Collecting things
Do you collect things? Are there any things you keep from childhood? Where do you usually keep things you collect? Would you keep old things for a long time? Why? What are the benefits of collecting things?
Vocabulary
  • Assortment (noun) - a group of different types of something.
  • To systematize (verb) - to plan a system for something.
  • Forethought (noun) - the good judgment to consider the near future in your present actions.
  • Keepsake (noun) - something that helps you remember a person, place, or occasion.
  • Bits and pieces (idiom) - small things or jobs of different types.
  • To overflow (verb) - when a place overflows, or people or things overflow from somewhere, some people or things have to come out because it cannot contain them all.
  • Clear-out (noun) - an occasion when you tidy a place by getting rid of things that you do not want.
  • Conversation piece (noun) - an unusual object that causes people to start talking.
  • Interior (noun) - the inside part of something.
Questions and answers
M: So, let's talk about collecting things. Do you collect things?

R: I used to collect these Micro Machine toys a while back. That was when I was a child. They had them for all kinds of fictional and real military units. And I suppose civilian ones as well actually, aside from that, and the sort of library of books I have. I also have this assortment of different things I've picked up over the years. It's not exactly systematized or anything, nor was there any forethought to it. But I definitely have collected stuff.

M: Are there any things you keep from childhood?

R: Aside from the keepsakes I talked about before? I don't really have anything, but my parents do. It's actually quite extensive. It goes from, or it includes old school books to work, to things I made outside of school. I think I should probably take more of an interest in it. But I haven't had the time lately.

M: Where do you usually keep things you collect?

R: I've got a memory box for my own stuff. It's not very big. But there's about 20 years worth of assorted bits and pieces in there. It started overflowing recently though. So I have this old shooting trophy that I put things in, however, that's also overcrowded. And is due for a clear-out, I think.

M: Would you keep old things for a long time?

R: I think that will depend on what exactly the items are. There's no sense in keeping things that are falling apart and useless. Unless they could be recycled, for example. I like holding on to old books, though, since sometimes I like to reread them. And I guess the same goes for old video games.

M: What are the benefits of collecting things?

R: Well, it gives you something to share with other people, like in terms of, or being conversation pieces. And I think if you've got them arranged in the right way, then it can add some character to your own interior design.
M: Thank you, Rory, for your ideas and answers! Have you collected words you want to remember for the rest of your life?

R: There is quite a collection, isn't there?

M: It's quite a collection.
Discussion
M: So collecting things. Collecting things is pretty much about a hobby. Yeah? We're talking about hobbies. So collecting as a hobby. So people, what can people collect?

R: People can collect anything they like. To be honest with you, I talked about it in terms of just collections of things I have for a purpose. I don't do it because it's a hobby. I just do it because it helps me remember things more clearly. But it's still about collecting things.

M: Have you ever collected things as a hobby? Like a collection of stamps?

R: Well, I did in the past, but I don't anymore. So I said I used to collect things.

M: Yeah. Yeah. So Rory said, I used to collect these micro machine toys, micro machine. Mini cars?

R: They are cars, but they also had things like spaceships and planes and tanks. It was really cool, actually. I think you can still buy them. Actually, I think I always wanted to... I just want to see if they still have them online.

M: Yeah, so you can say I used to collect stamps, or again, even if you didn't collect anything you can say, oh, yeah, when I was a child I used to collect and then toys Star Wars stuff, Harry Potter things. Because people collect anything these days. Again, like cutting boards, you know, the boards, where you cut bread or vegetables. So, yeah.

R: Oh, they do. Oh, no. Oh, they do. Oh, excellent. Oh, but they're sold out.

M: Microcars?

R: Micro Machines. They used to have ones for this TV show I used to watch called Babylon 5, but I think that is, I think it's pretty much... Oh no, you can still buy them. However, they're worth 90 pounds, which is really expensive. So I don't think I'd be buying them.

M: What? 90 pounds for one micro machine toy?

R: 90 pounds for three pieces of plastic. That's pretty outrageous, isn't it?

M: Three pieces of plastic.

R: But they are collectables. So...

M: Yeah. And what are the collectables? So, we collect things. And we have this word, a collectable.

