Okay, ladies: who has a “treasure box”? There are no rules; it’s whatever you want it to be. Mine is a little green box fashioned out of heavy cardboard with a deep yellow interior and it looks suspiciously like a lunch box. In it I have a random mix of stuff including a couple of special greeting cards, a random movie ticket stub (Cold Mountain), torn off addresses from envelopes sent from friends for my theoretical Christmas card list and fragile khaki-colored envelopes eroding at the edges which contain letters dating back to late Dec 1952 through early Jan 1953 from my paternal grandmother – living in Maryland with my infant father – to my grandfather stationed in San Francisco.
There are also pictures of me and my boyfriend (nice, not naughty), ’70s flashback pics of childhood, a mechanical Hello Kitty pencil, a silver fairy charm from my 7-year-old niece and 5 pins (think ’80s jean jacket): Vote for Pepe (yeah, the Muppet! He’s my favorite, by the way), Ozo (Ozomatili), NASA (yeah, that space stuff), B’more (Baltimore) and Obama: Change, Courage, Hope, from the Democratic National Convention pre-presidency.
Last but not least, I stumbled across a small treasure trove of… drum roll… stickers! Yes, ladies, I said stickers – six sheets to be exact. While everything else has been neatly nestled back in its proper place in my little lunch box, the stickers have been removed and I am currently plotting their proper use, which will probably involve personalizing my new laptop. I also have a unique opportunity to shallowly inflate my cool points with both nieces, ages 7 and 3, by breaking out said stickers during coloring time. Now, I know this is a cheap ploy but let’s face it, stickers work! Shoot, I got excited looking at them. My favorites? The sheer Hello Kitty ones and glittery ‘creatures of the sea’.
Who would have thought that an innocent endeavor like cleaning out my junky office would turn into my itemizing those things I hold dear, accumulated in one small box and protected like a dog would his bone.
Cija Jefferson is a writer living in Los Angeles.