January 6, 2014
Day Six of "The Great 2014 Purge."
And since I am authorized to shred,
today I shred an box full of index cards: Some are snippets of
dialogue I've overheard and recorded over the years. Some are
descriptions of characters. Still others are plot notes for a story I
I also shred an old
passport from a college trip to Europe, a passport I thought I'd
I shred cards from
my bridal and baby showers; yellowed newspaper clippings; my final
high school transcript.
I shred my high
school graduation announcement; the program from my college
commencement; three of my wedding invitations and one of my sister's,
the twenty-five cent stamp neatly affixed upside down on the response
I shred two expired
driver's licenses and an advertisement for a failed cleaning business
a friend and I started.
I shred the results
from some standardized test. A certificate of completion for a high
school driver education course. The 8th grade occupational interest
test, on which I reported I wished to be a nurse and showed no
interest in writing.
I recycle the
school newspaper that shows my class rank. The other newspaper that
shares the senior confessions, in which I admit to, among other
things, filling the soap dispenser in the boy's bathroom with
I pull out a folded
sheet of paper--a xeroxed copy of the cover of the April, 1999
Business Month. This issue of the magazine featured the top
"100 women to watch in corporate America." Beaming from the
cover were thirty successful women. As a college senior, I found this
magazine inspiring: I wanted to become one of the top hundred
women to watch in corporate America.
it was quite a simple thing to do. It was easy for me become one of
the top hundred women to watch in corporate America. All it took was
an X-Acto knife, some tape, and my high school graduation photograph,
neatly cut down to size.
set the doctored magazine beside my father's chair, where he would
see it when he came in from the barn for the evening. Dad wasn't
fooled. But my classmates were. For a few brief moments, I enjoyed
being one of the top hundred women to watch in corporate America. I
enjoyed the lecture from one of the boys, who admonished me for my
boastfulness. But then, my professor laughed and the moment was gone.
was back to being just Kelly.
take one last look at the cover and run it through the shredder.
Kelly Garriott Waite on Google+
Labels: 2014, Consumption, essay, Great 365 Day Purge, resolutions