COMMENT | Books and music – is the MCO hastening the inevitable?

Martin Vengadesan

Modified 29 Jun 2020, 3:39 am

COMMENT | I live in a condo that to some extent resembles a library.

It’s lined wall-to-wall with collections of books and music CDs. Thousands of them, most sorted out alphabetically, chronologically, by genre and in some cases, all three.

In fact, I used to have another large collection of video/DVDs but that eventually gave way to streaming/torrent downloads and the likes of Netflix.

Having spent the better part of my life building up these collections – which I view as gateways to worlds of knowledge and imagination – I am at loathe to think of ever giving them up. When I was growing up, my mother’s rule was “I will always buy you books if you want them, but toys – only once in a while”.

Thus I underwent that cycle – Peter and Jane and Mr Men to Enid Blyton and the Hardy Boys. Shoot magazine, Tintin and Agatha Christie before going through all sorts of phases like John Irving and Jeffrey Archer novels, science fiction and fantasy, Beatnik literature, rock star biographies, works of history and socialist works.

I must confess that quite some time ago, my rate of buying books far surpassed the rate at which I read them, particularly when presented with mass warehouse sales like the Big Bad Wolf sales. Nonetheless, I was bitten by the collector’s bug.

Similarly, my music collection was a reflection of a passion inherited from my father. I remember being fascinated by the intense sounds that would jump out of the cassette player when you pressed play. And mind you, there was a long line - my grandfather had gramophone records and when I was growing up I saw my father and uncles go through ... 

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