Are you willing to drop down onto the subway tracks to retrieve it? I would, and I have. In fact, mine was a pre-iPod MP3 player that only cost half as much. But I needed it. So did Tom Beller who wrote very melodramatically about it in “The City” section of Sunday’s The New York TImes. His fiance’s reaction was one of pure horror, as was the commenters’ over at Gothamist. (And Andrew Hearst feels the same way. Statistically speaking, it’s only a matter of time before someone does what Beller and I have done and ends up the first iPod-related subway casualty. (Although I can’t specifically recall any stories off the top of my head, I’m sure this has already happened for cell phones.) Why risk it? The obvious argument has to do with throwing money away, but what if it’s deeper than that? What if it’s pure addiction?
A while back on his blog, Mark Cuban announced we had reached “The end of boredom:”
“When we leave the house now, its keys, wallet, phone/pda/IPod, lock the door.Â The minute we have nothing better to do, or our mind starts to wander, regardless of where we are, meetings, events, elevator, exercise bike, walking down the street, out it comes… We are going to become increasingly dependent on these devices not because we think they are amazing or wonderful, but because they are there. They do their job. They distract us.
So just how far would you go to not be bored? I’d go down on the tracks again, if that’s what it took.