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 Post subject: death and your stuff
PostPosted: Tue Sep 13, 2011 8:34 am 
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Location: central Arkansas
I helped a friend's widow and a helper sort through three sheds full of "stuff" over the weekend. Neither of them had any idea what anything was. I sorted the parts of his 7 project, a disassembled Lotus Eclat (she'll sell it for $1000, if anyone is interested), model airplanes, and so forth. I made a big pile of tools in one shed. Apparently when he was finished with something he just dropped it on the floor wherever he happened to be and walked away.

Ron died of a brain tumor at 52. I never expected to live to 52, and now that's looking young... he was always a bit odd, but nobody knew, for example, that he'd been storing years' worth of smoked cigarette butts in metal coffee cans in the laundry room, along with a big cardboard box of empty Swisher Sweet cigar packets.

There are still two rentals full of "stuff" to go through, plus his study, which had a narrow trail from the door to his desk, the "stuff" piled to the ceiling. Jamie and her sister just opened the door and threw stuff in until that was full too, and body-slammed the door shut while cleaning up for the relatives who came in from out of town. I'll have to sort all that out over the winter, along with great masses of paper in various boxes and bins.

Over on some of the machinist's forums I'm on this sort of thing isn't unusual, though the "stuff" can be a lot more valuable. One widow was thrilled that someone picked up "that crap" from the garage for free; a couple of people who'd been there guesstimated $75,000 worth of Deckel, Hardinge, and Monarch equipment and tooling, even at fire-sale prices.

I'd occasionally thought about building some kind of inventory list for my wife, should I die. That's moved up quite a bit on the "to-do" list.

My wife is a packrat, and I imagine she'd be just fine with making sure the door to the workshop is locked... and she'd probably never go in there again, as she has no interest in what's in there. And other than some some car parts and hand tools, none of my friends would be much interested. But there's a reasonably well-equipped machine shop in there that, properly split up and sold off, would give her some extra money she'll probably need, eventually.

She's as much of a gunhead as I am, so she'd probably want to keep them all, but I still need to write down some approximate values and some dealers who might be interested. There are also a couple of pieces with ATF paperwork, which would have to be formally transferred to her. No big deal, but it would have to be done before any could be sold, and the ATF seems to have a "90 days before we process your papers" policy on almost everything.

During the tornado season earlier this year I gathered up all the important papers (yeah, I'd gotten slovenly), sorted them, threw away what wasn't needed any more, grouped them in file folders, and put them in a hanging file. I also scanned copies of most of them onto multiple DVDs and USB keys, which went into our bug-out bags, so at least all the stuff is together, even if a lot of it really should be in the almost-empty safe deposit box we're paying for.


(and this from a friend who would up sorting and cleaning out a mutual friend's effects) If you have a [NWS PORN] collection, consider that various people are going to see it, and make comments on it that will eventually get back to your family. This also applies to pictures and e-mail on your computer.

And speaking of computers, it's a good idea to write down logins and passwords somewhere, particularly for online banking, bill payment, etc. I use a little spiral notebook I keep beside my keyboard. I know others who use USB sticks.


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 Post subject: Re: death and your stuff
PostPosted: Tue Sep 13, 2011 9:09 am 
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Location: Shawnee, Ks
Just a note on going through his old papers and books, my in-laws had a friend in Colorado die and they went out to help the widow go through his papers and books. His condition was similar to your friend's. They found thousands of dollars in cash squirreled away inside the pages of his books that his wife had no idea about. So be sure to look carefully before going to the dumpster or Goodwill. Russ

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 Post subject: Re: death and your stuff
PostPosted: Tue Sep 13, 2011 10:39 am 
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Joined: Sun Apr 23, 2006 8:26 pm
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Yeah my wife has brought this up, that if I kick-off early she'd have no idea what anything is worth. The thing is, say you make a list, but what number do you write down? For examply, A Benelli M2 runs about $1200 new, but what's it worth after sitting in the safe for 15-30 years? I bought a used Grizzly lathe 15 years ago, what's it worth now? I guess what I'm saying is, having a list doesn't get round having to go through everything at the time of the spouse's demise, where only then can realistic values be assigned. A long visit with Google can be a big help.

Besides, who here wants our spouse to know exactly how much we spend on stuff...

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 Post subject: Re: death and your stuff
PostPosted: Tue Sep 13, 2011 11:37 am 
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Location: Tennessee
Besides, who here wants our spouse to know exactly how much we spend on stuff...[/quote]

Well, I don't mind my spouse knowing how much I spend but I don't want to know how much I spend. I might decide I can't afford it.


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 Post subject: Re: death and your stuff
PostPosted: Tue Sep 13, 2011 1:40 pm 
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Sounds along the line of a conversation the wife and I had recently.

We were sitting around the breakfast table one lazy Sunday morning.

I said to her, "If I were to die suddenly, I want you to immediately sell all my stuff."

"Now why would you want me to do something like that?" she asked.

"I figure that you would eventually remarry and I don't want some other a**hole

using my stuff.."

She looked at me and said: "What makes you think I'd marry another a**hole?"


Censors sure took the punch outa that punchline.

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 Post subject: Re: death and your stuff
PostPosted: Tue Sep 13, 2011 1:51 pm 
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Quote:
There are also a couple of pieces with ATF paperwork, which would have to be formally transferred to her.


