I am surprisingly sadder than I thought I would be when I woke up this morning and switched on my Mac only to see a black and white photo of Steve Jobs on the front page of the Guardian. I did not even see the text written on the photo and I already knew, Steve Jobs was gone.
It’s strange. I knew that he was ill, and so his death came as no surprise. I’m an Apple fan, but I’m nowhere an enthusiast like my siblings are and so I did not idolize Steve Jobs as the Artist and the Psychologist did.
And yet, the first thing I did was to call my husband. I wanted him to know that Steve Jobs was gone. And I felt sad, genuinely sad.
It was very strange to feel such loss for a person you had never met. But I did. For the entire day, interspersed with work, I kept looking up about Steve Jobs. I knew he was kicked out of Apple in the early 90s, and then he came back. I knew a little bit about his involvement in Pixar – but I never knew much else. All I know about Steve Jobs essentially was through my Mac, which I adore.
My Mac is really my first Apple product that I love and adore. I have an Ipod, which I stopped using after a while, and the husband loves his Ipad more than I do. I find the Ipad cumbersome, to be honest. But my Mac is my lifeblood. I wake up to my Mac, I sleep next to it, and it’s the last thing I see before I go to bed. To the chagrin of the husband, but that’s another story for another day.
My Mac helps me earn a living. My previous Toshiba did that but it crashed on me spectacularly that I lost a chunk of my writing, and so it’s hard to feel fondness for a machine. My Mac, on the other hand is stable, it’s fun and it’s sleek. In a funny way, it becomes an essential tool for me to earn a living, to manage my life, to communicate with my friends. It’s easy, it’s reliable and very rarely crashes. It’s fast and it can tolerate my bajillion windows that I love to open. I chat with my friends overseas, I skype with my sister, I blog and I write. When I’m bored, I take silly pictures with my photobooth. My Toshiba was a tool. My Mac is an extension of me.
And Steve Jobs had created a product that could respond to me, mould to me that it almost feels that he created the product with ME in mind. And I’m sure other Apple users feel the same way, that an Apple product is created for them.
The more I read about Steve Jobs, the more wonderful he seems. He was by no means, a pleasant man. He was no philantrophist like Bill Gates or Warren Buffet. There were many aspects of the man that people did not like. But he made things that made people happy.
My dad came from his classes today looking really sad. He said he felt genuinely sad over Steve Job’s death. “I don’t know how to describe it,” he said. “I felt like we lost more than just Steve Jobs, we lost everything with him, all the great ideas, all the future Ipads, Iphones and Macbooks.”
My sister, the Psychologist woke up feeling devastated. Steve Jobs, she said changed her life. ‘With Steve Jobs, it felt it’s okay to fail, because you can come back out of it, and work hard, that things happen for a reason.’
Indeed, how many people can claim to come back from a devastating experience like being kicked out of the very company you founded? Only to bounce back with a company like Pixar and building the same company that you were kicked out off to the second most valuable company in the world, second only to Exxon Mobil.
There are so many things I feel right now, regret that I did not try to read more and learn more about the man during his lifetime. But certainly a greater sense of comfort as I read about his life, about the choices he made in life. I am no Steve Jobs, I cannot come close to his stature; it would be arrogant to assume I could be. But the path he chose in his life is certainly the road less taken, that I gain great comfort knowing that there were giants before me, who had followed their hearts and had done something wonderful. It does not make my own life choices any less scary, but certainly, it makes me feel more confident that I’m doing what’s right by me.
Thank you, Steve Jobs