Tuesday, May 17, 2005

The 5000 Bicycle Man And Other Tales Of Household Hoarding

LOS ANGELES (Wireless Flash - FlashNews) – A professional organizer in Los Angeles makes her living wading through rat-traps that even Sanford & Son wouldn’t touch with a ten-foot-pole.

Dorothy Breininger cleans up after “hoarders” – people who compulsively collect everything from animals to food to newspapers.

Her clients include an elderly man who slept in a recliner on his porch for 30 years because his house was stuffed with 5000 bicycles, and a woman who almost perished in a kitchen fire because firefighters couldn’t find a path into her home through her piles of home shopping purchases.

Then there was the young professional woman who always dressed impeccably but lived in an apartment filled floor to ceiling with rotting food, napkins and newspapers.

Breininger says hoarders do it for a number of reasons, but can often kick the habit by taking medication and having a helper regularly clean out the clutter.

She’s the co-author of the new book Time Efficiency Makeover (HCI).

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