Gruber decided to send us to Penguin's blog yesterday to take another gander at these absolutely delightful and sexy James Bond hardcover book covers. Seeing this art and the archived post from the good people of Penguin reminded me of a thought that's been rumbling around in my head for some time:
Wither the bookcase?
The compact disc has already almost fully migrated to the MP3 and is heading; thanks to Rdio, Spotify and the like; towards "the cloud." And that'll be great when it's really real. All the music in world at your fingertips wherever, whenever. Death to the 30 second sample and all that. But it has ruined one lovely artifact of the days of music as physical object: The Record Collection as well as the accompanying Display of The Record Collection and the subsequent Discussion of the Record Collection with visitors... And now the same thing is happening to our collective bookshelf. The books are all leaving, so much Kindling.
I know I can see my friends mucial tastes in Rdio or Facebook and literary tastes at Library Thing. But what the hell are we supposed to do with all these empty shelves? The photos already left for the web. The music's gone. Ikea is getting ahead of the game by redesigning its bookcases for knick-knacks. Fortunately for us, I suppose, etsy has no shortage of birds to display upon our now vacant shelves.
We used to use the bookshelf to both decorate and display our tastes (and therefore ourselves) in our homes. Those days are numbered. Now we fill them with completely non functional, expressive tschotskes.
Maybe Amazon can just ship me some hardcover spines? I'll tape them to the wall.