On Drew's Day, January 17, 2010...

Since my last update on the 2-for-1 project in my room I have made some more progress. I've been able to clear off the table that does not have the computer on it. It was nice to be able to do a little grading on the table. I set up my roll of butcher paper on the top of the table and have been using that to take notes on as I'm working at the table.

Here's the latest stuff to leave the room:

  • A handful of tools went to the garage

  • 2 collector mugs (still in their boxes) went to the basement and will probably go out of the house this summer.

  • 2 boxes of random projects and parts went to the basement where I'm putting all my current and future projects until I have time to work on them.

  • A craft kit that I haven't had a chance to try out yet went to the basement.

  • 2 stacks of papers/magazines/journals were properly filed, a lot of which went out with the weekly trash.

  • My shop light for that I use for photography is going to live in the garage even though all my other photography gear lives in my room.

  • 3 comic books that I discovered I had duplicates of were sent to a friend.

  • Another paperbackswap book (a biography of William Randolph Hearst) was mailed out a week ago.

Also, an update to a few of the other things that I posted about previously: my firewire adapter that I put up for sale on ebay was sold but the data cable for an old phone did not sell on craigslist. I'll try relisting it either on ebay or craigslist again and if it doesn't sell, it will go to Goodwill.

Things that have come into the room:

  • Stack of Christmas presents including a farkel game, a small poster, a toy robot and a CD. These have mostly been put away.
  • A book I bought at a used bookstore.
  • A power strip
  • An Ikea tin for storing little things that tend to collect on the desk in the room.
Total items out for the year:


Total items in for the year:



On Drew's Day, January 03, 2010...

In with the new

Now that I've started taking things out of my room, I can start bringing things into my room. One of the projects I've been working on in the garage (for way too long) was the bookshelf in the photo here. This was the first major woodworking project I finished here at our place in Montgomery. Before we left for our Christmas road trip, I had applied a coat of polyurethane and had intended to do a light sanding and apply another coat. But, the temperature in the garage has dropped enough that I don't really think I should work on finishing any more for the winter. So, I brought it inside. It should help with organizing some of the stuff that stays in the room.

I took the cash that I got for the monitor I sold and spent it on a new USB headset for making skype calls, podcasts, and videos for class. I removed a microphone I got at American Science and Surplus to the basement.

Also coming into the room are 4 books I received for Christmas. Even though I have room in my 2-for-1 ratio to bring in the books without anything else going out, I thought it would be good to try to get rid of some books. Tomorrow I am mailing out a book that was requested of me via Paperback Swap. We really like this site for getting books that we'd like to read without paying cover price. You send a book you don't want to someone who does want the book, and in exchange you get a credit that can be spent to request a book you do want to read from another member. In essence, you end up getting books you want for the cost of mailing your books (about $2.25) to other people. In addition to the book I'm sending out, I found 7 physics journals scattered around the room that are heading to the basement.

Other things removed today: a Rubbermaid tub of physics stuff that belongs in the basement, an old computer plus keyboard and KVM switch, a box of photos, some broken glass from a photo frame
empty cups that I use to keep spare change in, 2 kick-disk hovercrafts (physics demo) and my stereo unit from college. I figured since I am sort of using fuzzy accounting to count the physics journals as books, I will make up for it by counting the computer, keyboard, and switch as one thing. So in total for the year I have:

Total items out:


Total items in:


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On Drew's Day, January 02, 2010...

Out with the old...

I've made a bit of progress on the great 2-for-1 exchange program in my room. In the photo are some of the things that have left my room, most permanently. I'm keeping track of the stuff going out and coming in so that I can adhere to my rule. I've been getting rid of the stuff in different ways:

Put away

I decided to put my backpack that normally lives in my room in the hallway closet. The backpack only really gets used for biking, and I don't see any bike rides in the next few months.

My old laptop is essentially dead, but I need to remove the hard drive before I can get rid of it. So it is going to the basement for now.

I'm also putting away (in the basement) some boxes that have been taking up space in the room. One is empty (it had our digital photo frame in it) and the other is half-full of some of my stuff that I moved from Bloomington.

Throw away

This one sort of breaks my heart, a little. I threw away a tiny USB laptop mouse. I think R. got it for me as a gift and I really liked it. But, it eventually wore out and stopped working reliably. I kept it to try to repair it or figure out something to do with it. I wasn't able to repair it and never came up with a great idea for it. I don't like the thought of this ending up in a land fill, but I wouldn't feel right with someone else getting frustrated by it like I did.

Give away

One of the things to leave my room is a first generation DVD-recorder. It works, but it does not always read the DVDs properly when you first put one in the machine. I took it apart and put it back together hoping I had cleaned it up enough to make it work better but no go. I'm going to list this on Freecycle and hope someone can make use of it so that it doesn't end up in the trash. Otherwise, I'll have to find an electronics recycling event to take it to.

Sell away

The other three things that are leaving the room are things that I'm trying to sell. I found out that eBay has a promotion where you can list 5 things every 30 days with no insertion fee. So, I put up for auction a USB/Firewire adapter that I had tried using for a project. We ended up using a different adapter for the project, so I no longer need this one.

I listed on craigslist a monitor that I had purchased at a thrift store. I had fixed up the monitor and used it for about a year before getting my new computer last month and no longer needing the monitor. The monitor sold almost immediately after listing it.

The other item I listed on craigslist is a data cable for my old cellular phone. I used it a few times, but I have a new phone and no longer need it. It's still for sale, make me an offer! ;)

Total items out


Total items in



On Drew's Day, December 30, 2009...

The disaster that is my man cave.

These out of focus photos reflect the horror that is my room. I have a plan to get the room under control. It is the 2-for-1 plan. For every one item that comes into the room as a new (or new-to-me) item, two items must be removed from the room. This plan will continue until no more items can be removed, or the room is just how I like it.

Some of the ground rules I've set for myself include:

  • A box of stuff counts as a single item. I can't count all the items in the box.

  • I can't count things like dishes or clothes that end up here. Those things have a place; they need to get there.

  • I should try to get the things that leave the room out of the house, but if I don't want to get rid of them, they have to go in the basement or the garage.

  • If something belongs in the room and I take it out, I can bring it back in without getting rid of two other things. For example, my laptop bag that I take to school everyday gets to come back into the room everyday.

I'd like to figure out a cool way to track all the stuff that is going out (and coming in) but for now, I guess I'll just list what I've done here in the blog.