i think the feeling that i have towards cassette tapes is reminiscent of the feeling those in generations prior to my own have toward vinyl. there's a certain romantic quality to a cassette tape.
in my mind, an album is (or can be) as much a piece of work as the tracks themselves. a song can be made or broken by the songs surrounding it, and it's no small credit to cassette tapes for making me feel this way. because it was quite a pain (though possible) to fast forward through tracks and hit the next one at its beginning, i never bothered. as a result, there were several songs that i wouldn't have enjoyed that become favorites.
today, i favor a mix cd over a tape. for one, my car doesn't have a tape player. for two, i can make a mix cd in about fifteen minutes, as opposed to the hour or two that mix tapes take. here's the rub. when i make a cd of new music for listening, i find myself skipping tracks. tracks that i apparently thought good enough to put on the cd in the first place, but in the moment impatience all too often wins and a morrissey track gets skipped because i'm never giving it a chance to soak in. therein lies the tragedy. with the convenient ability to freely roam the field of any given cd comes the loss of the obligation to listen to it all. and really, i miss that obligation.