The center of my early life was my mother's school library. A lifelong teacher, she tended that collection of books as if it were another child. This might have led to a sibling rivalry. But, as the library grew, I soon realized that I was the principal beneficiary; all damaged or duplicate books became mine, and the walls of my room disappeared behind a covering of publishers' promotions.
As technology progressed, publishers no longer simply sent books, but audio tapes and vinyl records as well. Among the first to arrive was a recording of famous speeches. By today's standards of CD-ROMs and compact discs, these 33 rpm...