Sleep, snow, cycling and stuff

Today’s weather phenomenon is: snow. Hurray! Enough of that though – if you want more, check the web 2.0, it’s all there.

I had the greatest sleep ever last night. Seven and a half solid hours from when my head hit the pillow, followed by an hour of snoozin’ and dreamin’. All good dreams, too – when I got up for a wee I fixed, in my memory, the point at which my dream had paused when I woke up so I could fall back into it. Of course I didn’t, but it was replaced by something equally lovely. When sleep is good, it’s really fucking good.

I’ve got a cycling jacket up for sale on eBay and I’m already feeling pressured – buying is fine, no worries (and I’ve become quite good at it), but selling, not only do you have to actually, like, package it up, stick stamps on it and take it to the post office (before Xmas, argh), but you have to describe it honestly and accurately and answer questions about it which are sure to disappoint some people. Having said that, why didn’t I include a buy it now price?! Idiot Mark.

Despite all the above, I need to have a good hard think about how to get rid of much of the clutter in my house for a decent return where possible. Problem is, my of my stuff is either worthless to me, worthless to others, or, more usually, both. I guess the charity shop gets to make that call, ultimately, but I have decision to make. In particular about CDs. Oddly, because records are already so obsolete, I don’t have any problem hanging onto them Apart from anything else, they look pretty, and I have several frames into which I can slip my favourite record sleeve du jour. Oh, and they’re a lot harder to record onto a computer (especially when your record player’s defunct).

But CDs… I started buying them in 1995, by which time, at 21, I was still in love with music as ever (NB this “ever” expires in about 1999 or so – I’m now a miserable old curmudgeon who doesn’t go to gigs because it interferes with my gout, or dropsy, or similar), but the wonderful excitement of owning music had been replaced by complacency. I also listened to fewer albums as a whole, thanks to the fantastic 5-CD system I had in my Technics player – a kind of primitive shuffle system that revolutionised listening for me*.

So CDs aren’t “magic” for me, but they do take up a lot of room, albeit in a lovely shelving unit which would probably look bare without them. I can’t imagine many of them are worth anything. I also reckon that regadless of everything I’ve just written, I’ll find that when I do start my great purge, I’ll actually be much more emotionally drawn to most of them than I thought.

And so it goes for most of my stuff. Old kitchen equipment given to me by my folks when I moved in (10 years ago!!) and have never used? It could still come in handy… Clothes I haven’t worn for years – I struggle to get rid of them because, well, I did like them once, and excising them feels somehow, stupidly, like excising a memory. God I’m emo.

Anyway, this is just self-indulgent thinking aloud, and I’m starting to bore myself. In way more important news, this morning I finally achieved my target of 4,000 miles on my bike in 2009. Pretty pleased with that – about two thirds of it is simply riding to and from work, and with a few more big rides next year I’m going to aim for 5,000.

*Paradoxically, I’ve recently been listening to more albums/artists and fewer shuffles on my ipod because there is now so much music thereon that I don’t really want to listen to. There’s only so much Carter Family and Mountain Goats you can deal with in one sitting.

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    • James
    • December 16th, 2009

    Go digital; that’s the future. I’m looking at removing all CDs, DVDs, Blurays and books from my place. There’s precious space for them in a London flat and no need for them with the advent of tech like the Kindle or AppleTV. I’ll only be keeping the books I truly cherish (or make me look clever, innit), the rest will go.

  1. Here’s a problem, though. Until recently, Apple was selling songs on itunes where you were allowed to save the songs on 5 computers. What happens when you buy computer no. 6? You lose the song, or have to buy it again. Now, multiply that cost + annoyance by thousands.

    It’s a specific example, but non-specifically, I honestly don’t know that I trust “digital” enough with my Stuff. I love the convenience and the portability, I just don’t feel confident in the permanence.

      • James
      • December 16th, 2009

      Simple really, don’t buy from iTunes (there are other options out there), and backup backup backup.

  2. That was just one example. See also: formats that have become obsolete, trapping the data; or formats which degrade.

      • Mark S
      • December 16th, 2009

      That’s why open-formats are good 🙂 I honestly can’t see MP3 going obsolete anytime soon but most of the more obscure filetypes **mostly propriety shite from MS** are there to tie you into a specific vendor.

    • PJM
    • December 21st, 2009

    Tried to upload a (bought) ebook to the Sony Reader last night, only to be told I couldn’t because it was already registered to someone else. Someone else being my wife, who has (sort of) given the Reader to me, so what business is it of, erm, the computer’s?

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