Nick Leitzke on Plenty






In this Murmur DC post, Nick Leitzke discusses the idea of “plenty” in America, and what it means for him as a music collector. Here is an excerpt:

“We take many things in life for granted. An endless supply of essentials seems to surround us. We will never deplete the resources that are necessary for our survival, and we can live our lives knowing that everything is in the black. My car is always on a full tank of gas. My bank account is always ready to accommodate my rent. Starbucks will never run out of freshly brewed coffee. These are a given. The very notion that any of these resources will run out is absurd, because we sit on an endless reserve of everything. This is America where plenty is an entitlement. Don’t ask me about emergency plans because people who speak American don’t have ’emergency’ in their vocabulary.

But the necessary things never last. I will eventually have to break down and fill my tank. I will have to check my online statement to make sure my balance is roughly where it was last month. There will be that one busy day where the line is out the door and I might have to wait four minutes for a fresh cup. Exhaustion of any or all three of these things will derail a good day. Lack of plenty – that is the one thing Americans refuse to accept. The day a lack of plenty hits America is the day the Earth stops spinning on its axis. (But isn’t there a recession going on? Shhh-shut up!)

Then there are the things I know I can’t live without. Recently I made a discovery that turned my world upside down. I am the kind of music collector who treats his collection like a collection. Any real comic book connoisseur will house his collection in plastic sleeves with proper cardboard backing to preserve the newsprint and the spine. The same is true of a music collector. Stick those records in plastic sleeves if you have a shred of decency inside you. Is that CD in a cardboard digipack rather than a plastic case? Get yourself some CD-size sleeves and protect that thing, you unruly savage. Preserving the collection ought to be priority one for the collector. Before that album goes on the shelf, make sure you have it taped shut and safe from the elements.

Crisis struck when I ran out of record sleeves. Every time I bought a new record I took another sleeve from the pack, well aware they would run out one day. I had no need to worry, though. This is America where nothing runs out. Records stack easily, as long as you stack them upright to maintain their integrity. The day arrived when I pulled the last sleeve from the pack, and I didn’t worry too much. Just stack them next to the player so they’re already in grabbing distance. The stack is growing larger? We’ll get more sleeves eventually. Don’t worry.

Denial is the real American virtue. The scope of the crisis didn’t fully hit me until two weeks ago when I made the most shocking discovery of all. My CD sleeves ran out. Not only did my CD sleeves run out, but I had multiple Amazon orders en route. This can’t be! My world is…I don’t even know. What am I going to do with all of my new children? It’s going to mean going online to the place I purchased all my sleeves to begin with, but what will I do in the meantime? Think man. Think.

If there is one thing that times like these call for it’s cleaning house. Take a good long look through that collection and find the pieces you haven’t touched since the day you bought them. Ask yourself if you really need them and then make that difficult but necessary decision. The choice is hard, but there are any number of sleeves in this collection that could be used for new acquisitions.”

Click here to read the complete post.

Image in the post is of various album covers, from Leitzke’s post.

Share this


Two Poems by Allen Ebert

Happy Birthday, Old Man! Every birthday I weigh less. I’m down to the last hole on my belt. There’s more hair in the clothes dryer, than...

Three Poems by Michael Gushue

Turning ElegyLeaving is all we have.It’s your not being here speaking.Leaving the door ajar, the tableswept—turning into something less than comfort. What did you...

Two Poems by Jim Smith

Eating the Sun At the Alburgh VT eclipse festival, children sit at a picnic table drawing the sun with black crayons. A dragonfly brushes my...

Recent articles

More like this


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here