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The PJ Tatler

by
Scott Ott

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September 21, 2013 - 4:49 am

Apple has managed to sell authenticity to a generation suckled on snarkasm.

Though its iDevices get used to trade billions of sarcastic cracks per day, Apple’s product announcements and commercials offer something rarely seen in this cynical age — genuine passion, untrammeled enthusiasm for one’s work, authentic intensity about the meaning of it all.

Perhaps at some level, that’s what draws us to Apple. They — or at least their executives — seem to truly love what they do, find fulfillment in the accomplishment. They continually unveil new layers of the richness of human experience in engineering, art, music, literature, and they love it without reserve or shame. They gush.

It’s become a trope that our entire work existence is just something we do to get money so that (some day) we can do what we really want to do. But Jony Ive (Apple’s Senior VP of Design) waxes eloquent about a phone/computer that is “beautifully, unapologetically plastic,” and he does it with an expression on his countenance that approaches the rapture of a lover finally pouring out his feelings to the woman of his dreams.

No winking. No eye-rolling. No LOL. He means it. He DOES think the iPhone 5c is “an experience” and he means to make that experience transformative for you.

Wait, that’s not quite right.

Jony Ive means to make the experience transformative for its own sake. You get the sense that the job he does from day to day is so deeply personal and rewarding that he would do it for free, just so he could have the experience of doing it, and then of enjoying the fruit of his labors.

This is counter-cultural, and yet it is not altogether new on the human scene. While most Apple execs would not likely describe it this way, there is something of the old “protestant work ethic” in all of this.

“Whatever you do, work at it with all your heart, as working for the Lord, not for human masters.” (Colossians 3:23) This is not the ethic of the grasper, of the relentlessly driven, nor of the empty heart and the numbed soul trying to feel alive.

The idea is that you have been gifted, and placed by God to do the work you now do, and to do it — not for money or fame — but with a passion that sees your work as a dance before the Creator, who delights in you and rejoices over you with singing. Your work, no matter how menial in the world’s eyes is a “vocation” (from the Latin vox, that means voice) — a calling, from the voice of your maker.

And when you see it this way, the shield of cynicism that you use to guard your heart from feelings of inadequacy, drops to the ground, and you fully engage in life, and work, and relationship…perhaps for the first time, authentically without irony.

Scott Ott co-hosts a news, commentary and humor show called Trifecta on PJTV. He created and hosted the 20-part series on the Constitution titled Freedom's Charter. His satire site, ScrappleFace, spawned three books and praise from Rush Limbaugh, Glenn Beck, Mark Levin and many others.

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Re-reading this .....

."The idea is that you have been gifted, and placed by God to do the work you now do, and to do it — not for money or fame — but with a passion that sees your work as a dance before the Creator, who delights in you and rejoices over you with singing. Your work, no matter how menial in the world’s eyes is a “vocation” (from the Latin vox, that means voice) — a calling, from the voice of your maker. "

....seems to me to be egotism bordering upon blasphemy.
49 weeks ago
49 weeks ago Link To Comment
That reads just a bit too simplistic and idealistic. It'd seem that idealism alone isn't selling all of these gidget-gadgets; perhaps 98.7% of the results are due to superb marketing and the deliberate encouragement of a self sustaining cult-like attitude of having the latest "cool thing".

Beautiful looking and functioning as they seem to be, while seemingly overpriced, the "cool factor" seems to be trumping all else.

Superb marketing conquers a lot.
49 weeks ago
49 weeks ago Link To Comment
One thing I've always demanded from my computers, going back to MS-DOS 4.01, is configurability. I'm one of those odd ducks who wrote batch files and tinkered with my computer to accommodate my workflow.

I dumped Internet Explorer and refuse to adopt Chrome because Firefox has more available add-ons that make it work better for me; Chrome's add-ons seem to be nothing but cosmetic.

My iPhone was an eye-opener about a lot of things I hadn't bothered to try before, but as I looked for ways to make it work better for me I kept bumping into Apple-imposed walls.

Faced with the choice of changing to work within Apple's constraints, or getting a phone that would accommodate mine, I have gone Android.
49 weeks ago
49 weeks ago Link To Comment
"The idea is that you have been gifted, and placed by God to do the work you now do, and to do it — not for money or fame — but with a passion that sees your work as a dance before the Creator, who delights in you and rejoices over you with singing. Your work, no matter how menial in the world’s eyes is a “vocation” (from the Latin vox, that means voice) — a calling, from the voice of your maker."

Great thought for the day Scott. Actually, it's a great thought for the week and year as well. Thanks for sharing that insight.
49 weeks ago
49 weeks ago Link To Comment
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