Commonwealth Journal

Columns

May 21, 2014

Sometimes it’s hard to let go of an old friend

Perhaps the first song I played on my new stereo should have been “Let It Go.” Okay, not really. We hear that thing enough lately. But it still would have been fitting.
This weekend, I said goodbye to a fixture in my life for the last 15 years: my stereo.
A grey Aiwa model, it was a right plucky little workhorse. I first purchased it in 1999, my freshman year of college. My dorm roommate had moved out second semester into his own place, leaving me with the run of the place — and by “place,” I mean “cramped space where he entertained socially while I scowled and tried to do homework.”
Along with him had gone the communal CD player we shared, so I headed to the nearest K-Mart and purchased one that was relatively affordable, just so I’d have something to play music on if I wanted.
Mind you, this was par for the course in those days. This was back when dinosaurs roamed the earth, before the iPod. A time when there were still such things as large retail record stores where people actually went to buy physical albums as opposed to just downloading a song off of the interwebs.
Of course, being fairly technology-resistent, that’s what I still do. It’s harder to find places to buy CDs now, but that’s what I still listen to when I’m in the mood for music. To me, downloading an MP3 is a poor substitute for the satisfaction you get when you stroll over to your CD towers, browse the shelves for the perfect album to hit the spot, then take it out of its artfully decorated the case, lay it on the CD tray, push it in and press “PLAY.” It’s almost a ritualistic experience. It brings you closer to the music.

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Columns
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