R: Yeah, but that's like an item that's specifically... Well, no, it usually means an item that's specifically designed for collecting or something that has become, like it could be collected now. It's a collector's item, which just means that it's something that people who are interested in this subject collect in order to build up their collection as part of their hobby based around this particular subject. It's very complicated. Collect, like collecting as a hobby.
M: If I'm crazy about Harry Potter, and I'm collecting Harry Potter items. Are these items collectables?

R: If they're connected to Harry Potter, then yes.

M: Yeah, yeah, yeah. So all the items are connected to Harry Potter. And some of them are really expensive and really unique. So you can call them collectables.

R: I like that expression, like really unique.

M: Unique, yeah, unique.

R: No, really unique.

M: Really unique. The most unique, "the uniquest". No, no, don't say this, this is wrong, dear listener. It's bad language.

R: You can. But you can't be most unique. You're either like, it's like saying to new beginnings, but all beginnings are new. So it's the same thing. It's like something is either unique or it's not.

M: We can also collect autographs, tattoos, we can collect whiskey bottles, we can collect perfume, matchboxes, stamps. Well, stamps and coins, those are boring. So yeah, I'd say collect tattoos and autographs. That's something, you know, exciting.

R: Can you collect tattoos? Like as in you collect pieces of people's skin with tattoos on them.

M: No, you collect tattoos on your body. Some people do collect tattoos.

R: No, that's just having. I don't think people would call it a collection. Well, they might if they're being surreal or irreverent.

M: You know, it would be like, the examiner goes, do you collect things? Yes, I collect tattoos. And then you're going to show like, oh, look.

R: Have you seen my mafia tattoos? Give me my band nine.

M: I'll show you, wait, wait, dear examiner, I'll show you. Then we can say that I have this assortment of different things. So the assortment of things - I have different things. Right? And you pick up different things over the years. So Rory said that I have this assortment of different things I've picked up during the year. So you know, like Rory picked up things over the years. Also these things, you can say that they are bits and pieces. Right? And Rory, you said like assorted bits and pieces. What did you mean by assorted?

R: It just means it's a random collection of items. There's no, well, other than helping me remember parts of my life more clearly. There's no other purpose behind them at all. So it's an assortment, it's random, and bits and pieces, it is literally just, sometimes it is bits of stuff. Like I have a shotgun shell because I went shooting. And that's random. Because the next thing I picked up was like, I think it was, it was a keychain that one of my students made. So...

M: Aw. So you collect these, you know, things which have emotional value to you, right?

R: Or sentimental value. Yes.

M: Sentimental value, right. So Rory is emotionally attached to certain objects, and they have a sentimental value. So Rory collects these things, right? But, dear listener or viewer, lovely person, you can just collect something as a hobby, right? Yeah. And you can keep all these things in a memory box. Right? And Rory, you said that I have a memory box for my own stuff with assorted bits and pieces I've picked up over the years. And this memory box is overflowing.

R: But sometimes, I mean, I'm just talking about myself here based on my own experience, but some people collect stamps and they have special stamp collecting books for that. Some people collect butterflies and there is a name for that and totally forgotten what it is. But they have special display cases for this as well. Do not collect the butterflies. It is cruel.

M: My father did that.

R: He is a cruel man to butterflies. How would you like it if someone stabbed you with a needle? You would not like that.

M: Let's move on. Right. So, if your collection is arranged in a nice way, you can say that these arranged things could add to the interior or to the design of your house, to the interior design. So we arrange our collections in a nice way. Rory, you said something like keepsakes. What did you mean by keepsakes? Just random things that you keep in order to remember something, so you keep it for the sake of having it to remember something.

R: And then if you collect different like random bits and pieces from your life, you can have a trophy in your memory box. So a trophy is like a cup or like a trophy. Something like...

R: Well, you could have it in your memory box, or you could have it on display, which is not an expression I used, but it is kind of, it is relevant to the purpose of collecting things because you show off your collections, usually.

M: And then they could be a nice conversation piece, you said? Conversation piece.

R: Yeah, conversation piece is just exactly what it sounds like. It's something designed to make conversations happen.

