Physical Attraction

Let me start by saying, no, this post is not about human physical attraction.

No, the other day I was cleaning out some things and I picked up a DVD case and just looked at it for a few moments. I noticed the cover artwork, the case, the weight of the case, etc. I liked the way it felt to hold something physical. As much as I love having my entire music and movie collection as digital files, I do still like the way a physical item feels.

I like books also, but I’ve never had a real connection with them. As much as I like to read, I think the mass production of books is just a waste of resources, especially considering the advances in the last few years with digital books and magazines.

Keeping all of your books seems to be a “free pass” in the minimalist lifestyle. I don’t know how many posts I’ve seen that talk about the difficulties of parting with boxes of books. I’ll tell you what made me part with the excess books I had: moving. We moved several times in less than five years, and after carrying boxes of back-breaking books for the third time, I starting getting rid of them.

I donated them to thrift stores or the library. Some found new homes at yard sales. I have less than five books that I would be sad to get rid of, and they are all non-fiction. Out of the five, only one is my absolute do-anything-to-keep book.

So I don’t have a problem keeping books. Instead, my problem is with movies and just media in general; we have way too much. After our last garage sale I ended up donating about 30 DVDs to my local library. I decided it was the best way to get them out of my house, and if I really had to watch them again, I could just go check them out.

I’ve converted about 70% of our movie collection to digital files, which is really convenient because I have them all on one portable hard drive connected to the TV. No more searching for a missing disc, or having to wait for a disc to load up! It’s been a long process to

convert them, but the end result was well worth it.
Every DVD I’ve converted I have put into boxes, both to keep track of what’s been done, and also to clear out the living room clutter some. But in doing so, I don’t see the artwork of the films, the packaging (which is sometimes pretty cool), or the special features.

I suppose I can relate to the “book people” in this way. There is just something about holding something physical in your hands. I’m trying to compromise with myself, and maybe just leave some discs out and store others away.

What’s your exception? Books? Movies? CDs/Records/Tapes? What do you have a collection of?

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