The Man Who Mistook an Apple
for His Personal Gift to the World
Steve Jobs was so immense that his wake will be forever littered with happenstance and irony, and glittered with flashes of the genius he was generous enough to share during his life.
To begin with, his sense of timing was impeccable. After all, the biological son of a Syrian died in the year that will be known for its Arab Spring, an event widely documented by gadgets he devised.
In fact, much of Jobs’s legacy will last for generations solely on the underground footage that registered mass movements for freedom around the world, and probably helped to change it too.
Even the current mushrooming protest against Wall Street’s greed and lack of accountability has greatly benefited from the cheap technology he forcefully ushered and fought to make readily available.
Another pseudo-coincidence is that among the major themes dear to that same movement born in the streets of lower Manhattan is the fight for jobs, a word he carried with special meaning in his own given surname.
But it was his preternatural vision what set him apart from other sons and daughters of Silicon Valley. More than once he lost the fistfight within his own company and more than once he came back to redefine it yet again.
He had that rare combination of the supreme nerd, capable of speaking the cypher language of “PC guys” everywhere, and the ability to articulate a dream the way only a poet could.
His obsession with portability and with packing ever more capabilities into the shrinking spaces within the devices he created will be the stuff people will talk about in the (virtual) universities of the future. Or imaginary ones, like the one he frequented.
But only someone who was crazy enough to take very seriously his own dreams would insist in adopting the grace of the touchscreen as a norm, the lightness of the thin phone as a basic premise, and the option of having a musical instrument in your pocket, just in case.
The world lost someone who lend a whimsical dimension, a playful component, an open-ended edge to everything he touched.
And who managed, without ever betraying a hint of competitiveness, to stay ahead of everybody else in the process.
It’s no wonder that Jobs chose for his own company, the logo that had graced the 1960s band who best encapsulated the ideals of a whole generation.
It was through him that The Beatles, arguably the greatest musical group of our time, finally hit the digital age.
Also, Jobs departs as a documentary on a fellow Pisces, Beatle George Harrison, by Martin Scorcese has its world premiere.
Ever the best showman for his own creations, despite having recently retired, one can’t help thinking again about his sense of timing.
His passing was also a boost the latest iPhone needed to hit the ground running. Take that those who only yesterday were writing it all but off.
The tributes, eulogies, remembrances and a lot of hot air has already started filling the cyber world he helped to define, so this may be just a very tangential and suburban homage to Steve Jobs.
But it is as heartfelt as many you’ll read about today and ever.
And if he’s able to get a goddamned good reception wherever he is now, we’re sure he’ll be placing a call shortly with some crucial improvements to whatever his company is working on at the moment.
So long, Steve, and thanks for all your love labors that will never be lost.