Archive for January 2007

Life and Death of an iPod

January 15, 2007

SPOILER WARNING:

Much like the classic American play/novel by Arthur Miller, this story is one in which the American Dream (or its facsimilie) is literally run over and smashed despite the main character’s good intentions.

Please also note that some of the images contained herein are of a graphic nature. Do not continue unless you have a strong constitution.

 

Our story opens in the Spring of 2006… Provenance had recently smiled upon me in the form of winning a brand new 30 gb Video iPod from KROQ 106.7 FM in Los Angeles, CA. I called in to the morning show during the “What is Your Deal” segment of the program. I was totally surprised to have 1) gotten through on the phone line, 2) gotten past the screener (the fact that the screener was a UCLA student and I am a UCLA alumnus perhaps had something to do with it, truth be told) and 3) gotten on the air.

I know it sounds cliche, but I truly had never won anything from a radio contest/call-in segment. I did win a new, leather basketball at an awards banquet as a freshman in high school. In comparison to a brand-spankin’ new 30 gb Video iPod the basketball was/is “mice nuts”, however.

Notwithstanding my previous history of prize-winning (not-winning?) I was understandably grateful and stoked at the prospect of having a full-fledged iPod to enjoy and tinker with. Up to that point (April 2006) I had only purchased an iPod Shuffle which my older son had pretty much run off with. 30gb is a lot of storage space and I was looking forward to downloading some podcasts as well.

So, I picked up my iPod from KROQ’s studios in Culver City, CA. Visiting the studios was an adventure in itself (maybe that will be another blog at a later date?), but when all was said and done, I had the iPod and a new iTunes gift card to boot. Very cool to get free music along with the iPod. Thanks KROQ and thank you Apple.

Flash forward to December 2006… I was heading out with my two sons to the UCLA Football game and decided to bring my iPod with me. By this time, my iPod had become a regular accessory in my travles – comfortably co-existing with my Palm Treo. Since we were driving to the Rose Bowl with the convertible top down, my younger son wanted to climb through the window to the back seat of my Jeep Wrangler. He needed a little help, so I put down my iPod on the bumper of my Jeep.

Bad move, sucker.

You probably guessed it, after giving my son a boost into the backseat of the Jeep, I FORGOT MY IPOD ON THE BUMPER! AGGGGGHHHH!!!!

Of course, I blithely drove off to Pasadena for the UCLA Football game and didn’t realize my tragic mistake until after parking my Jeep in the Rose Bowl parking lot.

How did I realize my mistake? I found my mangled iPod earphones wedged into my rear bumper (with nothing else attached!) when I got out of the Jeep.

Despite the tragic boneheaded-ness on my part, I still hoped that perhaps the iPod would be safe when I returned home. I allowed my emotions to imagine the joy of finding my iPod in the driveway, or even on the corner safely protected from major damage by its travel case and perhaps some lucky bounces.

I think it was the high expectations that made my return home that much more savagely crushing. As I turned onto my street, I did find my iPod, but in the gutter. My heart sank. My carelessness had ended with the death of my beloved iPod. 

I think perhaps the most astonishing thing about the end of my iPod was the grotesque disfiguration of the iPod itself (see attached images). I can’t quite figure out how the iPod fell from my bumper and ended up in folded at a 90 degree angle. Perhaps the headphones held the iPod in place just under the wheel long enough for my rear wheels to inflict the deadly “roll-over”. Or perhaps the iPod fell, was safe for a time in the street, but was then destroyed by another car turning up my street.

Either way, I’m to blame for this sad ending to a truly marvelous consumer device.

Crushed iPod Photo #1       Crushed iPod Photo #2       photo_120106_005.jpg

 

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