I have before me a xeroxed copy of Mark Norris Lance's dissertation. I obtained this copy when Mark Norris Lance was applying to be chair of the department at Texas Tech University, where I then worked.
I did not read it then. I do not need to read it now. If I ever needed to read it, The University of Pittsburgh has a copy.
I do not need to keep this document. There is no reason why I have put it in a file box and carried it with me for two cross country moves. I can throw it away. It is ok for me to throw it away. Nothing will go wrong if I throw it away. The writing will not cease to exist if I throw away this xerox.
This is the sort of discussion I have to have with myself every time I open up my file boxes and try to throw things out. Earlier today I found a print out of Bacon's New Atlantis. It was a printout of an etexttranscribed by Kirk Crady. I needed to go to the internet, and verify that this etext was still online before I felt comfortable throwing away my printout. I think somewhere in my heart I believed that if I threw away this printout of the New Atlantis, the New Atlantis would cease to exist.
It is very hard for me to throw things away.