I don’t own an mp3 player of any kind.
That’s right. No iPod. No Zune. No nothin’. I don’t own one, and I ain’t been sorry. Just about every time I see some kid zoning out with buds in his ears I think of the “seashells” in Fahrenheit 451. Here Guy Montag, Bradbury’s hero fireman, describes the two in his wife’s ears:
The little mosquito-delicate dancing hum in the air, the electrical murmur of a hidden wasp snug in its special pink warm nest. The music was almost loud enough so he could follow the tune.
Without turning on the light he imagined how this room would look. His wife stretched on the bed, uncovered and cold, like a body displayed on the lid of the tomb, her eyes fixed in the ceiling by invisible threads of steel, immovable. And in her ears the little Seashells, the thimble radios tamped tight, and an electronic ocean of sound, of music and talk and music and talk coming in, coming in on the shore of her unsleeping mind. The room was indeed empty. Every night the waves came in and bore her off on their great tides of sound, floating her, wide-eyed, toward morning. There had been no night in the last two years that Mildred had not swum that sea, had not gladly gone down in it for the third time.
What writing. What prescience. That was 1953. It could be tomorrow.
Ah, but my immunity to the revolution ends soon. I’d been planning to get into some regular running this fall, but I’ve been hampered by a toe broken when — two days before I went to Launch Pad — one of the long thick steel bars of my Stage 3 roof rack fell on it (I was stupidly wearing Tevas) and sent it through all measures of color and size. I think it’s just about healed now, thankfully.
The time off from the exercise, however, has given me some cause to ruminate on how much I might enjoy it more with one of these newfangled music machines. So I ordered me a discontinued Sony, and it shipped today. It’ll arrive next week, by which time I hope to be finished stretching for my first run in far too many months.