[image by way of the hubze blog site]
“I don’t remember yesterday. Today it rained.” ~ Three Days of the Condor (1973)
Those who know me realize I tend to write about things through a perspective of the popular arts. Wednesday, October 5th was a rainy, dark day here in my part of the southland. Made even more so by the news that Steve Jobs passed away. The above quote immediately came to mind as I stared out the window reflecting upon that announcement. Ever since, there’s been a tremendous outpouring of tributes to the man most associated with Apple (whether you ended the word with ‘Computer’ or ‘Inc.’ doesn’t really matter) and to similar extent, Pixar. Many of these are quite thoughtful and moving, and communicated across the medium he didn’t invent (the internet), but for which he affected and helped to shape. The use and crowning of the letter ‘i’ upon the products he steered into our consciousness (and daily lives) seems to somehow punctuate that. The effect most clearly is felt across a whole spectrum of people meditating upon this one person since that day.
It’s difficult to put into words that come close to summarizing a day I’ll always remember the when and where of it all. Like Elvis or John Lennon (or others deemed significant enough to insert here) leaving this mortal coil, this was that for many of us. Still, others are doing way better than I ever could writing down their thoughts contemplating this extraordinary 56-year old man. Most personally, my friends Kaye (Steve Jobs – RIP) and Ruth (A Small Tribute to a Visionary Giant – RIP Steve Jobs), and John Gruber (Universe Dented, Grass Underfoot), Dan Frakes (Jobs humanized technology, made the magical common) and David Pogue (Steve Jobs: Imitated, Never Duplicated) from the tech world that takes up some of my daily work life. For my part, all I can think to say is that this man made a contribution to a countless number of us in a very distinctive way. He may not have invented the term PC, but he did manage to make the computer somehow personal.
“… a bicycle for the mind” ~ Steve Jobs describing the Macintosh
So, it is in movies and music I somehow find myself centered upon when thinking about it all. Certainly, his Macs have grown to have lives across both mediums, in point of fact. As is my habit from time-to-time on this blog to highlight music on Friday, I had the notion to commemorate my inadequate thoughts on the subject in song. “But what?“, I thought. No surprise two popped out from my iPod (a device Jobs did inspire and deliver upon) — one with words and one without. Hopefully, they’ll mean something to those who listen and remember the man, as they do me.
The first is Crowded House’s Don’t Dream It’s Over from 1986 (written by Neil Finn):
And the second, and perhaps most fitting, is the haunting instrumental from the soundtrack of the 2007 film The Kingdom, Finale (scored by Danny Elfman):
[screen cap care of NY Times website]
- Former Pixar Employee Shares His/Her Time With Steve Jobs (pixartimes.com)
- Internet Mourns Steve Jobs’ Death (kimberleyvassalinsurance.wordpress.com)
- RIP Steve Jobs (elakkiya.com)
- Think Different Remixed with Steve Jobs (mymodernmet.com)