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A white speaker cover has fallen off the living room ceiling and now waits its next step. For the moment, it is standing upright on a shelf, looking like something from a plate collection, the type painted little old ladies use for wall decorations. The house has speakers throughout the house which, when hooked up to the stereo system, plays music in all the rooms. It seems a quaint and outdated system and we haven’t used it in ten years.  Indeed, the stereo system with its CD and DVD players sits inert and unused. I’m not certain if the cable system runs through it. I suspect not.  Until we drag out the extension ladder to put back the mentioned cover, I might as well put it in the cupboard which contains the DVD collection and – wait for it – the VHS tapes.  We have heaps.


What to do with all this antiquated technology is not clear. My inner-Kondo wants to sweep it all into the rubbish but I feel sheepish to throw out perfectly-operable CDs/DVDs/VCR tapes. I wonder if anyone would want them. Probably not.  Donation centers are probably snippy about these sorts of things; they could fill their bins with our discards.  When it comes to old things no longer useful, Someone takes the opposite tact, what I call ‘The W.C. Fields approach’ * If old things aren’t causing problems, just let them stay where they are. This includes a large box in the garage, loaded with telephone cords, computer cords, and various plug-in cords for devices no longer with us. Oh the pain. **

In the bedroom on the shelf below the lamp between the two easy chairs is a black leather pan in the shape of a casserole dish. In it rest our two iPods. Their defunct batteries are no longer available so to play them requires me to insert them into an iPod stand /speaker (remember these?). Once in a while I play mine even though all its contents are in my iPhone and far more accessible. I suppose the feeling this evokes must be similar to thems with old 8-track players.  With that said I think I will get out the ladder and return the speaker cover to its rightful spot, if only for appearance sake.

*Groucho Marx once visited W.C. Fields who showed him in his attic were crates of various liquor bottles.  “Bill,” he asked, “why do you got all this booze up here for? Prohibition’s been over for years”. To which Mr. Fields replied “It may come back”.

**I am often tempted to toss them one night while Someone is sleeping on the grounds he would never notice. I don’t because this is sneaky but I also fear as soon as I throw them out a mystery cord Someone will next day announce he needs it and where is it he can’t find it.  It could happen.

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