Ben and I spent the afternoon out by my mom's, so I had a chance to pull out my camera and document for the Internets just how wacked out she is.
At the foot of her bed, she has a bag of socks. It's a full-sized comforter pouch, as you can see, filled with an eruption of ugly socks. Really. Would you wear a single one of these pairs? Mom likes to coordinate the color of her outfit with her socks, so she likes to have every color available. Some of her socks previously belonged to my sister or me. In the 1980s.
About 15 or 20 years ago, my grandma gave my mom a bag of hand-me-down pantyhose. Some may have been hers; some may have belonged to her friends or neighbors. My mom, of course, was delighted to take them off her mother-in-law's hands (or legs), even though some pairs of pantyhose had one snagged leg. She'd cut off the bad leg and wear two half pairs of pantyhose at once (two panties, but only one set of legs). I don't know if this heap of hosiery contains any of those heirloom pantyhose or if these items were acquired more recently. While the provenance of the pantyhose is uncertain, their location is crystal clear: on the dining room floor. But don't worry—there's no dining room table, so the hose are not in a room where eating happens.
What does my mom love even more than socks? Old newspapers. That's right. She won't recycle the paper until she's had a chance to go through it and clip out any articles that might be of interest to anyone she knows. She's got newspapers she moved to from the old house to the new house in 1978, and moved again in about 2002. She stores the papers EVERYWHERE, basically. What you see here is her couch (on the right if you tilt your head to the left), coffee table (on the left), and the floor between. (Sorry I was too lazy to flip the picture for you.) Somehow the organizational system she uses involves lots of newspapers everywhere, but the back issues of Newsweek seem to be concentrated on the floor here. And lest you think this was the only cluttered spot in the living room, let me assure you that the armchairs and floors are similarly decorated.