? And why does it always seem to accumulate there? What is it about the garage that makes it the universal garbage dump for all the useless crap we buy and can never seem to part with?

Our old house didn’t have nearly enough closet space or a garage, just a car port. But we managed. And when we built our new home, we made sure to fix that. Tons of storage space and a massive three car garage. It was pristine. I swore it would stay that way.

You should see it now. It looks like a scene from Storage Wars.

Why the garage? Lots of reasons. It’s usually the biggest room in the house. It’s the one room that you never have to vacuum or clean. It’s sort of a vestibule between our safe little slice of climate-controlled heaven and the great wide chaotic world outside.

The garage is like purgatory for our stuff.

Actually, it’s not even officially a room. No wonder it’s a magnet for everything that’s outlived its usefulness or was never any use to begin with. It’s the only place to safely indulge our inner hoarder without visitors thinking we should be committed.

We’ve all experienced the blind panic of unexpected visitors from out of town:

What the hell are we supposed to do with all those old clothes and appliances in the spare bedroom? What about the Bowflex and Nordic Track?  

Quick, toss it all in the garage.

Wait, didn’t they give us that butt-ugly antique light fixture?

Shit, you’re right; I’ll go find it. Any idea where it is?

Check the garage.

Funny thing is, we never toss any of that junk back when the parasites leave. We just open the good chardonnay, kick up our feet, turn on the tube and thank God the visit from hell is over.

If Karma is real, I’m thinking my neighbor will end up reincarnated as an old carburetor sitting atop a stack of boxes of old toys, baby clothes and school books, until the house is finally sold and all that crap hauled off to Goodwill and the garbage dump. RIP.

Image credit Tara R. via Flickr