“Last Friday saw me put down my favorite jeans. They’d already been patched up after a complete crotch blowout, which now extended to the thigh. It was time to let go. They weren’t spectacularly rare or expensive—just a pair of dark, slim Uniqlo jeans. But I’d worn them almost every other day for the last 12 months, and the stories of an entire year lived in their dyed cotton. I’d picked them up in San Francisco during a final, unforgettable college spring break. I’d rolled them up and waded through Croatian beaches the summer after graduation. I’d covered them in dust and dirt scaling a national park in Maine. To just throw them in the trash, on top of soggy coffee grounds and pizza crust, seemed too undignified a fate. I pressed them to my lips and gave them a final kiss before letting go. My girlfriend laughed at me.” —E.T.