May 8th, 2008

Tom Lehrer is Smug


I got a "lovingly used" first-gen iPod Nano a coupla months back as a late birthday present. The little scrapper is named LUCKY DENT because, among other things, it's got a dent in the side from where it was pried slightly apart to help drain it out when it went through a washing machine a year or so ago. That it continued to work just fine despite this mishap is a testimony to its nigh-indestructibleness, or so I thought, because it's currently acting as a not-very-useful paperweight unless you've got some Post-It notes to keep steady in a breeze or something.

I can only surmise that its battery had drained out over Sunday/Monday night when it was put in pause instead of turned all the way off. I've heard this has been known to happen, especially when you're trying to turn it off while nonchalantly keeping it in your pocket. However, if the battery's dead and there's not enough of a charge for it to do anything, not even the USB connector will pick it up. Great!

Plugging in the USB connector showed a dim screen telling me "Caution: Very low battery." Okay. Apple's support site, after circularly stepping through the same documents (Step A: Make sure Step B has happened before proceeding. Step B: Make sure Step A has happened before proceeding.) told me that was perfectly fine, leave it like that long enough and it'll get enough of a charge eventually to report back to the computer and then charge up normally.

Only it didn't. I came back in several hours to find a very very very dim Apple logo on its display screen. None of the buttons worked. Apple's circular support site eventually told me "Press and hold the middle button and the top button at the same time for a few, and then press and hold the middle and bottom button at the same time for a few." I did the first step, at which point the screen blinked on briefly and then popped right off. No more Apple logo, no more response, no more nothing. None of the press-and-hold options worked, and neither did placing two fingers on each button and hollering LIVE! LIVE, DAMN YOU, LIVE!

This is such an ignoble way for a device to die. Considering all it's been through, it really should go out in a blaze of glory, saving my life from a Confederate musket ball while resting comfortably in my breast pocket or something. I suppose I could maybe go schedule an appointment at whatever they call the Apple store techs (Genius Bar? Yeah, I'd like a shot of inspiration with a conventional wisdom chaser) but frankly the United Colors of Benetton dressed in all black worry and unsettle me. I hate going in that place.

If anybody's got any ideas as to how to resurrect my poor little Lucky Dent from the grave, please let me know. You can even be condescending if you like, so I can still get the full Genius Bar experience. (I really don't want a newer Nano because they look like poop. Sleeker, rounder poop with video capabilities, sure, but poop nonetheless. I like this little rectangle that I currently have.)

And the funny thing is I wouldn't have cared so much about this thing if I hadn't gotten it as a gift, cause I wasn't about to go buy one myself. I thought I didn't have a need for one and now I can't ride the T without it; I need Jean Shepherd monologues from 40 years ago, goddammit, so I don't have to listen to the guy next to me chewing very loudly on nothing at all.

Damn you technology! Damn you and your seductive, wily ways!