We recently hosted a quasi-invited guest. (She sort of invited herself. It was a Thanksgiving kind of thing.) We took this person downtown for shopping, out to dinner and put her up for the night. But this guest wasn’t alone. She was possessed of an uninvited interloper. It was an iPhone.
Introducing the “bamboo” sound.
DA-DA DA-DA DINT DA! Thwap!
The sound was a lot like that coffee commercial jingle only a lot more woody, with a strong, robust finish. It was like Juan Valdez had chugged too much tequila and was getting jiggy on the marimbas.
DA-DA DA-DA DINT DA! Thwap!
That sound haunts me. It chases me in my dreams, where it is the size of the Death Star and I’m running but making no progress. “The rebel base will be in range in 15 minutes.” Only, in this dream, there was no Luke Skywalker to eject a torpedo pulse into a tiny little hole and save the day. The floating space-suited black helmet dudes fired that sucker and blew me and my planet up. And guess what? The sound the Death Star beam made? It was the iPhone bamboo.
So yeah, last night I dreamt of my own death. True story. My tombstone was even there. For some reason it was decidedly Back To The Future-esque. It read:
“HERE LIES TOM B. TAKER. DIED SEPTEMBER 7, 1885. Shot in the back by Buford Tannen over a matter of 80 dollars. Erected in eternal memory by his beloved Clara.”
I wish I could say I was making this up. Sadly the artistic license is not in play. I guess I haven’t met Clara in this timeline yet. This does not portend well.
iPhones With Benefits
Wanna hang out with me?
Sure. I’ll grab my iPhone.
The procedure is cleverly simple. Every five seconds, the iPhone will make the bamboo sound. Take the device out of your pocketses. Gaze lovingly into the screen, mano-a-mano, retina to retina. Wait exactly 1.42 seconds. Then, bust out with a hearty, overly loud laugh. Remember: You want people to hear. You want them to bask in your enjoyment.
This is your clue to the world. “Check this out, bitches. I’m in on something. And you’re not. This shit is awesome. Ha ha ha!”
Put the device back in the pocketses. Wait five seconds. Repeat.
Sure, allegedly you are spending time with someone you ostensibly give a shit about. A person who is choosing to take time from their existence and spend it with you. Punish them for that. Make them pay. Teach them that no good deed goes unpunished. Do not respond to things they say, sometimes known as “conversation.” In other words, iPhone them. (I’m the inventor of iPhone as a verb.)
If possible, find an audience and make love to the iPhone. Literally. Have sex with it. Right there, in public. After all, you own an iPhone. You’re already an exhibitionist. Lovingly caress it. Kiss it. Put it on/in/under your genitalia. Jump up, jump up and twerk around. This is not a time to be shy. Then rinse and repeat. Rinse is optional.
I don’t know about you, but after a lovemaking session with my device I have a ravenous appetite. So we did the polite thing and took her out to dinner.
Again, conversation was impossible. Every five seconds the thing would bamboo. We’d sit there on hold, as if the iPhone was a remote control and we had just been put on pause.
Then, the laughter. At least she was orgasmically delighted by what she was reading. Somehow that made it all worthwhile. It was raw, naked and primal. There was no subterfuge, no attempt at pretext. It was pure alpha dog on steroids. It was like she was saying, “I’m going to mount this thing right here, right now, and on this very table. It looks sturdy enough. Do not attempt to interfere. Siri will rip your throat out.”
Well played, millennial.
Once upon a time humans would gather to break bread and engage in primitive socialization customs. Some people choose to blame divorce or sexual orientation for the breakup of the traditional family unit. I blame the device. Try to get someone to sit through an entire meal without leaving in the middle and/or interacting with people not even there. I defy you.
We were just the schmucks picking up the tab. $85 for the four of us (three humans and one device) and the sum total of meaning from the experience was my wife and I sharing exasperation and our companion getting her rocks off.
As one who always seeks out the silver lining, I realized that this was actually a good thing. The effect was to minimize our interactions with her. And that’s a win win. I guess I owe the iPhone my gratitude. That’s a debt I’ll never be able to repay.