: a file containing detailed records on a particular person or subject
Around the time i was about 23 or 24, I decided that it would be a good idea for me to get all of my writing about Brian organized. It must have been around the tenth anniversary of his death, which fell on April 16th, 2004. As of then, my notes and stories sat in various notebooks, folders, journals, on random scraps of paper shoved into binders, in old diaries, on the backs of receipts and paper menus or the blank side of a flyer or whatever I could get my hands on to scribble something down.
I sorted through all of this, put it in a bag and brought it to the publishing office where I worked the first couple years I attended Rhode Island College. Nobody cared what I did in that office. I got paid $8.50 an hour to do my homework and listen to internet radio. On occasion I designed the cover of a campus brochure or a newspaper ad for whatever famous pianist happened to be reciting at the campus theatre that weekend. And I used all of their printing resources without a moment of remorse.
I brought the bag into the copy room and copied every single page of everything I had written about Brian up to that point. I then triple punched the pages and inserted them into a three-ring-binder. I took the binder to my desk and began to go through the pages, highlighting passages on the subject (if they appeared in writing that was not exclusively about Brian) and particularly revealing or insightful excerpts. This is what Rhode Island College paid me to do.
I then went back to the copy room and stole a pack of index cards. I proceeded to catalogue all the major events that occurred during the time in which I knew Brian, writing each event on an index card, organizing them chronologically and finally placing them neatly into a little file box labeled—
the brian archives.
All in a day's work.
This was some conscientious fore-thinking on my part. I knew it would be beneficial to have it all organized into a DOSSIER of sorts, mostly for my own reference. And now look, I will be writing my thesis on the subject matter, including the act of organizing everything into a binder, and it's all right there for me, chronological, highlighted, and ready to be analyzed.
I'd like to thank Rhode Island College for supplying me with the means and funding for Project Brian DOSSIER, 2004.