when people wonder where my fondness for collecting all things obsolete comes from…
dad used to be an audio/video engineer back in the days of analog.
during the digital shift, he basically decided, “i’m too old to learn all this shit,”
retired, and started collecting gear.
this isn’t even 1/10 of what’s scattered around the house.
we argue, a lot. he makes me so angry sometimes that i just want to shake him.
the rare times we do get along are when we’re together in his listening room
playing billie holiday records and agreeing on things like,
“they don’t make music like how they used to.”
and then i introduced him to wilco the other day and he said, “oh, this is good.”
when i was really young, i was notorious for being impish and stubborn.
my conventional parents used to discipline me and vinh by spanking us (of course, this was acceptable at the time).
one afternoon, i got ahold of a crayola crayon box and began drawing a myriad of little stick-figured men on my bedroom wall.
my dad was furious! he unbuckled his belt and whipped me.
i didn’t cry this time. instead, i banged my head against the wall, clenched my fists and smacked myself repeatedly.
“YOU CAN’T HURT ME! I can hurt me more than YOU can!!”
and continued deliriously slamming my tiny frame against the wall.
the initial expression of bewilderment on my dad’s face ceased and he jerked his head back, laughing.