Lately, we've been going through our books and other similar items that tend to collect and then not get used for a long time (if ever). The books are easy, we're packing them up in 12x12x16 moving boxes and delivering them to the local YMCA for the St. Louis YMCA book fair. This annual event PACKS an ice rink and the stands with books, records, etc. every single year. It's an amazing event.
In my home office, every couple of years I go through my collection of cassette tapes. Nearly 100% of these were made while I was in college in the last half of the 80's. At that point, CDs where barely coming out and vinyl was still king - though its days were clearly numbered. The best portable way to take music around was cassette tapes. Additionally, there was some concern about wearing out older records, when the newer ones were not made with the same quality of vinyl. It was common practice to duplicate your vinyl on tape, and listen to the tape.
I bought a very nice cassette deck and did copy many of my most frequently used albums. I'll have to admit that there was also a bit of album "swapping" that went on in those days, too. I probably had 100 or more TDK SA90 tapes full of my favorites.
Well, CDs eventually took over, but I still resisted playing my vinyl where possible and until recently did not duplicate any album we had on vinyl or tape on CD. Initially, I purchased the CDs of albums that we had on tape, but no real physical copy, so we'd be legal. Then slowly, I duplicated some of my favorites on CD - even though we had the album.
Over the years, my tape collection has dwindled. I could probably condense what is left into just two, three-drawer cassette cases. I'm guessing 3 or 4 years from now (if not sooner) the last of them will be gone.
I took such care in recording these, too. Each one had the levels carefully set so I'd get the maximum use of the tape headroom and yet not have any clipping. I'd also label the tapes and cases as neatly as my slopping printing would allow. I spent some serious time working on these!
This week, I threw out another stack of them. As is my habit, lately, I decided to take a picture or two of the stack and put them in a "memorabilia file" on the computer.
I feel a little pang every time I get rid of a bunch of these. When they are all gone, I'll miss them!