I bought my first MacBook back in 2008. It was a Christmas present to me since I knew that would be the only way I could get my hands on the machine of a lifetime.
And, well, it proved to be exactly that and more.
I knew Apple products were being touted as the industry’s premiere offering. From iPods to iPhones to MacBooks. If you needed to effortlessly illustrate how remarkably cool you are — just whip out anything related to the Apple family — and you’re in!
The iPad arrived with a grand reception and basically reinvented the blueprint of the tablet. There is every indication that it will eventually play an even bigger and more fulfilling role in the future.
I never invested in the iPad because I didn’t need one.
I had my MacBook.
As the years went on — my love for this very expensive but effective high-powered machine — reached new heights as I began to fully appreciate its sturdy and reliable engine — that was encased in a smooth and alluringly sleek covering.
But things have gotten even sleeker since I made my prolific purchase but back then it was as good as you could get it.
By 2012 — it had been almost four years since I brought my baby home — and then one night in the late fall of that year — just as I was gearing up for another anniversary — the unthinkable happened.
It happened so fast that when it was over — it almost seemed like I had imagined it.
But, the consequences of my actions vividly stared back at me — as I leaned into the pitch black screen and prayed that the power button would come to my rescue.
Nothing. Not a sound. Just the silence of my pounding head and the drip of a large tear.
I had killed my MacBook.
Moments before I was engaged in work and problem-solving with no reason to believe that I was going to fuck every thing up in a matter of seconds.
I continued to stare at my MacBook as I willed it to live. I stubbornly refused to accept that our time together had to end because of my temper tantrums.
Once the mission was clear — damage control took over. I quickly gathered myself and with my prized possession in tow — it was off to the Apple Store to officially learn our fate.
The news was promising. It was going to cost me — but after about 3 hrs of questions, tests, and replacing old parts with new ones — my MacBook reported back for duty as if absolutely nothing had happened.
When we home much later that night — as we sat in the dark — I felt an eerie kinship with this non-living thing that represented so much more than just a stylized keyboard.
It was as if we were unstoppable. If we could survive this close call — then we were definitely life-long companions.
The pact was to — ride or die — till the end.
I took it seriously. And so did Apple’s greatest invention.
Fast forward to almost eight years later and the aging process hasn’t been kind. Like humans, even though you know you’re dying — there is the need to give it your best shot despite the odds.
Things started going down hill in late 2014 — as the original charger stopped working due to wear and tear. Ordering a new one proved to be a pain in the ass. I naively assumed that I could walk into the Apple Store for a replacement.
No. I had to scavenge the Internet and search for the option that would work with my soberly outdated model.
I was met with success not once but twice. But — that wasn’t enough to to prevent the slow decline that manifested in the obnoxiously slow time it took for my MacBook to start and shut down.
Loading pages felt like mini-events and by the spring of this year — I had weathered two near-death experiences — making it utterly clear that it was time to say goodbye.
One last time.
I had been avoiding the inevitable because I simply didn’t have the funds to get an upgrade. I had gotten my dying friend with a credit card at a time when I was able to enjoy such a privilege.
Now, not so much.
The years haven’t been that kind to me either. After surrendering my 9–5 in exchange for my sanity — I moved to New Orleans — and ended up with a chronic hoarder and amassed a hefty pile of debt.
I’ve since recovered from my trippy period of chaos and as things fall into place — I’m faced with the task of releasing the piece of equipment that helped fuel the highs and lows of my existence.
I was 35 years old when the beckoning Apple symbol became a daily ritual and now I’m in my early forties.
So much has changed. I have since made the transition to full time writer and I finally left New York City for good.
The one constant through this crazy journey called life was my MacBook.
I am emotional about it because it never gave up on me. Even when the stakes were too high. Even when I abused it for something that was completely out of its control.
It refused to leave me.
There is something amazingly affecting about the bond that develops between man and machine.
I’m almost inspired enough to write a short film about it. Maybe I will.
In the meantime — I was forced to dump an old model for a newer one. It’s kinda like forsaking your first love who will always be your only love.
Unfortunately love is never enough.
As I bask in the joy of my newly minted relationship — I can’t help but look back and reminisce about the good ole days — when I lost myself in the haze of editorial bliss with the blessing of a magical wonder that doesn’t even know how much I will miss it.
But again — humans are just as clueless and robotic. It feels good to bear the brunt of our separation.
It reaffirms that I am a living thing.
So, goodbye to the yesteryears and hello to what’s to come.
Change is good but memories are forever.