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Gay men on the verge of a hoarding meltdown.

So my partner and I went to his family Thanksgiving this year, and we're back home now. We're pretty much minimalists - we don't like a lot of stuff. Our house is modern and spare, and we like it that way. Clean, clean, clean, with room to think and room to move. His gay brother and brother's partner, however, are the opposite, as are his parents, who live in the same large house. The place is done up in what I like to call "High Gay" - oriental rugs, jewel toned colors, faux-painted EVERYTHING, dark "dramatic" color treatments on the walls, and lots of sparkly baubles everywhere. Fringe, too. Lots of gold fringe. Imagine gay style circa 1992. Every surface has a tchotchke - lots of mediocre "art glass" and "antiques" - old tarnished silver picture frames everywhere - I swear to God the only thing missing is a few dozen lace doilies. They live like impoverished Victorian ladies. Except they aren't impoverished. And everything - and I mean everything - is blanketed with a light snow of cat and dog hair - even the kitchen counters. Even the drawers and closets are crammed full of stuff - literally you open a door and things fall out. A random kitchen drawer might contain the following: Some hotpads A few old greeting cards A screwdriver or two Dried bits of food Cat hair A wooden spoon An ancient pack of gum A beanie baby Et cetera, et cetera. We stayed there for 3 nights and by the time we left this morning, I was about to come out of my skin. I had to resist the urge to light the place on fire and blame it on a dusty paper mache Thanksgiving accessory placed too close to the kitchen stove. And to top the whole thing off, they think their house is GORGEOUS. I want to remove their gold-leafed blinders and hand them a scrub brush.

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