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Collecting and Completion, a Collecting the SDJs special

Those of you who have been following this blog closely will know that just to bedevil myself I’ve chosen to collect and review all the Spiel Des Jahres. You might also know that I arbitrarily decided that I’d do it without paying full price myself for any of them. As such, with bring and buys at conventions and charity shops being out for what feels like forever now, I’m down to Birthdays and Christmas for ticking that list off. It recently rolled around to the inevitable birthing day celebration, so its also a time for a round up of the quest, but before that this time I thought I’d voice a few thoughts it bought up in me about the nature of collecting and being a completionist.

Now, I’m a collector, I always have been, and having found my people in the hobby world it really doesn’t make me stand out. But I am a little odd in that I’m not really a completionist. I like hunting things out and the feeling that since they slot into a series it makes a certain sense to them, but I have no issue with walking away from them when they stop being interesting or fun. For example, I’m typing this looking at a shelf of my DVD collection, and on it are (among others) series 5-7 of the Big Bang Theory. We (my wife and I) used to have series 1-4 at one point, but donated them to charity because we didn’t like them as much. Now, to put this into context, I played through the entire Warhammer End Times books, long after they stopped being fun, and I have a boardgame collection well into three figures. But for me, collection is about giving a shape to your curiosity while completionism is about giving it neuroses. I say that with all the love in the world, I understand the itch that can exist when you’ve nearly got the complete set and the drive to pick up the new volume, because you had the complete set until they bought out the new one. I think it got burnt out of me as a small person thanks to only ever wanting sticker albums that no other kids were interested in.

Why bring this up?