Three Hours An Operation on My iPod

There are two tragedies in life. One is to lose your heart’s desire. The other is to gain it.

George Bernard Shaw

Let’s briefly put aside the fact that I managed to break it further and got too tired to debug where the fault comes from. There are bright sides of whimsically cracking open a non-crucial device in one’s e-antiques box, of course.

For starters, I discovered how fixing a modern artifact, one as miniaturized as an ipod7,1, is a soul-bonding experience with the workers who built it in the first place, and the teams that designed it, perhaps.

I don’t know who they are, who engineered the home button bracket; who assembled the original display cables; Who turned on that laser which engraved my name on its back shell…

And yet, those people’s condensed efforts are frozen in time by my side, and has been carried with me to four continents, and ultimately through my entire undergraduate life.

I find myself inclining to reserve this kind of romantic thinking to A, while I shouldn’t. Really. I’d still uphold that my story with A is a local epitome of my poetic views on nature and society but by no means the end of them.

… One screw is tighter than all 8 else; the RF Shield Plate has a fingerprint; the headphone jack housing has a plastic moulding mark; the battery has misaligned Pull Tabs.

These are that kind of things that make me stop and ponder at how much this singular object that I subconsciously accept into my daily life is human. And that ultimately, is a soothing feel.

On the operation table, there were some makeshift things. You know me.

Some, I was comfortable with.

For example, the office area admits no heat-gun, so a glass of boiling water was my heat-source to soften the adhesives. I had no magnetic sheet to store all the #000 Philips screws so my iPad case came to the rescue.

There were also things that, in hindsight, I should not be comfortable with.

My replacement home button that’s colour matched with the new display, for example, was still on its way in the mail; I also felt the Engineering Department’s workshop would be a more suitable place with professional supervision; I also long imagined myself doing this on a weekend morning, when I am more awake and less sweaty …

In all, I wasn’t supposed to greenlight this.

I have hardly thought it’d be today until I felt like it.

I do not know why I am so reserved, and sometimes so do not.

My self-image has been annoyingly frugal with passion, in part because any attempts to ‘live by whims’ usually are met with something on the other extreme. I wouldn’t count them all as failures but the truth is not far.

And yes, I have hardly thought it’d be today. That I walk back from the lab and feel like fixing my broken iPod, and proceed to further break it in a 3-hour hectic run.

Something to think about … and maybe learn from.

The first appearance of ‘Mimosa’ on It was one year old then.
When Powered off it’s pretty cool, right?

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