A great part of my defense mechanism is blocking out memories that bring me sadness. In the past two days, this defense mechanism has been working overtime. I have diligently evaded all Steve Jobs news, all Steve Jobs discussions, all Steve Jobs homages and all Steve Jobs biographies. I have even evaded a frown-faced mom who is, in an inexplicable way, saddened by his death.
Today, however, I just couldn’t pry my eyes away from his face looking at me on the cover of The Mercury Times, lying on my dinner table. I picked it up, saw a beautiful homage made by a fan (a perfectly polished white rock with the words ‘inspire’ handwritten in Apple’s favorite font). And just like that, the wall built by my huffing and puffing defense mechanism came crashing down. I was silently crying and I just couldn’t figure out why. He was the creator of my favorite pieces of technology. But I own so many gadgets! What made his gadgets so special? What made him so special?
In 2004, my father sent me a forward. It was a long speech by a man called Steve Jobs. A commencement speech at Harvard. I started reading it because my dad had sent it. I continued because I couldn’t stop. I kept rereading it because every word he spoke were God’s words to me. His words urged a young teenage girl to take the first step in faith. It urged her to follow her dreams even when people could not see them with her. It urged her to believe that she would only be able to connect the dots looking back.
Since then, every Apple product that I have owned has been an affirmation to the fact that creativity, followed in good faith, creates magic. And even though the creator is gone, his art will live on.
Someone said that fashion is one of the greatest art forms because you live your life in it. Steve Jobs proved that beautiful, intuitive technology is a greater art form because you live your life with it.
As I type this on my macbook pro (the original one with the silver keyboard), I am at another threshold in my life. I am starting my education for a new career, one that will test the strength of my creativity and courage. And like a true follower of the man that made technology beautiful, I pledge to make it count.