I Bought a Time Machine

It only took about ten years of the love of my life putting “inexpensive turntable” on her Christmas list for me to finally pull the trigger. Now she’s happy that this bad boy anchors the family room and nostalgia reigns. The Best of Bread. Michael Jackson. The St. Louis Jesuits. Dan Fogelberg. The Beatles. The Elements (also known as Earth, Wind, and Fire). And of course The Pipes and Drums and Military Band of the Royal Scots Dragoon* Guards (not to be confused with dragon guards). “Eclectic” doesn’t do the collection justice.

Having to listen to entire records has been jarring and illuminating. Our turntable is a time machine. Our time machine has forced me to acknowledge that modern tech has made me more impatient than normal. I fast forward through my digital playlists all the time. All it takes to skip to the next track in my new car is a quarter inch movement of my left thumb. I often record sports events to fast forward through commercials, but often find myself watching them at slightly faster speeds. At home I sometimes speed up television shows and movies too. I constantly switch back and forth between radio programs while making dinner.

Digitized content has played havoc on my attention. It’s difficult to put toothpaste back in the tube, but maybe I’ll learn to be more patient while perfecting my Michael Jackson dance moves. In which case the turntable will prove an invaluable investment.