I spent Sunday afternoon tidying the basement and came across an old trunk full of cassettes. In amongst the riches was a handful of mix tapes, historical documents of the music that mattered more than anything at a particular point in time, hand-selected by friends and played sufficiently incessantly to soundtrack a week, a month, a summer.
There are plenty of analogs for rich memories locked up in a dead physical format in plenty of basements - from photographic slides, to VHS cassettes and old mobile phones housing photos that will never grace a screen bigger than 3 inches.
The closest modern analog might be social networks, where a growing timeline buries the images, banter and connections that light up a point in time. I'll be spending next weekend with a ream of paper, a printer and my Facebook timeline.
Until then, here's a mix tape gem I probably haven't heard in 25 years.