By ALINA TUGEND
I HAVE a strange affinity for those reality shows where teams of people go into incredibly messy homes, see masses of clutter, get it all cleared out and then end up with beautifully redecorated homes that look like stage sets.
I enjoy watching the transformation. And like many other viewers, I also get a sense of smugness by looking at an out-of-control house. It makes me feel competent.
But as I’ve watched these shows, what has stuck with me is not how chaotic some people are, but how much power the things they’re hanging onto — a grandmother’s armoire, a treadmill, clothes they’ve never worn — seem to have over their lives..." More