One of my happiness-project resolutions is to “Find more fun,” and as part of trying to have more fun, I decided to start a collection. A collection provides a mission, a reason to visit new places, the excitement of the chase, a field of expertise (no matter how trivial), and, often, a bond with other people. It sounded like so much fun.
There are two kinds of collectors. The first kind seeks to have a complete set — of stamps, of coins, of Barbie dolls—and keeps a comprehensive and orderly kind of collection. The second kind of collector is driven by sheer desire, by the siren call of objects.
My mother, of the second camp, has a tremendous knowledge and passion for objects and materials; she spends a lot of time visiting museums and walking through stores. Her collections of Tartanware, Royal Beyruth porcelain tomatoes, and in particular, her collection of Santa Clauses, are a tremendous source of fun for her. (And also me, because a few times, she’s given me her collections – like her magnificent Halloween decorations).
I wanted to start a collection — but what should I collect? I didn’t have enough passion to justify an expensive collection, and I didn’t want to collect junk. In the end, I decided to collect blue birds, because blue birds are a symbol of happiness. As far as I know, this connection arose from Maurice Maeterlinck’s play, The Blue Bird (also an excellent movie starring Shirley Temple).
So now I have a blue bird collections, of sorts. I sort of enjoy having a collection, but not as much as I thought I might. Do you have a collection that is a source of fun for you? What do you collect, and why?
The days are long, but the years are short.