What do you mean I have to grow up? Just because I’ve got a kid on the way? What do you mean I have to clear space and make decisions and prioritize?
That’s what’s been going on in this geek’s house over the last little while. With the imminent arrival of an addition to our family, the Queen and I have been culling all of our stuff. In theory, this is a ridiculously dificult thing for me to wrap my head around. I’ve been a collector for nearly 20 years. Comics, movies, and music. But when you need space you also need to decide what you can and can’t live without. What you don’t mind packing away so that it’s out of site, if not entirely out of mind. On Monday I detailed what went into putting away some pieces of my comic book collection. I think that may have been the easiest part of this whole endeavour – those titles, after all, were all DC books. But the next portion of packing could have proved to be that much harder.
The packing away of excess DVD’s was slightly complex. A few months back I picked up a case that would store roughly 320 DVD’s. The question would be, which ones was I willing to actually put away? The whole thing with collecting is that if you agree to hide something away and not allow it to be readily displayed, what kind of statement are you making? If you hide that copy of Heat, one of your favourite movies, does it mean that it’s no longer in the upper echelon of movie faves? You see the complex decision making process I was faced with.
But at the end of the day, big decisions had to be made. And that pretty much entailed putting almost EVERYTHING away. Go big or go home, right? That means every movie the Queen and I own (including the superhero titles I was determined to keep out), every concert DVD…heck, even every wrestling DVD I own (which took up nearly half a book themselves) – all of them have found themselves a pleasant home in a DVD book in no particular order while the plastic boxes have been binned and boxed and shipped to the basement.
What did stay on display? A few choice titles that may yet find themselves and all the TV Shows on DVD in our possession, for no particular reason other than that they look nice on our shelves. And while all of our DVD’s may not be in a particular order, I know where to find my Spider-Man 2.1 when I need to and I managed to put all my Rob Zombie movies on the same page, so I feel that mission was accomplished.
Finally, it’s come down to packing away a significant portion of my music collection. The collection I’ve been building since I purchased my very first cd in 1990 – The Cult’s Sonic Temple. A collection that features some ridiculous purchases that I don’t necessarily understand how they got there in the first place i,e. The Rocky Horror Picture Show box set. Seriously, it’s there. Along with a whole whack of cd’s that I’ve amassed, some of which still remain in their plastic wrap. But with a baby on board my cd collection is facing some sort of transition.
After mulling over whatever options there were, I wound up deciding on a few methods. The first was to go through 90% of my box set collections and place the discs in three ridiculously priced cd specific holders. This meant binning up the boxes, along with their liner notes. This was a tough choice, but seeing as how my music expertise requirements have shifted over the last few years packing up the boxes didn’t seem like such a sacrifice. I know where the notes are if I need them.
But what about all those random cd’s in my collection? The initial idea was to put those in booklets as well along with their booklets, with the jewel cases getting the bin treatment. But as I started putting things away the other night (with some help from our good friend JP) an epiphany struck me. I needed space. Our house needed space. And our new addition was going to need space to. And there’s a lot of stuff that we need to put away to make room. So this collector decided that, rather than store away a whole bunch of cd jewel cases that would end up taking up more room than was necessary, it was time to say sayonara to those pieces of plastic. I took all the notes and tray papers from out of the discs, stored tem together in a booklet along with their respective cds, and sent the jewel cases to a better place (my wife’s studio where they’ll be put to good use).
While these decisions may seem silly and far from significant to some, the collectors out there know that throwing out something as seemingly trivial as a 20 year old jewel case is a big deal. But rather than mourn all the “stuff” I’m packing up or getting rid of, be it comics or dvds or cds,I find myself far more excited about what the future holds.
And now we’ve got the room to hold it in.