Wednesday, March 9, 2011
My Only Indulgence is Music…Or Manic Mondays
By Robin Kaye
I drive a lot. Yesterday I put over two hundred miles on my car, and when I drive, I listen to my iPod. I have every piece of music I own on there, and I can’t stand the thought of leaving home without it. It’d be like not having a book or my Kindle in my purse. What would I read while standing in a checkout line or while waiting for one of my three kids? What would I do? It would be a huge waste of time, and I despise wasting time.
Last night, I got into my car after driving my daughter to her school (an hour and a half away) and spending the day at my favorite Starbucks. Driving through the deserted parking lot, I pressed the button on my iPod and scrolled through the genres to writing—I was all set to find the perfect RWA workshop to listen to on the drive home. I found one on time management, selected it, and heard the lovely voice of the moderator—and then, it died.
I checked the audio jack. It was secure. I pressed the button again. Nothing. Yeah, we’re talking heart attack central! My iPod had stopped working!
I pulled over (because I never use electronic equipment while driving) and reset it. Still a black screen. Panic crawled up my spine and set up housekeeping in my neck. I pulled out my charger, plugged it in, and waited a moment while I tried some calming self-talk (it didn’t help). After a while I tried another reset, to no avail. I flipped on my blinker, and headed home, thinking it might take a few minutes. Ten minutes later, I stopped at a light and tried again. Not even the flash of my beloved apple insignia. And so it was the entire way home.
I suppose I could have turned on the radio, but I was too busy wondering how I’d survive without my iPod. I tried plotting my next book, it was no use. I can’t plot without music and the thought of listening to the radio left me cold. No one has a mix of music I can tolerate and don’t even get me started on commercials. I haven’t listened to the radio since the day I got my first iPod and have yet to miss it.
I went through nightmare scenarios because at-this-point-in-time, I have a computer to buy for my daughter, Twinkle Toes—a new iPod is not in the budget. Yet, an iPod is essential to my mental health. I drove ninety miles wondering how I’d manage to get a new iPod tomorrow without looking like a bad mother. No, I couldn’t figure it out either. I was all set to go quietly mad while doing the right thing, and purchasing a computer for Twinkle Toes. I usually don’t mind putting everyone’s needs before my own. I’m a grown-up, I’d do just about anything for my kids, but this time… Well, the thought of it wasn’t pretty.
I made the journey home, unplugged my dead iPod and trudged into the house with a heavy heart. I was certain I’d have at least an overnighter in Bellevue before I could figure out how to finagle a new iPod. I plugged my beloved indulgence into the computer and nothing happened so I went to work on a blog I had to post before bed. And then wonder of wonders, the screen of my iPod lit up and warned me not to disconnect it! Yay! Hope blossomed. If I nurtured it, with any luck it would take root. Maybe it would be okay after all. Then that cute little battery symbol popped up with the lightening bolt running through it. All was well in my world. Twinkle Toes gets her computer, I’m not a bad mother, and my mental health is intact.
I’ve learned a few very important lessons. The first of which is—start saving for my next iPod—now. I don’t think I’ll survive another close call like this without knowing I can run right out and replace my security blanket. The second lesson I learned is always charge my iPod. I don’t ever want to drive ninety miles with nothing but obnoxious drivers to abuse my senses.