S1Ep02 Citizen Kane

Geelong Professional Organiser Blog – “Rosebud” (part 1 of 2)

Professional Organiser, Elise Purkis, demonstrates an easy way to open up a conversation with your hoarder friend or family member.  It’s a discussion which could change a life.


Who’s seen the movie Citizen Kane?

Don’t feel obligated to answer but, as a reformed hoarder, there’s a line in it I think of sometimes. Before I get to that, let me explain a little of the movie for those who haven’t seen this classic of the cinema…

The character Charles Foster Kane was modelled on the real-life historical figure William Randolph Hearst. Hearst was an American newspaper tycoon operating in the late 1800’s. Oh – and he was rich. I’m not talking ‘comfortably rich.’ No, I’m talking ‘debilitatingly rich.’

One of the freedoms vast wealth enables is that of endless acquisition. To a hoarder, that’s very, very attractive. You see, when you’re rich you can always build another shed to organise your stuff in and that makes it much easier to locate your last electricity bill.

In the movie, Kane collected (hoarded?) art, antiquities, animals and more. If you can name it, he wanted it and he didn’t let it go once he had it. So what was the meaning of his famous parting word? Why would a man with such power and who was famous for creating newspapers full of words only have one to utter right at the end of his life? In the movie, the answer is sought by the young reporter obsessed with Kane. For here was a man who had the world at his feet: he influenced governments, public opinion, controlled an empire and hoarded everything and anything yet he reduced it all to one word on his deathbed. So what was the hidden meaning in that single word – “Rosebud”?

Now, of course I won’t spoil the movie – even though it was made in 1941!!! But I would like to pose a simple question to all hoarders out there. If you haven’t seen the movie please watch it before answering. Friends and family of hoarders, this may be an easy way to start a conversation.


What’s your ‘Rosebud’?

To be continued next week…


As they say in the classics – stay tuned!

Geelong’s Professional Organiser

Elise Purkis

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