In today's political climate, firearms sans ATF paperwork are often worth more. Modern day minutemen don't want the Kings thugs to come and confiscate their only hope of defense. But, you didn't hear it from me!

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 Post subject: Re: death and your stuff
PostPosted: Tue Sep 13, 2011 1:53 pm 
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trialsmangasgas wrote:
They found thousands of dollars in cash squirreled away inside the pages of his books that his wife had no idea about.


Dutch by chance? When my ex's father died, a Dutchman, we found about 30K all up all over the house and his shed - the first lot was found as his tools were being sorted and then from there on in the most amazing places such as under the corner of the bathtub, his fishing reel boxes, hollow curtain rod and there was probably some we didn't find.


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 Post subject: Re: death and your stuff
PostPosted: Tue Sep 13, 2011 5:15 pm 
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Location: central Arkansas
KB58 wrote:
I guess what I'm saying is, having a list doesn't get round having to go through everything at the time of the spouse's demise, where only then can realistic values be assigned.


True, but a list gives a starting point other than "have some auction house send a guy over to lowball everything." With a list and a realistic assessment of condition, she can get a realistic idea of the current prices of similar equipment.

There are also issues with transportation that would have to be dealt with. The balancing machine weighs just under two thousand pounds... but the crank grinder weighs closer to five thousand pounds, and the block broach and mill aren't exactly lightweights, either.

Quote:
Besides, who here wants our spouse to know exactly how much we spend on stuff...


No problem here. Once, when I hooked up the trailer and told her I was headed off to Colorado to pick up another milling machine, her first words were that she'd have to go by the bank to make sure I had enough money.

Tools are good karma... and the workshop has paid the bills more than once, when the local job market didn't need any programmers or system administrators. Partly because of that, she's never griped about a tool purchase.


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 Post subject: Re: death and your stuff
PostPosted: Tue Sep 13, 2011 7:53 pm 
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Posts: 505
Location: Edmonton, Alberta
cheapracer wrote:
trialsmangasgas wrote:
They found thousands of dollars in cash squirreled away inside the pages of his books that his wife had no idea about.


Dutch by chance? When my ex's father died, a Dutchman, we found about 30K all up all over the house and his shed - the first lot was found as his tools were being sorted and then from there on in the most amazing places such as under the corner of the bathtub, his fishing reel boxes, hollow curtain rod and there was probably some we didn't find.



I'm Dutch, and there's no chance of me squirreling money away. I spend every penny I get! :D
Same goes for my Dutch dad, but my grandpa might be different. He was in WW2, so who knows.


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 Post subject: Re: death and your stuff
PostPosted: Tue Sep 13, 2011 8:18 pm 
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Location: BC, Canada. eh?
RacerDan wrote:
"I figure that you would eventually remarry and I don't want some other a**hole

using my stuff.."

She looked at me and said: "What makes you think I'd marry another a**hole?"



I thought you were gonna tell us she said "He's not an a**hole, and he wouldn't want your stuff, he has his own..." :roll: :D

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 Post subject: Re: death and your stuff
PostPosted: Tue Sep 13, 2011 8:50 pm 
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Just last night my wife and I had a serious sit-down about this very topic. I told her I never want to live in a vegetative, non-responsive state, hooked up to a machine and getting my only nutrients dripped into me from a bottle.

She responded by unplugging my laptop and throwing out my Jack Daniels.

-dave "how long have you been here?" hempy

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 Post subject: Re: death and your stuff
PostPosted: Tue Sep 13, 2011 9:11 pm 
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Location: Waterloo, WI
dhempy wrote:
Just last night my wife and I had a serious sit-down about this very topic. I told her I never want to live in a vegetative, non-responsive state, hooked up to a machine and getting my only nutrients dripped into me from a bottle.

She responded by unplugging my laptop and throwing out my Jack Daniels.

-dave "how long have you been here?" hempy


Oh I just have to use that! :D

Seriously, I've been dealing with my 80-ish parents who are still relatively healthy but are starting to have problems. They are just below the "hoarder" level. My dad has seen the light and is trying to get rid of stuff but my mom is a bit resistant. All I know is after every time we visit them, I try to get a little more organized, not have so much stuff around that may only be used "someday".

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 Post subject: Re: death and your stuff
PostPosted: Wed Sep 14, 2011 10:23 am 
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My wife's grandfather died a couple of years ago. Big antique car guy, 3 or 4 cars older than 1920. Anyways, there is still a TON of his stuff that my father-in-law is slowly starting to deal with. My wife's grandmother wouldn't know what to do with it all (even if she didn't have Alzheimers). A good reminder to not overload on just plain stuff and stay organized. Makes it all a little easier to deal with.


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 Post subject: Re: death and your stuff
PostPosted: Tue Jan 17, 2012 4:59 am 
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I've got a buddy that recently flew out to Vegas for a biker wedding. (Just after a casino shooting of a club vp an hour or so away....) Before he left, he gave me a rather serious request should he get clipped.

Long story short, I was to race 30 minutes north and remove a certain dresser drawer from the house before his mother got around to gathering his belongings... Something about not wanting her to find the Easy Rider mags and the fleshlight.... :lol:

I've kept a general gameplan since 18 or so. Never had much faith in myself to make it very far. :P


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