Apple Kool-Aid is the Best Kool-Aid

This is not a dream recounted. The Apple Store is real.

After many years of stubbornly hanging onto my identity as a PC-person, I finally relent and buy a damned MacBook Air. PC people have a tendency to take an absurd defensive stance whenever the Apple folks roll out a new product. We say: Fuck you, Apple. I don’t want an iThing. We puff our chests out, proudly. Then, eventually we buy the iThing, even though a part of us dies with each iPurchase. Because, let’s face it: Apple is good at making stuff.

apple11My plan is to order the MacBook online and then pick it up at the local Apple Store. The transaction would be thus: Walk into store, locate desk marked “Pickup”, provide ID, get box, take box home. I call it Plan Q. I do not want to converse with the Apple people. Conversation with happy Apple-ites seem like further betrayal to my former tribe. Let’s just get this over with.

I read somewhere recently that when a person walks into a room and then forgets why the hell he walked into that room, it’s because his brain hits a sort of Reset button whenever he passes through a doorway into a different space. That quirk of psychology seems to work in the Apple Store’s favor. And so I walk down the Boylston Street sidewalk toward the Apple Store with Plan Q firmly in mind. But when I find myself on the other side of the massive glass doors, I think “Oooh, shiny!” Plan Q be damned: I will now touch all of the Apple things.

After 20 minutes or so of playing with the latest iPhone (So cool!) and an iPad Mini (So mini!), I approach a smiling blue-shirted Apple employee and ask her where I could pick up my MacBook Air. She smiles and directs me to the pickup desk: “Upstairs, second floor, second desk on your left!” As I make my way up the intimidating spiral glass staircase, I hear her say, presumably into a mic: “Pickup desk, somethingsomethingsomething.”

I am greeted at the top of the spiral by a young, handsome, college-age fellow in a blue Apple shirt. “Hi! Are you here for pickup? Great! I’m Justin.” I introduce myself. Justin then joyfully escorts me to the pickup desk and introduces me to Meghan, another young and attractive Apple employee. She’s overjoyed that I’ve made a purchase. “You’re getting a MacBook Air? Yay! Are you SO excited?!”

“Yeah, I’m pretty excited.”

Meghan is so excited. As we wait for someone to arrive with my box she shows me some “amazing” new speakers that look like seventies-style bongs to me, but I don’t tell her so. “Oh, cool,” I say. I have no idea how these speakers work or what they would attach to, but I don’t have time to ask because here comes another blue-shirted dude with my box. Meghan is beside herself with happiness. She recommends that I have someone help me set my MacBook Air.

“Is that something I couldn’t figure out by myself?”

“Yeah, probably, but you’ll get some super-helpful tips on keystrokes and shortcuts!”

I agree that this would be super helpful. (When did I start talking like this?) Meghan calls Justin back, and asks him to escort me and my white box to another table to get set up. Justin is no less stoked than when I last saw him. As we walk to the next table on the third floor (again up the glass spiral), he extols the virtues of the MacBook Air. “Most people don’t even know about a bunch of great programs that come fully installed on all Mac laptops.” He starts to tell me about a video editing program that I know I will never use.

Something strange is happening.

I become aware that I am grinning stupidly and nodding. I also have the odd sensation of just floating through space to the next table, without having to use my legs to propel me. I am as light as my MacBook Air. I am beautiful and I am light. Maybe it’s all of the glass. Maybe those speakers were bongs.

Somehow we make our way to the next table. I meet Jason, who is stoked over a new music program that he just downloaded to his MacBook Pro. He shows something to Justin, who is equally stoked. But then back to my important box, which Jason takes out of the bag and places in front of me. I’m puzzled for a moment. “Should I open it?”

Justin and Jason both agree that yes, of course I need to open MY box. “You HAVE to open it! It’s like a birthday present!” one of them says. I look at my white, shiny box, knowing that it is not truly mine until …

Jason and Justin merge into one very stoked, blue-shirted being in my consciousness: Jaston. Jaston grins in a stoked manner as I tear away at the plastic wrap, tear into my new identity. I am as the air. I am beautiful and light. I am Apple. I am Air.

 

 

 

 

 

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22 thoughts on “Apple Kool-Aid is the Best Kool-Aid

  1. HemmingPlay

    See, this is good. It will take a little time until you don’t have the culture shock thing every time. Maybe every other time. Then once a week. Then you will have reached otherness. It is beautiful over here. Air land. The home of shiny. Resistance is futile, and really not much fun, anyway. This is all sort of weird at first, but then you realize the machines and software they run really are better. And who does’t want better?

    Eventually, all this gooey shit will wear off and you’ll become an adult again. But I suspect you’ll find a lot to like, some not to like, but overall will come to tolerate it reasonably well. Maybe more.

    And by the way, this post is hysterical. Nice work.

    Reply
    1. notesfromthebathroomfloor Post author

      Thanks! I’m glad you liked it.

      I’m still enticed by the shiny Apple things, though I don’t stand in line for anything and I keep my phone until the bitter end. But seriously, if every store was set up like the Apple store, we would all be mesmerized into penury.

      Reply
  2. simplygiselle

    I am undecided if I am happy for your new purchase or worried you have found a place in the Stepford Wives clan picking iApples. Keep us in the loop in case we need to form an intervention.

    Reply
  3. bensbitterblog

    I love how they go over all the features when really I use it the same way I always do, internet, email, blog, maybe pictures, and that’s it. But it is fun to imagine you will use the editing tool someday. Great post!

    Reply
  4. emdoesthings

    Heh this reminds me of when I was one of the blue shirted geeks.

    We were always told by apple to let the customer unwrap their own box because that is when the magic happens.

    Congrats on your purchase! Welcome to the club.

    Reply
  5. lifelessons

    Your post is hilarious, and I’m so glad you stopped being snotty to Apple people by the end. If you are by now in love with your MacBook Air, you might be interested in a certain poem on my blog (https://grieflessons.wordpress.com/2014/04/07/fidelity-napowrimo-day/ ) named “Fidelity.” I’ve had 10 Macs in my lifetime and I’ve always just bravely faced up to the jeers of PC users–some of them my best friends and family. I’ve heard that born-again Mac users are the biggest Apple Evangelists of all! If you don’t love it, send it to me!!! judy

    Reply
    1. notesfromthebathroomfloor Post author

      Thanks! I think the lesson I learned was that I am neither an Apple person nor a PC person. I just like a thing that works well for the price. Honestly, I think there are all sorts of pros and cons to every device, and in the end it doesn’t really matter. I still use a PC laptop for work, and that’s fine, too. I’m not religious about either (anymore) , and that feels good.

      Or maybe I just don’t like to be a member of a group. Hmm.

      Reply
      1. lifelessons

        I have a PC Acer that I used to watch videos in the pool so my Mac won’t fall in or get splashed. I’ve never quite gotten used to it, however. Mac is intuitive with me—perhaps because it was my first love. Enjoyed reading this again as much as the first time.

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