I think the most interesting thing to happen yesterday was the right side of my Apple earbuds died. Aren't you glad you came back to my blog to find out about this? But wait, I have more details!
Apple is evolving in ways I'm finding increasingly annoying. The way iTunes syncs to the iPhone has never been as satisfying or straightforward as the way it syncs to the iPod Classic, which they stopped manufacturing in 2014, much to my everlasting disappointment. But, in the three and a half years since then, the iPod Classic could still be used, and even be replaced with refurbished old models upon hard drive failure, something I have done a few times over the years. I've had a deep love of my iPod Classic ever since getting my first one for Christmas from Shobhit in 2006 (back then, of course, we just called it "the iPod" rather than "iPod Classic"; the iPod Touch -- which I never got -- was not invented yet). I even named it Colin! -- After Colin Farrell, the hottest actor alive.
Well, it's a decade and change later, and even iPhones -- of which I got my first one in 2008 -- has evolved significantly, ditching the old headphone jack for just the Lightning connector back in 2016, which even then was after the last time I upgraded my phone; I surely will again sooner than later at this point, at which time I will have to deal with only the Lightning connector on my phone. On the upside, it appears the newer phones finally have enough memory to hold my entire music library, which was really the biggest barrier to my moving on from the iPod Classic in the first place.
But, I'm not quite there yet, while Apple has apparently moved on in ways incompatible with people like me. I stopped at the AT&T Store on Pike and Fourth on my walk home yesterday, asked if they sold Apple headphones, and at first was told yes -- but then was told they sell only the headphones with Lightning connectors. My current iPhone (6s) has both a regular headphone jack and a Lightning connector, but there's no Lightning connector on the iPod Classic, which is what I need to be able to plug my headphones into. I had thought I might have to go to the Apple Store to get replacement headphones, but the guy told me they don't sell the old headphone jack earbuds there anymore either. God damn it!
Well, whatever. I have a spare of the old-design Apple headphones in my bag, and although they are comparatively shitty, they do work. They'll tide me over for a few days. I found the Apple headphones I do need on Amazon, actually selling for roughly half the $30 price they typically go for at the Apple Store, and I ordered a pair of those -- estimated to arrive sometime between March 21 and March 28. That seems like a weirdly long wait but I guess I'll survive.
There were Comcast Xfinity swag bags given out at the Braeburn Condos Annual Meeting on Monday, which actually people had already pilfered by the time Shobhit and I got a look at them after the meeting. Still, Shobhit grabbed a pair of earplugs, and I thought maybe I could use them and nearly left with them this morning. The problem with those was not only is the sound quality terrible, but the jack was too thick to fit securely through the opening in my phone cover, so most of the time even those only worked in the left ear! Jesus Christ. So, I'm still having to stick with my old spare Apple headphones for now. I'd rather use a pair of semi-shitty earbuds that actually work in both ears than any pair that only works on one side.
Well, all that dull shit about iPods gave me a means of filling up some space today, anyway.
Shobhit has a bad cold currently and is even taking a sick day from work today. I'm desperately trying to avoid catching whatever he's got, and we'll see how that works. In all likelihood if I were to catch it, it would have been sometime when his symptoms were not yet showing. Still, he coughs without covering his mouth way too often, spreading that shit everywhere, and it drives me crazy.
In any case, he does want to see Black Panther and I had hoped to go see it with him last night, but he wasn't feeling well so that will have to wait. I just walked home, and he had already made lentils and rice, which was what we had for dinner. We actually never watched any TV together last night. I caught up on Twitter on my phone while he watched news shows on his laptop, and then I went to the bedroom for much of the rest of the evening, although we did later spend a little less than an hour doing the crossword at washingtonpost.com. We actually solved this one without ever looking up the answers. No wait, I did look up the four-letter word for Rihanna's #1 hit in 2016, which I should have been able to remember but I was totally blanking, so I looked at the music app on my phone to check the album track list. But that was it!
I actually did manage to get some reading of my library book done at home last night! I finally have less than 100 pages left of The Master and Margarita, although I'm still waiting for the author to make some sense of the pretty vast amount of chaos going on in it. Satan figures pretty prominently as a character and yesterday I read a chapter that took this from just plain zany to pretty dark -- like, legit "Satanic ritual" dark (I mean, Satan himself is there, after all), in a way that would probably genuinely unsettle some of my more religious family members. And I'm just kind of like, okay whatever.
Not that I have to defend any novels I read or anything, but I still feel compelled to note that the sole reason I got the book was because it also features a talking cat named Behemoth. I had no idea that within the first chapter a guy would be decapitated in the process of being run over by a tram -- basically the inciting incident of the story. That was just an added bonus. Also, four chapters switch the narrative all the way back to Biblical times and essentially retell the crucifixion of Jesus, which is surprisingly interesting. Apparently this was a wildly popular novel in Russia when first published there in the sixties (after first being written in the thirties). It features several variations of the name "Ivan" amongst its characters -- two different ones actually called Ivan, one being the main character through much of it; another called Ivanovich; another called Ivanushka. I texted Ivan that string of names last night without context -- "Ivan Ivanovich Ivanushka" -- and he basically paid it no mind whatsoever, instead responding this morning with the story of two guys who attempted to rob him in a subway station on his way out of Athens.
Bringing it back to the novel: I learned about The Master and Margarita as it was referenced in the New York Times review of My Cat Yugoslavia, which Ivan was reading and recommended shortly before he left. Incidentally, the apostle Matthew also appears as a character in The Master and Margarita, albeit briefly.
"I will admit to being more than a little skeptical of this character, loyal as I am to Mikhail Bulgakov’s 'The Master and Margarita' and its most iconic figure: Behemoth, that formidable hedonist against whom all fictional felines must be measured."
[posted 12:26 pm]