iPod is my iGod

Erin Roof

It felt like a mastodon was sitting on my chest. I couldn’t breathe. I couldn’t think straight. I was getting dizzy. I was wondering, “Is it possible to traverse these three blocks without Death From Above 1979 blaring directly into my ear canals? What if someone sees me without those iconic white headphones snaking out of my coat? Will I lose all my indie cred?”

I was walking home from a friend’s apartment one morning, cursing myself for not having my iPod. I didn’t know what to do with myself.

Then I heard this noise. It seemed vaguely familiar. It was a hoot-hoot-tweet, punctured by a little chirpy-chirp every few seconds.


It had been so long since I was out walking around during normal bird-chirping hours, let alone without my trusty iPod. I nearly forgot they existed. I listened to their songs throughout the duration of my 15-minute trek. Then I realized why I always attempt to have my iPod.

Birds suck. Their melodies are weak. I’d take Brian Eno over some blue jay any day. What’s more, I don’t want to hear any of the daily soundscape: no wind rushing through the trees, no rain pitter-pattering. I’ve heard it before. I’m over it.

Along with drowning out nature, my iPod also helps me deal with social situations. As I walk to and from class, I can easily pass hundreds of people. I breeze right by. If I see one of the few people I deem “iPauseworthy,” I may unplug my ears for a brief conversation. But this rarely happens.

The vast majority of the time, I don’t stop to shoot the breeze with the girl who lives down my street or the kid who sat behind me in sociology class three years ago. It’s not because I’m late to some pressing engagement — I am genuinely annoyed at most of humankind and don’t want to bother chatting.

To others in the millennial generation, this is not offensive. The people I pass are also lost in the social oblivion of wheeling through playlists or gabbing on their cell phones, retelling sordid details of their personal lives to the people they would rather be talking to. No one cares.

Older people don’t understand. They see our addiction to technology as a cause for concern. They think we have become too isolated and risk not becoming properly socialized.

I see it as being efficient. Efficiency is what we Americans strive for, isn’t it? I can take all the wasted time I would have spent talking to Joe from that one party and use it perfecting my writing skills, or at least checking my Gmail.

The downside is, I will probably be completely deaf in 10 years from listening to my music at full blast. The large tumor growing on the side of my face from the radiation of too many cell phone conversations will also render me unable to leave my bedroom.

But it will be 2016. I can just recoil into my 3-D alternate universe and never have to see anyone in person again. Awesome.

Erin Roof is a senior magazine journalism major and columnist for the Daily Kent Stater. “She’s definitely iPauseworthy.” Contact her at [email protected].