This week was a bit wild and wooly, so my “Monday” post is happening on Thursday at the Oakland airport. But as squeezed as I am for time, I am enough of an iPad junky that when I realized I had left my iPad at home–for a one-day trip to a SCELC board meeting in Riverside–I said to myself, no problem; I’ll swing by my house on the way to SFO.
Then I doublechecked my reservation and realized I was flying out of Oakland…
And I drove back to SF, grabbed my iPad (and with a little wiggle room sealed the deal on my SuperShuttle res from ONT to the hotel and printed a boarding pass… if only to dignify the trip, as if I couldn’t have done that at work), drove back to Oakland, and am now writing this post on said iPad. (Using a Verbatim folding keyboard which has a white case almost identical to a purse I owned in the first grade.)
The guy next to me watched me pull out my iPad, keyboard, and iPhone and said, “That’s a lot of electronics.” “Mmmm-hmmm!” I responded.
But while it is a “lot of electronics,” all of it fits easily in my purse, which also has print copies of The Atlantic and Harper’s for those agonizing minutes during takeoff and landing when I must reenter the analog lifestyle. And beyond its portability, the iPad is its own well-designed perfect universe, as immaculately tempting as a Martha Stewart kitchen.
I’m mindful of the recent press about Apple’s labor practices. The best coverage–which I haven’t seen referenced in the shocked-and-indignant Big Media articles that followed–was the audio essay on This American Life, “Mr. Daisy and the Apple Factory.” I listened to it twice, mesmerized and disturbed. I cannot reconcile these perfect, addictive devices with the inhumane practices that produce them. I cannot reconcile my own complacency with the urgency of that story. I don’t know exactly how to proceed. I do know that I can’t turn away.