Thursday, October 6, 2011

iCare About You, Too

It's sad when someone dies at 56, especially someone whose ideas and leadership have had such a huge impact on modern life. So RIP, Steve Jobs. My heartfelt condolences to his family and to his worldwide network of colleagues, friends, and admirers.

I mean no disrespect when I say that, to me, Mr. Jobs was just a man who made a lot of machines. Precocious Daughter has an iPod Touch, and it's a way-cool gadget. But I'm not an Apple person myself; the cultish devotion to Steve Jobs as a visionary and Apple products as a gateway to a better life is not something I get behind. I do hope the spirit of innovation he embodied will live on, but not in a shrine-building, let's-go-visit-Jim-Morrison's-grave way. Mostly I hope he left his company in good hands and his family well provided for.

While everyone else is putting #iSad hashtags on their tweets today, I'm thinking about other people. People almost no one else knows, but whose lives are infinitely more important to me than Steve Jobs'. Because they're connected to me not by Bluetooth or "the cloud," but by their hearts. I'm pretty sure none of them has ever done anything globally influential. But I love them, and I'm thinking about them in my own technologically backwards but user-friendly way.

Sending out love to:

Sharon, a truly fabulous lady who actually attended Woodstock and who is passionate about animal rescue. As I write this, she's in ICU and frankly not doing well. She never invented anything, but she did create two wonderful sons who share her humor and passion. I love them all.

Sonny, my outlaw brother-in-law who recently lost his own Beloved Spouse to cancer. His devotion to her shone through until her very last moment, and his strength and grace have been inspiring. Sonny, if you see this, I love you, man.

Bobby, my cousin (who probably hasn't been called Bobby in decades, but that's how I know him from way back when), who is undergoing knee surgery today. I hope your pain is banished and your recovery is swift and complete.

Karen, my dear friend and mom of Riley the Wigglewurst, who hopefully is home from the hospital for good this time. She shares with Steve Jobs the knowledge that your liver actually is important and having it go on the fritz can cause serious problems. Enjoy your new TV. :)

Noelle, another dear friend, who has survived a spell of misfortunes that would have turned me into a lump of low-grade dog food if I'd had to endure it. Hospitalizations, family health scares, divorce, unemployment - she's an amazing person and doesn't deserve anything but the sweetest, easiest life imaginable. She hasn't had it, yet she's remained optimistic and resilient. You're amazing, girl.

And to everyone who has been my friend, my loved one, my lifeline; who has cared for me and about me even while fighting personal battles big and small; who has touched me with generosity, compassion, and bear hugs: It would have been really awesome if you'd invented the iPhone and then put me in your will so I could ride your coattails to wealth and power. But it's even more awesome that you're part of my life.

Tell someone you love that you love them today. Use an iPhone if you must. Just do it.

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