I think putting things in order is fun. There you go. I said it. I’ve had enough of listening to lazy people saying that it has to somehow be a compulsion or neurosis. It is the only way to find things efficiently and the basis of civilization. For what is civilization but organized living that takes advantage of people’s ability to cooperate. Lining up my paints from red to violet is fun as well as making it easy to find my naples yellow.

Everything doesn’t have to be in order just the things you need to find. As long as I’ve played video games I’ve never had them in any order. That is because I only play two or maybe three at a time. Normally just one. The newest one and when that’s done it gets thrown on the pile. With all the people playing video games out there I think there are relatively few video game collectors. Most of us are video game players.

If you have a collection of anything than you have to have some form of order. If you can’t find what is in your collection than you don’t have a collection you have an accumulation.

Putting things in order can be a relaxing time. The world is a messy chaotic place and being responsible for a small part of it making sense is an accomplishment. Categories, classifications, conditions, genre, there are lots of ways to line things up. I remember as a child when I realized that my comic books all had numbers on them and they could be put in order to make a bigger story than a single comic. From then on in it was fun to put comics in numerical order and watch them become a time machine as you thumb through them.

Years ago, back in the age of cassette tapes and CDs, I oddly stopped keeping my music collection in order. For years I had them lined up in cases in alphabetical order but that stopped working for me. When I would browse for something to listen to I knew where everything was without opening the case. That ruined the browsing experience. It was fine when I knew exactly what I wanted to hear but often I didn’t know what I wanted to listen to. So one day, back before the age of CDs even, I mixed up all of my cassette cases. I took everything out and put them all back in as randomly as I could. It made browsing my music more fun. In this age of digital music everything is ordered nearly automatically. But everyone loves shuffle play.

I’ll tell you what I don’t like to do. Put things back in order. I had a little computer hiccup today when my external hard drive started acting odd. Well, it started acting odd a couple of weeks ago but it was minor and there were some additional odd things with my main hard drive that I fixed. I thought that was the problem. It wasn’t the only one. Today I ran three hard drive utility programs and eventually got things back to normal but a bunch of files went missing. A bunch of MP3 files and a bunch of photos from my snapshot archive.

For some time now I’ve been scanning in all my negatives and digitizing all of my photo albums. Fifteen years worth of film. All of it was on my hard drive and some small amount of files were missing. I have backups of course but I had to go through all 30 DVDs worth of my backups to see what was missing and replace it. It took a while but now everything is back in order. It is no fun to have to do all that work just to get things back to the way things were. It is a good thing the photos were in order to begin with or the fix could have taken ten times as long.

Well, I gotta re-MP3 28 of my CDs now.

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