I got it bad.
This morning within 5 seconds of opening my eyes, I’d reached for my iPhone on the bedside table. The reach with my right arm can be beyond the normal range of motion that my shoulder can accommodate. It would be embarrassing to turn up at the ER with a shoulder out of socket due to reaching for my phone in bed. Still, a risk worth taking. And today turned out not to be the day I would visit the hospital.
So within 10 seconds of waking up, I’m tapping and scrolling through the various apps on my iPhone. Weather Bug to assess whether my 12 year old’s Little League game will be rained out this afternoon. Facebook to see which of my fabulous aunts read my blog post yesterday, and to see how Outside Magazine is making me feel puny today by not free soloing El Cap or not killing a moose in the wilderness with my bare hands and not sleeping overnight within its hollowed out rib cage to survive a blizzard.
Twitter to learn which news events should be top-of-mind before my bare feet hit the bedroom rug. And to see how many followers have beat a hasty retreat from my Twitter feed due to one or another offensive comments that I am evidently prone to posting. LinkedIn to see who has been stalking me, in a professional way, and to do some stalking of my own. Also in a professional way, it goes without saying, I assure you.
WordPress to learn how many readers read what I wrote yesterday, and to scratch my head at who the hell I know in Singapore, Switzerland, and South Africa. I’m big in those places. Instagram for some eye candy, and to ensure that (a) a digital acquaintance has properly observed etiquette by “hearting” one of my Instagram photos after I have “hearted” one of theirs, and (b) I am properly observing the same etiquette.
FitBit to confirm that I’m still atop my totem pole, not dethroned overnight because a buddy rattled off a midnight headlamp run in a bout of insomnia whilst I slept, unmoving. Google Maps to figure out how to get to a morning coffee with a friend, despite the fact that I’ve lived here for 15 years, been to the W Hotel a half-dozen times, and should be able to rely comfortably on my own, analogue memory.
PaybyPhone to stock the parking meter on New Montgomery with enough currency to last through said coffee. And to re-stock the meter from my iPhone screen when I decide to sit and blog in the W’s hotel lobby rather than get wet in the rain outside in the real world.
I’d like to think that all of the apps on my iPhone are mission-critical to the life that I live. To reinforce this, I do go through periodic sweeps, deleting stuff I just never use or that my kids somehow managed to sneak onto my phone surreptitiously. I stare down at the colorful little icons, erasing them from my life, on a digital rampage. It must be terrifying for these little apps, wondering if they will survive the next purge. A previous iOS version showed the apps shaking uncontrollably when a big thumb pressed on them with the intention of cleaning house. I think that’s probably just about right. Shaking in their digital boots.
Well, PaybyPhone, Google Maps, and WordPress apps: Rest easy. I cannot live without you over the next 20 minutes of my life. I need you. The rest of you apps: Be afraid; be very afraid.
Thanks for reading.