Wednesday, May 31, 2006

My iPod is the luckiest iPod in the entire world!

Imagine, if you will, four iPods sitting on a shelf. The first is snatched up by one of those “gadget guys”, who rushes it straight to his curiously-impeccable bachelor den. There, he begins to download his entire music collection into it. Unfortunately for this iPod, this fellow’s entire music collection consists solely of Steely Dan. Every Steely Dan album ever officially released, of course, along with dozens of Steely Dan bootlegs and unreleased tracks. As gigabyte after gigabyte pours into the hapless little machine, it thinks back to its idyllic life in the Apple Store, when it had dreams of being filled with approximately 7500 of the finest songs ever recorded. It wishes it could be back on its cozy shelf, but no, this is not to be. It instead will spend the rest of its life vomiting up hour after hour of Steely Dan into this strange man’s strangely protruding ears.

An iPod’s life can be a cruel, thankless one. Just ask the second device sitting on that shelf, the one who was bought by a man as a present for his teenage daughter. He’s guilty over his bitter divorce, you see, and he wants to do something painlessly nice for her. So, on one of his rare visitation days, he gives it to her and they spend the rest of the day not talking to each other. Later, she will jam it chock-full of Evanescence, Dashboard Confessional and classic Nine Inch Nails. A week later, she will spill a big glob of black nail polish on it. Six days following this incident, she will throw it at her mother in the midst of a heated argument over the use of a very old Chevy Caprice. All this, however, is merely prelude to her trading it to the neighborhood burnout in exchange for a bag of pot (a bag of pot that, by the way, will be mostly seeds). This dealer will leave the long-suffering iPod wedged between the cushions of his overstuffed couch for nearly a year.

Faced with a fate like that one, the third iPod was downright lucky. Purchased by an accounts-payable associate at a nearby plumbing supply concern, it will self-combust in protest at having to download every single dreadful “American Idol” group number available on iTunes. She will come home from a hard day at work to find a small pile of smouldering microchips beneath a tiny computer screen that reads “Get some fucking taste, why don’t you?” in a gradually diminishing typeface.

The fourth iPod, however, gets off easy. Bought my several of this humble blogger’s dearest friends and then given to him at a local Mexican restaurant, I vowed to give this tiny machine a good life. With me, it would only have to deal with the world’s best music. I would lavish upon it the works of John Coltrane, Serge Gainsbourg, Ella Fitzgerald, the Clash, Sarah Vaughan and so on and so forth. I would treat it kindly, too. I would never drop it into the toilet or leave it sitting on top of a magnet. This iPod would be pampered. It would be coddled, cherished and adored.

Still, deep down, I sort of worry that my iPod might be thinking, Goddamn it, I wish this asshole would hurry up and download me some sweet, sweet Steely Dan...

Thanks again, guys!