According to the weigh-station at the recycling plant, almost 1.5 tons of clutter has been removed. That feels about right. My muscles are too sore to make any sudden motions, since I moved all of it by hand from home to truck to trash pile over the span of about 5 hours yesterday.
During the Great Purge I chanced upon my long-dead 2003, 3rd generation iPod. It was well-used and well-loved, easily my favorite pre-touchscreen iPod. It lasted almost ten years, but it died a long, slow death. It would fade, revive, fade, revive, until it finally passed on and no amount of reconnecting, or recharging, or cpr could bring it around. I left it out on a shelf and every few months I would give a whirl, but no go. Finally I relented and hid the body from view and tried to forget.
Earlier this week I pulled the iCorpse from a drawer, buried beneath some cords and several ball-point pens, and it appeared much as it had appeared when it was young and vital, but its dark screen looked to me like the sunken eyeballs of a mummy. On a whim – when nobody was looking – I plugged it in, tried to reset it, talked to it in the hopes that it could hear me and this was only a 5-year coma. But no. Nothing.
Before disconnecting and adding it to the box of dead electronics, I was distracted by my 3 year old daughter. She had found some old toys in a box I had pulled from the attic. We sat on the floor and marveled at fisher-price figures, plastic dinosaurs and matchbox cars for a short time.
And then I heard a familiar chirp. Wait! I know that sound! I looked over at the iPod. The screen was lit, the little red lights were on. I stood up, shoved my daughter aside and ran to the charger. I touched the "Play" button and the sound of an antiquated hard drive clicked popped and whirred and whined to life.
I have played all of the Jelly Roll Morton tunes and still it chugs along. Therein also resides the complete collection of “Frontier Gentleman” radio shows and an assortment of obscure music that I downloaded years and years ago from long-gone blogs that specialized in obscure music; songs and recordings that may not exist anywhere else.
How long will this last? Who can say? Removed from the charger the lights go out and the dark silence takes hold in less than a minute. I no longer have a computer with an antiquated version of iTunes that can communicate with this lost and lonely soul. It is the last of a species; near extinction like a lonesome songbird doomed to die alone.
I hope it lasts a long time and allows me to revisit lost joys.. and I hope it lasts so it will save me another trip to the electronics recycling center. It’s kind of far away and if the crummy iPod dies tomorrow I’ll feel like I blew the chance to get rid of this thing.
- Bay Area News Group!Illustrator, Graphics Guy, 2001 - present
- S.F. Academy of ArtIllustration, 1995
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