A (Way)Back Issue

The latest purge in my effort to pare down my belongings is my stack of magazines.? Make that stacks!? With an exclamation point, like the names of Broadway musicals such as like ?Oklahoma!? or ?Hello Dolly!? or ?Oliver!?.? I’m never going to read an article in a magazine that is four years old.? And catalogs!? I’m certainly not going to order a blanket or helmet from a catalog that has lived in my house longer than my cat.? And, I’m having trouble finding paper bags to stuff the magazines and catalogs for the recyclers ? but that problem will be solved when I’m ready to give up my collection of paper bags stashed in the gift wrap closet, which would mean sorting out the collection of gift wrap . . . you get the picture.? The thought is ominous, and in my mind the theme song from ?Jaws? emanates from the gift-wrap closet any time I pass nearby, but that day is coming.? Soon!

All of which made me consider my collection of back issues from the ?Horse Journal.?? I have them all, dating from the first issue in February 1994.? I’ve keep them in binders since the beginning, at first because I used them for reference and then because it gave me a sense of satisfaction to have the entire set.? But, really, I don’t need anything for reference now that predates the turn of the millennium, and I really don’t need more old magazines.? The solution is that the new owners of ?Horse Journal,? Active Interest Media, which purchased us last year, would like the back issues, so they’re being shipped off to Colorado.

First, however, a monochromatic trip down memory lane for me: We didn’t start using spot color and then full color until 2008. Back in 2004, to acknowledge our first full decade of publishing, we did a summary of products that had always been consistent performers in our product surveys since the early ?90s and also noted trends.? It seems strange that it wasn?t all that long ago when we first heard the word ?nutraceutical,? much less learned how to spell it. We first heard about West Nile in 1999.? We didn’t ride in half chaps much in the mid-?90s, and we didn’t have zippers in our boots.? We didn’t use fly sheets for turnout.? We didn’t know horses got ulcers. We didn’t know anything about the internet!!

The internet has pretty much changed the way we do everything, which also means another reference stalwart, our 20-volume ?Encyclopedia Britannica,? is going to have to find a new home.? But, I’m keeping my ?Oxford English Dictionary,? even if it does require a magnifying glass to read the type.

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