Un-Plugged

I dropped my iPhone the other day. It just fell from about waist height, and it has a case and screen protector. But the fates saw to it that it hit a protruding rock and shattered the screen. It worked, barely, but there was a lot of broken glass. 

Just moments ago, I took it to the Apple Store in Ginza to get it repaired. Don’t worry; this is not a post about good service (or bad). Instead it is about not having a phone for a ninety minutes while I had to wait. OhMyGawd!

I found myself saying, “Ah! I’ll just go to Starbucks and buy some coffee.” Which is fine, but have you ever spent 90 minutes at Starbucks, alone, with nothing to read, and no iPhone? It’s amazing how many times I thought to myself, “Ah, I’ll just watch a video on YouTube.” Nope, can’t do that. This was then followed by, “Well, I’ll just read that Stephen King short story collection.” Nope, no iPad or iPhone. Then I thought to myself, “Ah, I’ll just go buy a book at the bookstore.” Only there are no bookstores in Ginza anymore. Thanks Amazon… my employer, that I love.

Short tangent to explain how I mentally coped with this tragedy:

I’d heard a story about Yuri Gargarin. My memory of it is probably wrong, probably not even him. That’s not the point. It’s a story, and its how I spent my early evening. 

So the story I remember is that this cosmonaut is in space, and he knows he’s going to be there for months. And he starts to hear a clicking sound. It was subtle, and just at the edge of hearing, but that’s what makes it so insidious. He realizes that he either has to fall in love with this sound or he’s going to go insane like with water torture (is it really Chinese? I dunno). So he does, he falls in love with it. He embraces it. He loves this thing, this torture that could otherwise make him genuinely mad, and he survives.

So that’s what I did. 

I bought my cuppa, and sat outside on a short stone wall and chilled out, without YouTube, without iO9.com, without a bookstore. And, I chose to fall in love with it. It was kind of sweet. I sat there and watched the people go by, enjoyed the 75 degree weather, slowly drank my iced coffee, and just enjoyed time without a screen or podcast or page.

Then I went back to the Apple Store and sat in on a lecture about iPhoto. And I fell asleep for the remaining 60 minutes. 

Cause, how else are you going to kill an hour and a half without going crazy?

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