I shall no mention toilet paper in this essay. It is a subject I put behind me.
I have been a hoarder in my time. The objects I collected were books, large format cameras, and model airplanes. I say were, but in two cases, the process is still going on – the large format cameras have long been disposed of to fund digital equipment. that is a story for my photographic column, so go there and lurk…
The concept of the hoard is actually complex. The computer’s dictionary defines it as a stock of valuable objects that are hidden away. This is partially true for the model airplanes but not at all for the books. I have them prominently on shelves and dive into them all the time. I lend them out and sometimes they are lent on or purloined by those who have received them. They are a resource, but a fluid one.
The value of both these forms of collectible is possibly something that you could calculate, but I’ll bet any figure you set on them would be wrong. Goods are only worth what people will pay for them and my experience of people who get secondhand books or plastic models is that they try to pay mere pittances. So it is not a hoard of potential gold that I hold. It is a source of pleasure.
And that probably cancels the name ” hoard ” and the negative connotations. No one buys and I do not sell. I am in no different position than a state art gallery that exhibits for pleasure and edification. Of course they have boards and accountants that probably slaver and gobble over the rise in price of whatever they hang, but they rarely sell to anyone else.