More whiny-ass musing on the indelibility of youth and dangers of overabundance. This What Do I Know dude is worn out physically and emotionally by packing 5,000 CDs and wondering if he has gained anything over when he had 60 cassettes he knew by heart. He’s a flipping piker: I have to move 25,000 records and CDs and not for one moment do I wonder if I would be better off without them. I crave variety and specificity and if I want to hear all the Toy Dolls’ records, that’s what I want to hear.
So has the writer gained something by accumulating 4940 recordings more than he used to have? Yes, he has gained something: access to variety and granularity of musical mood and experience – even if he doesn’t listen to all 5000 with any regularity, he CAN listen to any one of them any time he wants.
You want to know what makes me want to defenestrate someone? When they come over to the house to socialize and I ask what they would like to hear, and they say, “You pick it out – there’s too much to choose from,” as if that is something BAD. Would you rather I had 60 cassettes, you pud? Isn’t variety GOOD? You don’t have to look through them all – just look around until you find something you like, or something that looks interesting – no pressure, no hassles.
So anyway, here’s what the guy has to say:
- Less is More
….After stacking hundreds upon hundreds of cds in boxes, ripping a tape gun across the top, marking the outside with a fat red marker and stacking them all in the corner, it hit me – why am I hauling all this crap around? Am I any more satisfied – musically – with a collection of music that is a thousand-times larger than when it all fit into a single briefcase?
The music on those cassettes – some of which weren’t the most sophisticated, mature, or with any lasting value (some of it was total crap) – shaped and defined those early years like nothing I’ve listened to since. I can still remember all the lyrics from every single one of the albums in that case; the “flow” of the track progression, the time of year I acquired it (early R.E.M. always “smells” like Fall and Winter to me), and the life-altering events that indirectly revolved around them.
Sure, I’ve purchased tons of great albums between then and now, and I am still an avid collector of new music. But is the experience any richer? Am I more fulfilled?
If you aren’t, you should be.