By Nancy Aronie
I swore I’d never become one of them. I used to look at a table full of young people (omg did I just say young people). Just like promising myself I'd never bring a chair to the beach; chairs were for old people I also made a deal I would never say “young people,” so that’s two promises broken. Oh, how I love my folding chair!!!! And oh, how I love my iPhone 6 or is it 5 or 4?
Now I’m wondering if at the pearly gates they give a flying f***about these kinds of promises unkept.
I’m still a really nice person. I care deeply about my fellow beings and their hearts (that means you) . I write 18 dollar checks to all my causes (eighteen being the Hebrew letter CHAI meaning life) and I have begun to really pay attention to my cat. So I think I should get special dispensation for my iPhone addiction which crept up (ooh I was going to say slowly) but the fact of the matter is it didn’t creep at all . It ambushed. It tidal waved. It volcanoed. The way I fell madly in love with James Dean I fell madly in love with the slick, thin, sensuous piece of art that not only could fit in my pocket and connect me to all my phone buddies but could take photos that were all winners and videos I could send to my sister and and, and apps. Don’t start with me with apps. . So I fell hook line and sinker for the electronic version of Marlon Brando.
And the relationship is holding. But Ive begun to notice when I get into my comfy reading position on the couch and take up my book, grab my glasses, fix my pillow, I first reach for my iPhone for a little look-see. Which invariably leads me to a bit of Facebook attention which leads me to my Instagram page and then of course I have to respond which as we all know takes a bit of time and when I finally put down the sexy distraction I find that I’ve worked up such an appetite I have to extricate myself from my coziness and travel to the kitchen to make my signatureleaf cabbage and pomegranate salad (lemonjuice roasted sunflower seeds, apple cider vinegar, and honey) . When the bing sounds I’m not risking burning anything (nothings on the stove) so I can just put down my hammer (google Martha Stewart on how to get the sweet red things out of bondage . I know, I know ,I had to get over her insider trading thing myself but she does help with marinating and hints on how to massage your kalefor a second and leave the pounding of the pomegranate seeds )…now I check just in case the text is from….someone anyone it doesn’t matter anymore.
My husband never knows where his iPhone is and when he does discover it its surprise, surprise not charged. Of course this is the energy czar marriage i got myself into and he wont hesitate to tell you that the energy one iPhone, infrastructure -wise, is equivalent to running one huge refrigerator. Just in case I wanted to have facts about my abuse of the planet while I'm arranging the background for my selfie.
So what happens when the bing sounds? I jump. I read. I answer and the salad waits. The book waits and as we all know time doesn’t wait.
As in everything I do in life, I’m looking for balance. I still swim. I still talk on the real phone. I still go to Bloomingdale’s loyal customers just to see if those knives are on sale.
And I don’t consider it cheating on my iPhone. She knows I have other interests.
But still she seduces.
By Sophia Kolak
It’s become a modern sort of addiction, really. A buzz or a click summoning us to another dimension, where people exist merely as white or green bubbles. Rose gold, metallic, often shattered. The six, the five, the four; they come in all shapes and sizes. Who could’ve known these slippery little boxes would shape a generation. Although, iPhones are a lot more expensive than Kerouac novels, the price is largely insignificant anyway. We’ve paid for our devices more with humanity than credit. In making apple rich, we’ve forgotten the most basic orchards of human interaction. As though experiences won’t be real unless they’re photographed, blogged about. The droning process I know all too well, of repositioning for lighting, and then for height, and then again for lighting because “the first one didn’t come out good.” And in performing for this unseen judge our lives only ever exist as shadows of who we really are. Picking the parts of ourselves we wish to display and masking the wounds that desperately need to breathe. It’s all a big whirlpool of media, sucking and sucking at our souls. The wasted energy is nauseating. If I could capture that energy it would power the big cities for years. All wasted, all gone too quickly. We let it escape us before we were even old enough to realize what we abdicated. This is what I didn’t say, then. When I got my first iPhone, when I felt that first dopamine rush as I slid and clicked. An illusion of connection that was disconnection at its finest. I didn’t tell you to go away. I didn’t say that I want my own mind and I don’t want to be like the rest of them. Another hopeless statistic, brainwashed, mind in the palm of silicon valley. But here I am, newly purchased iPhone, already cracked. Its screen like porcelain eyes that peer up and down but never to the horizon. And into those iPhone cracks, a whole generation has fallen. And I am one of them, whether I disband my iPhone tomorrow or not, it's inescapable. But being on the fringe all those years ago. Having the choice, and the power, I wish I could’ve told myself to walk away.