Will Bueché

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My non-portable life

Posted in Personal by Will on Friday, August 26th, 2005 ~ 2am

My preference of buying things that are designed to stay in one’s home (re: coffee table books) also affects my DVD collection. That I even have one (a DVD collection) suggests that I assume I’ll be living in a place for awhile. And I have (lived in a place for awhile). But now that I am planning on moving in a few months – with a first foray into one of those big square states – I am finding it really difficult to reconcile my desire to have DVDs serve as room accents (like books used to, remember those?) and the fact that I can’t carry ten linear feet of DVDs in a carry on bag. I can’t even really ship that much volume around. So how does a person like me adapt to the concept of something more portable?

With much uncertainty. But I am certain that at some point, eventually, if I ever live someplace nice, I’ll want those few hundred DVD cases. So I searched the DVD forums and found a box. I’ve bought a storage box designed for storing 100 standard DVD cases (or 200 slim cases like I’ve been using). I needed two of these boxes. They’re just brown cardboard, with a lift-out tray inside so you can have two levels in the same box. I can pack up my DVDs and put the pair of boxes into storage here on the east coast.

But I can’t bring myself to leave the entertainment behind. I need to have access to the movies. They are my books, they are my wine, they are my evenings of relaxation and thought. Even more so since I don’t drink wine and I don’t find much time for books lately. I need them. So I am reluctantly coming to terms with having to put the discs themselves (not the cases, but just the discs) into portable binders. Cue the horror music.

Portable binders. This bothers me on so many levels. It is a level of portability which I am just not comfortable with. To me it says I am adrift, I am like David Bruce Banner on the shoulder of a dusty road. I also am afraid that without the cover art I won’t remember what DVDs have bonus features like commentary tracks and which ones do. My memory isn’t that good. I am sure I won’t remember that kind of detailed info about each of the films, because I have no idea right now about which of my films have commentaries. I surely won’t know it if the cases are 2,000 miles from the discs.

But what choice do I have? Oh, Joan of Arc, if you knew such trials. So, I’ve had to accept that it will be uncomfortable, and difficult, to have bare DVDs. But as it may be the only practical way to ship out ~350 discs to myself in another location, binders may be the only way to do it.

I’ve heard horror stories about binders being pinched, robbing a person of their entire lifetime collection of CDs (or DVDs) in one swift grab. So I am not keen on the usual CaseLogic binders. Although a fine product (particularly those Koskin ones — made from the flesh of Koala bears, you know)(not so, terrible falsehood) — they’re too easily recognized. They’re theft targets to anyone who walks into your room and eyeballs the scene. No, I think I’ll have to go with Unikeep binders, which I’ve long used for storing other things. They’re those completely sealed on-all-sides, entirely plastic binders that snap shut all around. On a shelf, they look like nothing. They look like white, semi-transparent phone books. No details. Just a cubist sort of vaguely notebook sized thing. I think thieves wouldn’t even notice them if they looked right at them.

It’s ten feet of DVDs pared down to ten inches. Maybe I’ll come to like it. But I already miss the silvery metallic foil cover of X-Men, and I haven’t even boxed it up yet.

So, this is the drama of my non-portable life. Coming to terms with a way of life that is pretty much opposite of my own. It isn’t about the DVDs, it’s about security.

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