I wanted to smash his face into the display case, this glib, gum chewing salesman. He informed me that my Ipod shuffle’s battery was worn out, that I should just throw out the whole unit. “It’s not meant to last forever. It’s designed to stop working.” So I threw it away then and there, this well designed piece of metal and plastic. I didn’t buy another one, but I imagine I will. What a horrific consumer bind I’m in! Buying products designed to fail is truly atrocious, is it not?
But wait! Is Apple not on the cutting edge of understanding consumer desire? Perhaps they imagine these objects of theirs, these sensibly created creatures that caress our bodies so seamlessly, to mirror our own bodies’ elegant failures, to acknowledge and embrace the temporary. Yes, perhaps now we can begin to understand the true nature of these objects we hold so close to our hearts. We can feel for them in their useless heaps; we can empathize with their roles in direct relation to our own fallen bodies!
Yes! If one can cherish the silky skin of a lover, the slick sheen of an Ipod, or the waxed gleam of a ripened apple, can one not, at worst, empathize with their decay, their moist and gurgling breaks? Can we not feel the warmth of commonality with the splintered creaks and moans of Ikea’s lacquered beech, their hinges corroded like the sour crunch of a decayed tooth? Why, these noises point to our own sweet putrification. Hear it! Taste it! This is the drooping collapse of love! These are our collective bodies. These are our shared and beautiful tragedies. These are our designs of rot! We are the objects together! And we fail!
Hail to the wretched mess of Apple! Hurrah for Ikea! Purveyors of honesty! No hideous immortality. No zombie antiques. No undead heritage. Let our furniture sleep. One can almost hear the pleas of statues and artifacts, remnants of ancient lands dug up, museum bound, “Let us work no longer. Please, no more. Let us die!”