Months ago, I noticed my stapler was out of staples. More accurately, the stapler was likely almost out of staples. I purchased staples at -- where else? -- Staples. I bought a package of staples. The purchase encompassed two plastic-wrapped cardboard packages of 5000 "standard staples" each, or "agrafes standard," in French. From a glance at each cardboard package, the staples have yet to be used. At all. They are arranged in 12 rows, with each row piggybacked oppositely with its twin set. Staples of beauty, order, precision. (Allow me to do the math: 5000 staples divided by 24 rows, equaling 208.3333 in each row. That sounds wrong for this assemblage of one-quarter-inch (6.35mm) staples, made in China. Nevertheless, I am now disquieted by this observation of staple abundance, overabundance, if you will.
I will not be able to use up all these staples in my lifetime.
Not even close.
Perhaps if I went on a binge, an orgiastic, frenetic outburst of stapling activity, I could approach the use, the employment, of 10,000 staples (remember: each little carton says "qty 5000" [without the comma]). Still doubtful.
I could try some sort of performance art or stapling obsession of loose documents, papers, receipts, bills, notes, scraps.
Why does this bother me?
Supplies of salt, pepper, and paper clips do not disquiet me in the same way.
Something to do with grasping versus letting go? Mortality? Numerology? The metaphors that "staples" invoke?