There is a primal urge in all humans to collect things. I don't know why we need to have stuff, but we do. You have to be really careful about what you collect, because there are a lot of really dumb things that you can own. You want a collection that's going to be worth something some day or at least has some sort of cultural importance like books. If you have books then at least people will think that you're smart despite that fact that you've never read anything in your life. Here are the worst things to start collecting.
Taxidermy is the art of stuffing the skin of dead animals to make creepy skin statues. There's no reason you should ever own any stuffed animals unless you're a hunter and live in an abaondoned old farm house. The worst thing about taxidermy is that there is a lot of really bad amateur taxidermy that barely looks like the animal that it is supposedly made out of. There is no faster way to scare away a potential mate than to say, "Would you like to see my collection of dead animals?"
Classic Video Games
Owning classic video games may seem like a good idea. Unlike most of the things on this list, it's something that you can actually use. You probably think that if you buy a bunch of old games then you'll play them all the time. It's just not going to happen. Most old games just aren't very fun by today's standards and any of them that are fun can probably be found in one of the many on-line stores that are offered by current generation consoles. The only reason to start collecting old games is if you are just really in to blowing on stuff and then yelling at your TV because Silver Surfer on NES is impossibly hard.
There's a weird business model for past their prime celebrities where they sell autographs. If you've ever been to a comic book convention then you've seen the rows and rows geriatric actors who were in one episode of Buck Rogers. The only reason to collect celebrity autographs is to remind yourself why you never tried to become an actor.
New Action Figures
There was a time when collecting action figures was actually a good idea. No one thought that they'd be worth anything so everyone ripped open the boxes and played with them until they fell apart. In the 90's old action figures became crazy valuable. This resulted in a new generation of people keeping their action figures in mint condition in the boxes. That's why they aren't worth anything any more. There are just too many of them on the market. In today's world, action figures have gotten insanely expensive because toy companies know that single 40 year old dues will shell out huge amounts of money for that fleeting sense of nostalgia from owning a toy from some obscure cartoon from their childhood.
The idea of owning swords is way cooler than the reality of owning swords. There are swords that are worth a lot of money, but I doubt you're going to be buying any full tang hand folded steel katanas from Japan. You're buying some dull polished aluminum crap from some hillbilly at a flea market. The only reason to own swords is if a zombie apocalypse suddenly breaks out. It's going to really suck for you when your cheap swords break on the first day of the apocalypse.
Empty Booze Bottles
For some reason, a lot of people start collecting empty booze bottles when they first start drinking. They think it's cool to let everyone know that they like to party. What people really think is, "This person has a drinking problem." Take all of your old booze bottles and go to the recycling center. Then you'll get some money for more booze you disgusting booze hound.
If you are in to collecting Blu-Ray movies, you should have a conversation with someone with a massive DVD or VHS or BETA or LaserDisc collection. There will always be an amazing new video format on the horizon, and you've totally got to upgrade all of your movies or you're not a real film buff. Then you haven't take all of your old movies to a used movie store and sell them for maybe 5% of what you paid for them. Unless it's something that you know you're going to watch over and over then just rent or stream it.
You've seen these machines at just about any amusement park in the country. For only one dollar and a penny, these machines will press a logo in to a penny that you get to take home and keep forever. These are supposed to be a reminder of everywhere that you've visited. Really they're a reminder of how bad you are at spending money. Technically, defacing money is illegal so I think that anyone who presses a penny should have to go to jail.
I know a lot of people that collect the worst art they can possibly find. Whether it's cat statues, ugly family photos, or unicorn paintings, they want their house covered in the worst art that has ever been created. You don't want your house to look like an art gallery that only a crazy old cat lady would curate.
What dumb stuff do you collect? Let me know on twitter @zachlunch or in the comments below!