There are advantages to living with boxes and shelves and crates and piles and piles and piles of stuff, and every so often one of them manifests itself. Like last night, when I located a copy of a nine-year-old article from The New Yorker for Lisa in under 20 minutes. I was excessively proud of myself.
Then we spent a couple of hours alphabetizing five boxes' worth of unfiled 7" singles, and the pride turned to a weird, curdled mixture of nostalgia and why-have-I-wasted-my-life-with-this-stuff. I hitched my wagon to a battery-powered archaism, I thought, and rode it as the battery slowly wore down. I mean, I love it all: it's the water I swim in. I thought "man! this one is great!" multiple times every minute. For a few moments, I thought "aaagh! I don't wanna be a record collector any more!," too. But that's not true, either: being a collector, or rather having the collection, is a real and immense joy to me. What I was feeling last night is that I just don't want to have been a collector. I just want to have come home one day and found boxes and boxes of Caramel and Caroliner and Clarence Carter singles sitting neatly filed on my shelves. Does that make any sense?