I crave music. That is my problem. That said, it’s not really a problem… Being a musician(despite what some say about singers and tenors specifically), it’s a good thing that I crave it, otherwise I am in the wrong profession. But, what I do to fill this craving is what’s questionable…bordering on ethically reprehensible.
Going back a little while (2 years-ish)… I had to re-format my computer because it was being stupid, and I had a fairly good collection of music on my computer that I listened to pretty regularly. Unfortunately, this re-formatting had the timing of in-laws, and happened about 3 weeks before my month long sojourn to Europe with my choir to sing in France & Spain. My collection was about 24Gbs, and since I didn’t get the chance to back it up, I knew that this was not going to be a quick job, but I wanted to have all of it and was determined to get as much of it back as possible. At this point in time, I had been an avid buyer of CDs, either at a store or from iTunes. Obviously, I had some music from the local library, but no more than really 20-30 CDs. One thing I knew for sure was that I was not going to repurchase the CDs I had from iTunes, and, miraculously enough, the library had a lot of the CDs that I had bought, so I promptly checked those out and as many as I could of the ones that I had originally “borrowed” from the library. I found out, that the library puts a limit on how many CDs you can have checked out at one time (30). So, as I was rebuilding my collection, I went to the library about 2-3 times a week to check out CDs. My close friend made fun of me for this saying that once I had started, I would not be able to stop. I eventually became so engrossed with getting new CDs at the library that I was not getting time to put on CDs that I actually owned. As it turned out, as unsurprising as it is, I was unable to get all of my music back onto my iPod, but I got about 20Gbs back, so I wasn’t suffering for the month long trip.
As a side note (in the present), I have had the most paradoxical luck with my iPods. I originally bought a 20Gb and thought that I’d never fill it, but eventually did. Well, it had problems, and when I sent it back to Apple to fix, I received a 30Gbs back, as this was then the smallest iPod available. Then the same thought went through, and lo and behold, there was 27Gbs of music on my iPod. Then, this one went on the fritz and I sent it in, and what did my eyes behold when I opened the returning package? An 80Gbs iPod. (I was always happy whenever this happened, but it was always a strange experience.) Anyway, back to our story…
We are now in the present, for those of you keeping track. So, I essentially go to the library about once a week and get 30 CDs and put them on my laptop and return them within 2-3 days. (I know, I’m an awful person) Recently, I figured out that I can check out more than 30 if I use the self-checkout machine. So, instead of 30, I usually get 45. However, when I have something on hold, I have to be sneaky and only check out some with the person at the counter, because they obviously won’t check out 45 CDs to anyone. Today, when I was at the library, I was already close to my limit when I went to the counter, so I had to play everything cool. When I went to check out my remaining CDs, I noticed that the person who helped me before who actually checked my items “checked out” before she did the CDs to make sure I wasn’t going to go over 30 was not helping anyone, and I definitely couldn’t go to the check out machine that was in very close proximity of her with out anyone there. So what do I do? I go back to the CDs/movies to “browse” until I saw a line form that would cover my transgressions. (Is this a sign of an addiction?) And when I left, I made sure not to make eye contact with anyone, specifically the woman who helped me.
In addition to all of the public library CDs, I am a large user of ILL(InterLibrary Loan). I go to worldcat and find the CDs that I want, and put in a request at my university’s library, and about 2 weeks later, I have a CD…or score. I have received about 100 CDs from here alone.
I haven’t paid for a CD or score(music) in over a year. I am currently at 90.27Gbs of music, which translates to: 23, 714 songs or 67 days, 22 hours, 4 minutes and 34 seconds of music.
I figure admitting that I do this is one of the first steps, right? Granted, I don’t take this very seriously, otherwise I would have stopped doing it ages ago. As a matter of fact, most people that know of my collection joke about it and we all have a good laugh. So feel free to laugh at me all you want. I don’t really plan on stopping, but as long as I admit it, I’m not trying to fool anyone. Well, that’s what I’m telling myself anyway.
However, on a positive note, because of my nerd-ity, I have had people ask me for repertoire suggestions or help on papers or recitals. This is not even limited to vocalists, I have had a few pianists ask for ideas on pieces they could play…or if I suggest it to them, should play. As long as I am helping others, I figure it is ok, since our government sure isn’t going to educate people. cough. cough.
Thanks for listening and tune in next time.