I have a lot of stuff in my house. Some of it is even kind of valuable. This isn’t an invitation to burglars because most of it is in a difficult-to-liquidate form. My house is like a science fiction episode of Antiques Roadshow. For example, I have the original Star Wars soundtrack on vinyl. According to eBay, it’s worth like $25, which is great, except that I’d have to find someone to actually pay $25 for it. Similarly, my metal lunchbox collection is worth hundreds of dollars, but again, I’d have to find someone interested enough in a vintage 1975 Space: 1999 lunch box to pay to have it shipped wherever they are. I know what you’re thinking: Who wouldn’t want Barbara Bain’s face on a lunchbox? But it’s actually not that easy to find buyers.
I bring this up because I am trying to thin out the number of things I own, and most of the items I have in my house are useless collectibles. Perhaps that’s the short definition of collectible—useless items. Don’t get me wrong, some of them are pretty neat and won’t be easily parted with, including the 1988 Commander Riker action figure my sweetheart from college gave me as a gift. In fairness, that thing’s only 3 inches tall so it’s not taking up a lot of room. The lunchbox collection however...I’ve got like 20 of them. And don’t even get me started on my Lord of the Rings Lego sets. They have their own room. EBay tells me they’re a hot commodity.
I don’t know why I even started collecting all this crap in the first place. Perhaps to fill a hole deep in my soul. Believe it or not I’ve collected and sold so much of this kind of stuff over the years that if I actually still had it all, my house would look like a museum of popular culture. I mean more so than it already does. Some of the artifacts I’m trying to clear out are simply no longer technologically relevant. I have every single Star Trek episode from every single series ever made on DVD. (Except Enterprise. In the immortal words of George Takei’s head “way to kill the franchise, Bakula.”) I love Star Trek and will always be interested in watching reruns, but they’re all streaming on Netflix. What’s the point of owning hard media anymore?
Unfortunately, some movies aren’t easily available via streaming, but my hard media versions just don’t cut it. I love owning a VHS copy of the 1977 Rankin-Bass animated version of The Hobbit, but who even has a functional VCR anymore? The tape itself is so degraded that it looks like it was recorded in sepia tones instead of full color. Last time I tried watching it, it was nearly destroyed by the mere process of inserting it into the machine. I could hang onto it and wait until a new breed of hipsters begins collecting VHS tapes with the same vigor that they are currently gobbling up LPs, prompting companies to again manufacture outdated technology, but really, that’s a long term plan to which I’m not prepared to commit. So, what to do with all my stuff? It’s a conundrum.
In summation, does anyone want to make a good faith bid on thirty pounds worth of loose Lego bricks?