The Forgotten Past


swipe. swipe. tap. and the music plays.

Like many i-gadget owners, I have grown so accustomed to music playing in this way that the traditional modes have long been consigned to the dusty recesses of my mind sealed with the label ‘the good old days’.

But recently, a piece of forgotten memory got revived, as I walked through the underpass to Esplanade lined with art pieces assembled from old cassette tapes.

While scrutinising the “art pieces” hoping to find any cassette tapes that I once owned, I overheard a father asking his son: “Do you know what these are?”

Suddenly I was struck by a thought: children born in this century will not know what cassette tapes are. They will never experience the elation of waiting by the radio for your favourite song, and pressing the record and play buttons simultaneously when it comes on.

Anyway, the exhibits took me back in time where cassette tapes formed a substantial part of my growing up years. And I felt compelled to do a post to document my most vivid memories of cassette tapes:

1. A cassette tape has two sides (Side A and Side B). To play songs on the other side, you need to literally flip it over.

2. The lyrics to all the songs in the album are printed on a piece of paper which is folded and tucked into the cover.

3. To play a song on repeat mode, you will need to rewind it each time the song finishes. Otherwise, you can record the song over and over again on a blank tape.

4. A faulty player can sometime cause your tape to uncoil into a heap of tangled mass. To salvage it, you need to put a pencil through the opening and patiently wind it back.

5. A cassette tape that has not been played for a long time will turn mouldy.
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