The sad marker.

The sad marker.

I had a Copic marker go bad on me this week. Maybe not the most interesting thing in the world to write about but I’m trying to distract myself from the downer that is cleaning off and rearranging my bookshelves. Yeah, yeah, yeah, life is so rough but what can I say? We all got our things and shelf cleaning brings me down.

Anyway the Copic marker that went bad on me was my Y06 yellow. No modifier to the yellow. No yellow this or yellow that but straight-up yellow. It has a capital Y so I guess that would be Yellow. This marker has been trouble since I bought it. First off it’s a nice yellow. It’s bright and clear. When using a yellow marker they seem to pick up a lot more color from other marker ink on the paper than most light colors. That is if I use the yellow next to blue it picks up the blue and makes green. That makes things problematic because the yellow marker tip is often contaminated with another color. This was a problem with this marker from the day I bought it but yellow markers are like that.

The bigger problem was that my Y06 didn’t seem as juicy as my other Copics. It wasn’t as wet. I was always scrubbing with it a little more than my others to get the yellow on the page. All that scrubbing didn’t help with it picking up other colors from the page. I had some refill ink for the marker but even after I put more in in it still didn’t seem as juicy. The marker was a problem for months and even lead to me replacing the nib on the thing because I thought that was the problem. It wasn’t. I had a hard time getting the marker to even work a little bit with the new nib. Ink wouldn’t flow into it properly. Finally I had to flush out the marker by adding a whole bunch of alcohol (or colorless blender as it’s called) to it instead of ink. This eventually got it working again but I still avoided the marker more than my other yellows.

This week I picked up the marker and it was dry as a bone. That’s when I noticed the cap was loose. The cap wasn’t off or anything and it still clicked on to the marker but it was no longer snug. I’m guessing it never really was. With the cap not forming an air-tight seal the marker was drying out slowly but surely and that was what was causing my problems. Now it’s never gonna seal again so this marker is kicked. Which is odd because I have another Copic marker with a cracked cap (I dropped it) that I taped up and it’s been doing fine ever since. How did this cap get warped? It doesn’t look broken or cracked. Strange.

Now about the shelf thing. I’ve got a lot of shelves. On those shelves I mostly have a lot of comic books, paperback collections, and hardcover collections of comic books. Since I’m always getting new comics and books the shelves fill up and that means I have to find a new place to put the new stuff or get rid of some old stuff. Usually I get rid of some old stuff.

I’m not the type of person who has trouble getting rid of old stuff. Of course there is plenty of old stuff I want to keep but I also have old stuff lying around that is on my mental list of things that I’ll get rid of in the next purge. I look at things and ask myself when was the last time I looked at or interacted with this particular object? If the answer is “Five years” then it gets serious consideration for the purge pile. “Ten years” is the kiss of death.

It’s the waste of it all that gets me down when I clean things out. It’s throwing out perfectly good objects because it’s easier than finding someone who could use them. And of course no one wants them anyway. One of the things I was cleaning out was the last of my VHS tapes. They were final holdouts form my VHS collection that have been thrown out in previous purges. They were mostly documentaries that I taped off the TV and some concert videos but I don’t think I have even turned on a VCR in five years. I think I even digitized most of it. I don’t know for sure because I haven’t even watched the digital files in years. I can probably find it all on the internet anyway. Such a waste.

I’m also getting rid of some old books. Nothing good. Not books anyone would want. They’re mostly crappy old paperbacks that I read a decade ago and I bought in the clearance section of some book store. Some of them are even reference books on a bunch of odd subjects that I needed for some old project long ago. Who even uses reference books anymore? We can look everything up on the internet.

The oddest thing that depresses about the who cleaning out of the old stuff process is that all the stuff is not gone yet. It’s still here. Until the garbage and recycling is taken away the stuff hasn’t left. And I feel self-conscious about the stuff I threw out. Like the garbage men will judge me for being wasteful. This is the strangest part to me because I’m not normally a self-conscious person. The thought that people are judging me rarely enters my mind and when it does I usually don’t care that they are. But for some reason when I’m cleaning things out I think some hypothetical garbage man is going to be tsk-tsking me. I know that the real garbage men don’t care and just throw what is up on the curb into the truck without a second thought but the garbage men in my head are more wistful. Philosopher garbage men. Or maybe the garbage men in my head are really the past me who bought the thing that the present me now finds such an annoyance that he is throwing it out.

Either way I think I need to find out if there is a word for something. A word that describes the felling of happiness I get when I see the garbage truck take away the garbage. First I have garbage and it’s a burden and then I don’t and I’m giddy about it. There should be a name for that feeling. And I should throw out that yellow marker.