You wouldn’t necessarily link the iPhone with existentialism, but, there you are.
The philosophy connected with our sense of purpose, place and meaning, so beloved of Sartre and Camus has led to our place in the modern world; staring at a pixelated display, where the manufacturers do their best to shrink technology to such an extent that it almost looks real.
Real, but not.
There is a magic associated with newness – the sense of anticipation, of novelty, unimagined or unexpected, is what fuels the Apple engine. Hapless millions tune-in, hoping for a sneak-preview; something that stretches the concept of what is possible.
It began ten years ago.
And we anticipate; we count-down the days, hours, minutes until… our birthday, Christmas or whatever. We measure the moments, revelling in the anticipation of what the novel might mean to our lives.
New car, phone, kitchen, holiday; it doesn’t matter. All possess a sheen that is unique, particular to the unpossessed.
And suddenly it is in our hands; we have the tech, gadget or item of kitsch.
We hold it, no longer a dream. We measure its dimensions. Check ourselves. Is it, can it, is? We look back, offer ourselves reassuring glances. Yes, it is…
Day one turns into two, then the first week and before we know it we are caught-up in something else; either looking forward to something else or distracted by the demands of our family or work.
All competing for our attention.
What was once new, shiny, is now tarnished, chipped, broken.
We become accustomed to a new new and we get on with it.
We accept that this is it and what was once our prize is now our thing, as much a part of us as the hole in our sock.
We grow old, age, deteriorate, as all things must, as everything new becomes past.
And, perhaps the ideal is to consider that new is not new, but just different; and difference can be perceived wherever we go, no matter the place.