I walked by the Apple Store on Greene and Prince Streets in Soho today and saw maybe 8-10 people camped out, waiting for the iPhone to hit on Friday. As I’ve read the news reports of this behavior I haven’t gotten really bent out of shape about it: this is the culture we live in. But something rubbed me the wrong way today — maybe it was the CNBC camera crew interviewing one of the campers — and I got really, really pissy. How messed up is it that people are more willing to make a sacrifice on behalf of a cell phone than to protest a war that kills thousands of people a month?
I said out loud: “How about spending some of this iPhone energy protesting the war in Iraq?” to which I heard mumbles in reply. It may have been childish, unhelpful, and annoying for me to say that. But I couldn’t help myself. It’s a phone — a very cool one, by all admissions — but still a frickin’ phone.