Times like these

(ed: this piece composed on an 8GB, 1st gen iPod touch)

It’s 4 AM. Again. I should be asleep. I should be writing. There are a lot of things I should be writing about, and yet very few things worth writing down. Tonight, after 3 decent hours of sleep, the nostalgia machine started churning, taking me back to those thrilling days of yesteryear when sleep was not just a luxury, but a tradable commodity.

In 2007, my star was riding high. Two years ago now, I was heading down to a science fiction convention to remind myself why I do what I do. Also, I had World Series tickets, which I did not pay for. I had just purchased a new telephone, one with decent messaging capabilities and the ability to type and store brief notes. I thought it would be a neat idea to travelogue our journey to the series on that device, but I quickly became bored with the process, and spent more time writing about other telephones I had owned.

In seven hours, I’ll be heading north of the border with friends to attend a U2 Concert. 24 hours after that my plane will be landing in San Jose to attend a science fiction conventon. I’m writing this on a portable handheld device whose primary function is to play music, the very device I bought the aforementioned telephone to avoid carrying around. Yesterday my combat shopping ways found me an upgraded version of this device at a significant savings over the retail price (i.e., most). It has all the bells and whistles I desire, plays music, movies, plays games, and also types and stores brief notes.

Just like the one in my hands, which cost me practically nothing. Can’t carry them both around, and even though this one is several years old, “small” by comparison, and not as advanced, it commands an astonishingly high resale value.

Unlike a telephone. Both the one I had then (which I sold off this summer to pay for a pair of Bluetooth headphones, unusable with this device but perfect for the one that will be) or my current model, which primarily sees use as a mobile texting platform. It also plays music, movies, and games, and connects via Bluetooth to a pretty nifty pair of headphones.

I’m lying on my back with artificial full spectrum light illuminating my large fingers tapping away at a small keyboard. Over yonder in my bag is a much larger keyboard, one obtained specifically so that I can type brief notes, play games, music, movies, and go on the intarwebs to shop for upgraded bits of technology. It also writes, or rather, enables the writing of, works of fiction.

Just like the one here in my hands. Or charging over yonder, just waiting in case I want to make a telephone call. In fact, my small, portable computer has a telephone number too, so that I can connect from the intarwebs from just about anywhere.

Now isn’t that useful. In a house full of computers, I can go anywhere else and connect to the internet, which is also right here in the palm of my hand. Or on my belt. Or in my bag. Or at the desk I should be sitting at, instead of lying on this couch.

But for all my toys and connectivity, there is no single piece of technology in my posession that will give me even one more hour of sleep. Just things to keep me company while I wait.

I think there’s an app for that…

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