Thursday, October 13, 2011


My relationship with Steve Jobs started like most good relationships: introduced by a pretty girl. I had an mp3 played (called an Iriver-no affiliation to ipod) which was more or less an AA battery holder and a headphone jack. Long strands of grass stood no chance between me, my mower and my music. However one time I went driving with a gal who had an ipod. This was the size of a large cell phone, black and white text, but contained countless songs. I was fascinated. I then went home and went in on one with my father for our road trips (no more mixing tapes or trying to burn CDs from .wav files for us!) I think we might still have that ipod wired into his car.
One of the collections my father has is CDs. He has multiple shelves, full of floor to ceiling CDs with almost every artist and genre one could think of. (This created interesting conversations when we saw what it took to make a CD as he has, and I was all for Napstering/Kazaa/Limewire-stealing of music) When we bought the Ipod, we had to set up our itunes account. Which meant while working on homework on one computer, I was uploading every CD he had (insert, rip, eject. Rinse, repeat. ) over and over and over. Nowadays, Jobs has created jobs for companies who will do that process for you. My father had a high school kid with a lack of desire to complete math homework.
I got a little older, and met an even prettier gal. This meant long trips driving, and I had a need to set the mood from time to time. Thank you Steve Jobs for enabling to do so, with my own ipod (which just died this weekend-more on that later)
We spent so much time listening to music that for one of the obligatory gift giving holidays I saw it fit to get her an ipod (she did not have one) engraved with her name on it. My line of thinking was that every time she listened to music I would cross her mind. We don’t talk much anymore, but the ipod still works. I remember the gift being a huge deal, and feeling great pride for having worked the extra hours to enhance someone’s joy of music.
On every big race I have ever run, I have had my trusty ipod helping me keep smiling and keeping time. I always felt excellent when Living on a Prayer” was timed just right in my playlist to hit at the “halfway there” mark. I also am notorious for singing that song in (hopefully) the middle. It also made me smile during the doldrums (the 60 to 87% of the race.) I remember distinctly listening to the Army Strong song as I finished Des Moines Marathon last year, shortly before passing out.
I had a real sweet place list for chicagos marathon last Sunday. At least I thought I did. I got through a few miles only to figure out that my playlist had not uploaded correctly. No biggie though, I was still using my DSM one. Then just after the halfway point (bonjovi has passed me, as I was much slower) silence. Fittingly matching the creator, my ipod just stopped working. I tried to fix it (no small feat while running a marathon, trying not to run anyone over) much like the doctors probably did. Then I said forget about and proceeded to look for the two people I knew in the race (to no luck.) I sang songs in my head, lots ot songs, I took in the sights, and smiled at the cheer squads. I ran free and true, just as I imagine Steve Jobs is doing now in Apple Heaven.

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