Forget your Porsche, your second home in the Hamptons, or that Swiss watch. What belongs to you that you treasure the most, although it may have little to no monetary value? The thing you’d grab from your burning home, passing up more expensive items. An article with memories and meaning clinging to it. For me, it’d be;
My Yellow Backpack. It belonged to my brother first; he gave it to me in 2003. This backpack’s been all over the continent with me. It’s held my life. A British guy tried to buy it off me once, I turned him down. Couldn’t part with it.
My Americorps T-Shirts. Including my uniform, and all the t-shirts given to me over 2004 by the non-profit organizations I worked with. I kept every one. My personal favorite is my Operation Give shirt, from the first project we ever worked on. They’re just t-shirts with logos on them, but they mean more to me than any designer jeans, any gowns, any fancy shoes.
I have a pink box (used to be scented; I won it in a baby (bridal?) shower game when I was a kid) full of stuff that wouldn’t be considered valuable by anybody except me. It’s the only material possession that I would take the time to grab in the event of fire/flood/tornado/etc.
Yellow Blanket Ive had it since I was born, and have pictures of me wrapped in it when I was a baby. The thing is more hole than blanket, but I cannot bear to throw it away.
My moms old necklace Its sterling silver and bought for next to nothing, but my mother wore it when she was my age. I never take it off. It wouldnt be very valuable money wise if someone stole it, but I love it to death.
German Stein my sister gave me while traveling thru europe. Priceless.
My Harry Potter books. I’ve had the very first one since about 1997 and I’ve been growing up with Harry for years now. They’ve been through everything with me and I lurrrve them. I once had a dream about this hurricane coming and my house about to collapse but I risked it all to get my Harry Potter books.
Man I feel nerdy.
Two college German textbooks that belonged to my dad. When I was in high school, I found them in a basement and worked through the stories and grammar exercises. They launched my lifelong fascination with languages.
The only surviving photograph of my wife and I before we were married. It looks goofy as hell, 'cause we were clowning around at the time, but I would protect that picture with my life.
Photos from my year in Korea when I was in the army.
I’ve been using the same Mickey Mouse pillow case since 1976. You can practically see through it, it’s so threadbare. It caused a big fight with my college girlfriend because I wouldn’t let her use it while I was off at school (I took it with me). I love that pillow case ::sniff::
My dad’s toolchest. It’s a custom made two-piece toolbox, for a tool & diemaker. Now, it belongs to my oldest son, and holds his little assortment of hammers and screwdrivers. If the house were on fire, that would be the third thing I grab (after thw two kids, of course).
My blankie. When my parents owned a supermarket and my mom was pregnant with my older brother, one of their regular customers knitted a blanket for my mom to give to her son when he was born. My brother held onto that blanket like it was his lifeline. Then four years later I was born. For some reason I would only be quiet when I held onto that blankie, and my mom made my brother give up his blanket to me. I still have it in my room in my parent’s house. My brother still tells me he’ll steal Sof Sof away from me (when you’re a baby, sof sof means it’s really soft! and the name stuck). But it’s MINE!
Photographs. Especially the ones where I was younger. All of my baby pictures were burned when our house burned down 15+ years ago. So my kiddy pictures really mean a lot to me. That and the ones with my family when we were in Thailand visiting relatives and when we traveled around Europe. Those hold priceless memories.