To Kill An iPhone 5
Saturday night I lost my iPhone 5. For the past four days I haven’t had a phone in my hands. I could rewrite that sentence so it reads “For the past four days, I have felt incomplete” and it would all be the same. Who would have guessed that this would be the formula for feeling like you’ve dawned the theatrical mask of tragedy. There’s a great temptation to paint my face white, put on some striped clothes and a beret, and parade through crowds as a lost, out of work mime.
Now would be the perfect time to finally fulfill a role in an anti-depressant pharmaceutical commercial.
I’ve had a cell phone with me since I was eighteen years old (over a decade) and this is the longest stretch of time I’ve ever gone without any sort of portable communication device. Begin the dialog about becoming too technologically dependent if you want, but I’ve always acknowledged that amidst an apocalypse, I’ll be the first to go. As exotic as it’s perceived, I won’t even pretend that I’d enjoy living off of the land. Maybe if there was an even playing field I wouldn’t mind – meaning nobody had devices – but I can’t stand thinking that I’m missing out on something, even if there’s never anything to miss out on.
The great thing about idevices is that not only you can track them from the cloud, you can remotely lock them, include a number for an honest person to call, and/or erase all of the data off the device. The bad thing about idevices is that they have to be on in order to do that. Of course, my phone either died (which is semi-plausible, although unlikely) or some dishonest jerk turned it off and is patiently waiting until I report it lost/blacklist it to turn it on. I’ve spent the past four days hoping for the former, but my optimism has turned out to be fools gold. That leads me to where I am today.
There’s a scene in Million Dollar Baby where Frankie makes the most gut-wrenching, difficult decision of his life – to give in to Maggie’s request to usher her into an eternal sleep. He realizes that his hopeful optimism is unmatched by the reality of his guilt and that the only other measure to reconcile the two is to admit the inevitable.
I’m going to disconnect your air machine, and then you’re going to go to sleep. Then I’m going to give you a shot, and you’ll stay asleep. Mo Chuisle means my darling, my blood.
Cue Morgan Freeman.
Today I think I’ve finally arrived at the final stage of denial — acceptance. I’m finally giving in. And to be quite honest, I’m pretty sad about it. I’m not sad because it’s an iPhone 5 (I mean, I kind of am), I’m sad because it has all of my pictures, videos, personalizations, etc. on it. Thankfully, iCloud has backed all of those things up, but there’s something extremely vulnerable about knowing a stranger can search through memories that are really important to you.
I’ve waited this long to report my phone missing because once it’s reported lost, the network it’s tied to goes away. Once that happens, no data can be wiped off of it until it’s manually connected to someone’s wifi. Anyone could go through it at will until then. I lose.
Regardless, I’ve spent the morning preparing myself for the inevitable. And as difficult as it’s going to be to say goodbye, it’s time to kill my phone.
[Beep....Beep....Beep...] Or at least, think about doing it for a little longer.