Sunday, January 27, 2008

The Age of Things

This picture was just taken yesterday. (I know, you're welcome, not that you can tell much difference from my recycled shop window pix.) The shop is Home Girls on Burnet and they sell vintage stuff. You can glimpse a deco-influenced piece as well as the cat and me. All vintage things.

I'm reading Objects of Desire at the moment. (Among, you know, all those other books.) Its subtitle is "The Lives of Antiques and Those Who Pursue Them." It's funny, while downsizing (I'm getting rid of this book as soon as I've read it!) to read about serious collectors.

The older something is, the more trouble I have throwing it out. This is true whether it's a hand-written note or a ticket stub. A magazine or a video tape.

Yesterday I was gung-ho to get some stuff straight. I started a standard chore (doing laundry) and then started on the downsizing/organizing. I was attacking a shelf where I'd stacked a few old VHS tapes I hadn't had the heart to discard. One was labeled "1982 Wimbledon, Day 4." In fact, I discovered it had the Women's final, Men's semis and commercials for several of FFP's old clients. (Not to mention technology commercials for IBM that were hilarious.) I did manage to toss one other tape I couldn't get to play, but I wasted a lot of time watching this one. The pleasures of it! Men in short, tight shorts. Chris Evert, married at the time to John Lloyd listed as Mrs. J.M. Lloyd on the scoreboard. An umpire who sounded like the butler in "Rocky Horror Picture Show." The wooden rackets. Admittedly, I'm a sucker for tennis (witness all the Australian Open coverage I've been watching of late) but this is way beyond that. I could give this tape up (and probably will) but there is not much chance of recapturing it later on DVD. The match videos available on DVD probably have British commentary and certainly no great old commercials. And there aren't many available, I've found. The tapes are deteriorated, sure. They are over twenty-five years old! And I could transfer them to DVDs myself, but that's way too much trouble. So I'll probably watch this one last time and give them up. We won't even talk about the fact that there are still four VHS players (maybe five?) in this house. The one I played this on a friend was tossing out and I wired it in the bedroom so I could watch film festival submissions on VHS there.

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