Transplanted Life
Tuesday, December 09, 2003
Still such a dork
I used to be a big collector. Well, maybe not a big collector - when friends looked at my shelves, they were often impressed by the volume of toys, DVDs, comics, Atari games, etc., but they knew that there were other steps to be taken afterward, the difference between enthusiasm and sickness. Nothing on my shelf was still in plastic-wrap, and the comics could be read without untaping a plastic bag and sliding it out. Very few autographs, as well. I never saw the point; it's just a bit of writing that keeps fanatics from using something for its intended purpose. I suppose they have some value as a memento of meeting someone you admire, or evidence of same, but I've got nothing to prove and if it didn't make enough of an impression on you that you need a memento, it's not that big a deal.

But I did like seeing things lined up in order on the shelf. It annoys me, for instance, when a series of books changes their trade dress midway through, even if it's something as small as Tom Clancy's name going from above the title to the left of it on his hardcovers. Paramount moved their logo from the bottom of the spine to the top on their DVDs midway through releasing the Star Trek films, and that looks goofy. And, good lord, there is just no way to get a consistent look from the three Terminator films on DVD, no matter which editions you buy.

But now my collections are gone, and I'm not sure what to do about that. I was in the mall tonight, doing a little Christmas-and-me shopping, and Suncoast was torture.

On one shelf, they had the new box set releases of Deep Space Nine Season 7 and Buffy Season 5. I look at the $100 price tag on DS9 and move on, but I'm tempted by Buffy. This season is where a lot of the show's problem's start - the weekly torture of wondering why no-one puts a sharp piece of wood through Spike's heart, the relentlessly downbeat atmosphere, the season finale where Joss Whedon basically pulls an explanation out of his ass that makes no sense and which just has to be reversed anyway - but I've got the previous four...

Only I don't. Michelle has them, if she hasn't put them up on ebay or something because she intends to keep my life and has got no interest in my hobbies. And, if that's the case, do I want to go back and buy them again? Buying the same non-consumable thing - not even a quality upgrade - multiple times is no fun. And it's expensive; Michelle's paycheck can't swing rebuilding my collection.

So I put it back. Makes it easier to make a clean break before the sucking that is Seasons 6 & 7 anyway.

Worse, though, are the Muppet toys. Palisades has been putting out some just terrific Muppet action figures since last year, and I had a complete collection before the swap. Including mail-away and exclusive ones, like Kermit in the tuxedo, Vacation Fozzie, and even Vanishing Cream Beaker, and the playsets (Animal w/ Drum Set is one of the best toys ever). And there are the new ones on the shelf - Statler, Waldorf, Clifford, and Bear On Patrol are Wave 6 - plus the last couple waves I hadn't picked up.

And if I don't buy them now, I'll have to pay inflated prices on ebay later. The thing is, most of the toys in my original collection are out of production. Dr. Teeth was hard to find a year ago, let alone now. Rebuilding my collection is more than I can afford as Michelle, but if I don't get switched back soon and they're discontinued...

I suppose the smart thing would be to, oh, grow the heck up or find new hobbies (or collections I can start from scratch). But that's surrendering another piece of my identity, and I'm loath to do that.

In the end, I picked up Firefly (not going to be any more seasons of that) and a couple Muppet figures from Wave 4. I'll probably be picking up more over the next few weeks, in the hopes of someday unifying my collection.


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