Monday, April 21, 2014

The Necessity of Possession

I had forgotten about this -- that I wanted to write about it. I sat down to write about something else, and, as usual, I put on the headphones to listen to music while writing and I selected the album I wanted from my mp3 list. For some unknown reason, the album wasn't "there." There was that little picture of a cloud, showing I had to download it to my phone if I wanted to listen.

Yesterday, mind you, it was there. I listened to the whole thing. Not today, for some strange reason. But, see -- I paid for it. It is supposed to belong to me, but what I really paid for was some kind of sonic code. I have no record in my possession; I have no CD. I have code. 

So, I am a dinosaur, right? But, by the teeth of all the saints, I want to possess the things I pay for, no questions asked. 

Shocked? I know we have been conditioned to shun material goods. I know "money can't buy happiness." I know "we can't take it with us." But I think this is getting a little crazy. 

When I pay for something, I want to be able to put it on a shelf and admire it as part of my collection. If it is a record, I want to be able to take it down, put it on the turntable (or into the CD tray) and listen to is as I read the lyrics or check out the musical personnel on each track. (I spent many happy hours doing just that in my younger days.)

Maybe I caved-in to getting music "virtually" because music is an ethereal art. I don't know. I have said before: I will never read books on an e-reader. I say this not to be judgmental of those who do -- it just does not appeal to me. I like to hold books; I like to see them on my shelves. Does this make me greedy?

I know -- I'm weird. I'm weird because I want contact with physical things. I want to collect things that are dear to me and I want to hold them and I want to look at them in the natural light of day, not as pixels. 

When we see our friends -- our real ones, not the thousand dear buddies we have on Facebook -- we embrace them; we shake their hands. Why? Because humans need contact. We need touch. Husbands and wives can (and should) be intellectually compatible, but if they don't touch and make love, they might as well be pen pals.

What if Chicken Little is right? 

I don't want to be a hoarder of things, but I want to actually possess the things that I love. Having things is not evil; and if we shell out money for them, they should be available to us when we want them. 

I know one could argue that by giving up actually possession and accepting virtual possession, we are moving one step closer to shrugging off the physical world -- one step closer to becoming one with the universe. Well, you know what? I'm not ready to be one with the universe. I still enjoy walking barefoot in the dirt. I still love pounding the drums. I still like a good, firm handshake. And I want to hear my music when I want to hear it, pulled down from my alphabetized shelves and held in my greedy fingers. 

So sue me -- in bitcoins, though. 

1 comment:

  1. "So sue me -- in bitcoins, though."


    Believe me, you're not crazy or weird for liking the touch and feel of books and material things.

    Speaking of lyrics, though.