It’s the new year, and we all know what that means — every post on Instagram captioned “thank u, next year.” But also, it’s time for the “new year new me” bullshit. Typically, the first few weeks of January are filled with goals and resolutions that people actively pursue until slipping back into their old habits. One of the most common of these is getting in shape. I’ve always wondered why the magnificent fortress of Payne Whitney Gymnasium, with the hundreds of Razor scooters lining its halls, got so much more crowded on my return to school in January. To clarify, it’s not that I actually go to the gym, but I’ve just seen more people heading in that direction when I am on my way to eat 18 slices of Stiles cheese pizza.
Although I am a staunch believer in not having new year’s resolutions — why disappoint yourself that early in the year? — I’ve stumbled upon a Netflix show in the time I’ve spent procrastinating my priorities. It struck an emotional chord within me. It’s called “Tidying Up with Marie Kondo,” and I’d like to share what I’ve learned from this show with my four readers.
Essentially, Marie sorts clutter into five distinct categories: clothing, books, paper, miscellaneous and sentimental items. In doing so, she helps people tidy up their lives. If the item “sparks joy” in your life, then you can keep the item. If it does not, Marie guides the participants through thanking the item for what it has brought to their lives, and then they throw that shit away. For me, this is the most inspirational part of this show. Something doesn’t bring you joy? You can just yeet that shit in the bin. Cut out the things that bring you down in your life. My dear friend, Lena Gallager ’21, said it best: “Snip, snip, bitch.”
So here’s my message to you all: If it doesn’t spark joy, good-fucking-bye. All that clutter on your bookshelf? Goodbye. The old exam from last semester you’re keeping around for some sort of sadistic sentimental purpose? Turn that into a paper airplane and fly send it soaring from your fourth-floor bedroom window. (Sorry York Street, Marie Kondo said I can litter!) United Airlines? Give them a taste of their own medicine and drag THEM out by their ankles. 9 a.m. class required for your major? Unnecessary! B-Y-E. All that Dubra you bought for the year, which will probably give you alcohol poisoning and a visit to Yale Health? Flush it while you have the chance. There’s no joy there. Problematic Yale Man? Do they spark joy? Thought not. Throw them in the pit (also known as Zeta basement.) The entirety of Yale University? Roll it up in a carpet and throw it away. The U.S. government? Gone. (Not actually please don’t put me on a list. (But also please re-open our government. Hard-working Americans deserve a paycheck.))
Amending the Kondo method to the Jost method, the five categories of Yale-specific clutter are: unfollowed-up-on “Let’s Get a Meal” solicitations; snakes; non-gut classes; any obligation before 1 p.m.; and AirPods. Does getting half-heartedly told that someone wants to catch up soon (when they really don’t care) give you that much-needed dose of wholesome social interaction? Get! That! Shit! Out! Of! Here! And! Be! Genuine! Does that YCC snake spark joy? Release it into the wild of Woads and let it slither out of your life. You won’t miss it. Classes besides “Trees,” “The Structure of Networks,” “Sex, Markets and Power” or “Chemistry of Food and Cooking”? Anything above a 2.5 workload? I’d rather drop out. If anyone even TRIES to do anything with me before 1 p.m., unless it’s getting me coffee, they would have to throw pebbles at my window to get me out of my room, and if they were to do that, I’d cut them out for ruining the joy that is my sleep. AirPods? Leave them in 2018. Kidding you can’t throw away your AirPods otherwise you’d have no identity.
I tried this method in my own life and ended up with an empty room (except my bed). Start your new year off with a clean slate and throw literally everything away.