Garrett (garote) wrote,
Garrett
garote

The Magic Device

This whole week I've been sick with the flu. Last weekend I began feeling it, and at work on Monday the downward spiral really started. I bowed out of work and spent two days glued to the bed. The few times I did get up, it was to stumble downstairs and whine at The La about how sick I was, or to request snacks, or to catch The Daily Show.

Most of the time in bed was not spent sleeping. I just laid there in a daze. Occasionally I would have an interesting thought, and jot it down in the Notepad app of the iPhone.

Yes, the iPhone! That is the titular magic device.

It has a remote-control app on it that works beautifully. With it, I could browse around the music library inside the computer and queue up relaxing ambient music on the stereo. Mostly Rapoon, Harold Budd, and Oophoi. A nice scrolly hand-held interface to every piece of music I own.

At the same time, I played a Terry Pratchett audiobook on the iPhone itself. Lords And Ladies, a Discworld novel. Nigel Planer's voice came honking out of the tinny internal speaker, telling me all about the deeds of Magrat, Nanny Ogg, and Granny Weatherwax, up in the Ramtop mountains. I let the phone rest beneath my chin, and closed my eyes. Aside from being sick and wooly-headed, it was a really pleasant way to pass the time. Playing an audiobook with matching background music is fun.

Sometimes I was feeling too sick and lazy to even get out of bed. So I would grab the phone and call La, who was sitting downstairs. Tap the 'speaker' button, and it was my personal intercom, like the ones you used to see in sprawling mansions. "Come kiss meee!" I'd say, or, "I want some water!"

Sometimes I was too sick to speak. The iPhone had a solution for that too. I'd launch the AIM client and tap out a message to La with my thumbs. Soon her iChat window would fill up with "Kisseez plz!" and "Moooooo!", distracting her from her homework.

And sometimes I felt like websurfing ... no problem of course. I was also surprised to observe that I could listen to an entire 8-hour audiobook without needing to charge the phone.

Being sick sucks, yes. But having cool gadgets can soften the blow.

Now, when I'm sitting on the couch and I want to turn off the living room light, I find myself reaching for the phone. Even more amusing: If I threw a couple hundred bucks out for the right doodads, the iPhone could do that too.
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