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By Cathie Sibley
La Bella Amore Italian Bistro 


Taste of Italian


Stuff, junk, belongings, treasures, property, possessions... call it what you wish... but it’s just stuff, and we all have way too much of it.

I do say we because I’m riding in the same boat with everyone else

I mean really, we all have too much of it. For heaven’s sake, there are television shows dedicated to entertaining us by showcasing sad is that!

That’s not the only industry related to our overwhelming need for stuff. The self storage industry is one of the fastest growing industries in the United States for the last thirty-eight years.

There are over 59,000 self storage facilities world wide with a whopping 81.5% of those being in the U.S.

Why does the U.S. hold less than 5% of the world population, yet have over 80% of the storage space?

Houston, we have a problem!

In the U.S. alone we have over 2.3 billion square feet of self storage space generating more than $24 billion dollars annually and employing over 172,000 people.

According to the Self Storage Association – a registered lobbying agency –, there is 7.3 sq.ft. of self storage space for every man, woman and child in the nation; thus, it is physically possible that every American could stand – all at the same time – under the total canopy of self storage roofing.

Holy cow, that’s a lot of stuff.

Here’s the funny thing about all that stuff in the storage units.

We don’t need it.

If we needed it, it would be in our homes being used on a daily, weekly, monthly or yearly basis. It’s not in our homes, ”Out of sight, out of mind” the saying goes.

Therein lies the problem.

Storage facilities bank off that very truth.

The fact that we love our stuff and will keep paying on average $130 per month to keep our precious belongings.

Thirty percent of storage space renters keep their units for over two years.

Here’s the joke, storage facilities win either way.

If you don’t pay, they auction the units off to the highest bidder, which has become fodder for a few reality television shows. Wow, we really need that stuff.

A few years ago I was offered the keys to a storage unit that someone just didn’t want anymore for $50, all I had to do was clean it out by the end of the month, which was about ten days away.

Being a true patriot I jumped at the chance to own someone else’s treasures, I mean really, who wouldn’t, right! There must be some real treasures in that there storage unit because the owner had paid over $10,000 in storage fees over the years. And there were a few treasures scattered amongst the trash. The 10 by 20 unit was over half full of trash, and I mean that literally.


Load after load after load went directly to the dump.

I don’t see the problem improving either. After all, we are a nation of consumers, we need more stuff. If you don’t believe me, just ask WalMart, and Target, and Costco and so on and so on.

There’s a saying among people who love their stuff, “He who dies with the most toys wins.”

It’s a lie, he who dies with the most toys is dead, and someone else owns all his toys.

Peace and blessings to all and may your life be full of good stuff!


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