Selling it all

I took my CD collection to the record store the other day.

It took a while to get through the doors.

To be honest, the box was heavy, and I was by myself, and the door wouldn’t open properly. There were physical strains accompanying the mental ones. But, yeah. I’ll admit. It was kind of hard.

For a little while, at least.

It wasn’t so much that I was selling the CDs – after all, they’d sat in our basement for a full year without so much as a peep, and before that they had been pushed to the attic where they rarely saw human contact – but that it felt so irreversible.

Over 1000 albums. Stacked, alphabetized, moved twice, organized and reorganized. A representation of two people’s musical tastes; a chronicle of over 15 years of changes and favorites and succumbing to pressure.

And then, I turned around and left. The box sat on the counter. I’d hoped for the best. They were literally out of my hands.

At some point over the past few months, a string of nostalgia snapped. The notion of holding onto a physical representation of an abstract sense became ridiculous. The music wasn’t on those CDs – it was in the air, in my ears and (oh, man, here comes the sap) IN MY HEART.

(Coincidentally, it is on our computer, too.)

When I shifted my view of music from something that you hold and collect to something you listen to and enjoy and allow to run free, I understood I had to move. To unload the discs while I still could, while someone else was still interested in buying them, before others came to the same realization: that holding on to CDs – especially if they’re already stored on a computer and an iPod or whatever it is you store your music on these days – has become as antiquated as cassette tapes and 8-tracks.

Maybe you’ve already done this. Maybe you progressed faster than I did.

Maybe. Then again, maybe you’re in the same place I was. If so, take it from me – a former CD junkie:

Your music is not tied to those discs. You can let them go.

This was lovingly handwritten on July 8th, 2010