M: So if I collect tattoos on my body, so my tattoos, are like a nice conversation piece.

R: You are determined to get tattoos into this video.

M: No, it's such a nice, I kind of, interesting idea. Like I collect tattoos. But also guys, you can collect things like objects, but like this, for example. Yeah, I enjoy collecting the, you know, the stones and little shells. I'm crazy about them. So cute.
R: It is.

M: So like physical objects, right?

R: Yeah.

M: But you can also collect ideas, you can collect experiences. And you can talk about this, you know, so I prefer to collect ideas or experiences, or I, some people collect places they visited.

R: Absolutely. I would always think like collections are physical things, but you can collect non-physical things. I just think maybe you could maybe it's better to say that you collect tattoo designs because collecting tattoos does sound like you're just going around cutting bits off people.

M: I collect tattoos. Yeah, like give me your tattoo, just give me that. I like holding on to old books. I like holding on to shells. So when you hold on to something, what do you do?

R: You just keep it. It's the same as keeping, well, no, it's not exactly that. But it is. It has the same function as keep something.

M: And also, Rory, if I say, for example, I'm a bit of a hoarder. So to hoard, hoard. Hoard. What does this mean?

R: Hoarding is like building up a collection mindlessly. And it's usually, it doesn't really have a purpose. In fact, it might be quite detrimental to you.

M: Yeah, yeah. So you know, when you imagine a person and then you go to the flat, and the flat is like full of stuff. It's like rubbish, and not rubbish and books and all. Everything, everything, old stuff, new stuff, everything's packed. So this is a hoarder. So, I'm a bit of a hoarder. If you just like keep collecting, accumulating stuff, and you don't throw anything away, so this is a little bit negative, but in a kind of a fun way, you can say, oh, hey, I'm a bit of a hoarder. So I have these stones. And also, dear listener, you know...

R: The shoes.

M: I have my collection.

R: Is this where we talk about the shoes?

M: No, the shoes is just like, I can't say that I hoard shoes. It's not just I have too many shoes. You can't have too many shoes, dear listener, you know. Even if they are all the same and, but they are all different, you know. You see like, like different colours and... But I can say, I'm a bit of a hoarder. Am I? No, I don't think so.

R: When it comes to shoes? How many pairs do you have?
M: Um, I'm not sure.

R: Seek help.

M: Shoes, but I need more. I need more shows. You see? Dear listener, please support me. Ladies, do you have shoes, you know?

R: Please support our various psychological problems.

M: You supported Rory who gets up at an ungodly hour at 5:30. Right? But please support me.

R: Yeah, I know. It is awful when people support positive decisions in your life, isn't it? You can support Maria's shoe addiction by purchasing our premium. The link is in the description below.

M: Just give me money so I can invest them. So just give me money so I can invest it in therapy, perhaps shoe therapy.

R: I'm gonna need it to invest in my own therapy as well.

M: Oh, this is nice. Yeah. All right. Okay.

R: Very briefly, since we've talked about Maria's shoes, we should also talk about NFTs because people collect those as well. Very briefly. NFT stands for non-fungible token, which just means that it's like a unique piece of, well, sometimes it's a unique piece of artwork that uses blockchain technology so that you can effectively track the ownership of something and the record is impossible to destroy. Unless every single computer on the planet was wiped out, or you had an obscene number of supercomputers that haven't been invented yet. So because of this, it makes these items extremely rare and very high value. That is a summary and a gross oversimplification of what NFTs are.

M: Would you like to collect NFTs?

R: No, I wouldn't, because I think it's completely insane. It's like this is late-stage capitalism kind of stuff. He said, looking at her, she held her golden shoe. Oh, my God, can we just finish the episode, please?

M: Yeah, Rory, you said the same thing. When we were talking about shoes, and the episode was about shoes. And you said the same thing. Like let's stop talking about it. No, we continue, we continue.

R: The link to the transcript of this episode is in the description below. Please leave your questions in the comments like how do you maintain your sanity in this kind of working environment? And follow us on social media where you can ask the same questions as well. Share the video with people that need to see it. A licensed psychiatrist, perhaps. And we'll see you next week. Goodbye!

M: Bye!
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