For those of you who do not know me, I come from a long line of pure-bred anxiety.
The primary way that this anxiety manifests itself both in my parents and me is in the form of insane punctuality. We are never late. Growing up, my memories are of arriving thirty minutes early for every film, leaving an hour and a half before the play starts, and beating the clock for every reservation ever. To this day, I have never walked in late to a movie, or a class, or an appointment of any kind. Ten minutes early is on time1.
This obsessive punctuality results in me being absurdly early to almost everything.2 Which is why yesterday, I found myself sitting in the Simmons College coffee shop two hours before my class was supposed to start3. I was hunkered down in one of the couches, listening to my iPod when a friend stopped to talk to me. I turned off my iPod, wound up the cord, and stuck it on the couch beside me, thinking I would pull it back out once said friend left.
But then said friend left. And I forgot about my iPod. And later, when I got up and walked to class, I LEFT MY IPOD ON THE COUCH!
I didn’t realize this until three hours after the fact, when class got out and I was heading to the train. I immediately booked it back to Simmons and proceeded to turn the couch I had been sitting on inside out in the hope that maybe my iPod had slipped between the cushions and no one had taken it. But my little green iPod was nowhere to be found. I decided to try the lost and found, even though, at this point, I had already resigned myself to the fact that most people upon finding an iPod wedged between couch cushions in a public place do not think, “I must walk across campus in the freezing cold to deliver this to the lost and found and ensure that owner and iPod are safely reunited.” Most people think, “Score! Free iPod!” My odds of being reunited with mine were very slim.
At first, I tried to console myself. After all, this iPod is coming up on five years old, and it is beginning to show it. It barely holds a charge, the buttons stick, the top is peeling off, there’s a gouge on the screen, and the sound goes in and out depending on how fast I’m walking4. It has been dropped, stepped on, had diet coke spilled on it, slept on top of, been caught in a treadmill, buried under books at the bottom of my bag, and dropped down a flight of stairs. It has broken my fall when I tripped while jogging. It once had several silicone beads stuck inside the headphone jack that had to be removed by a jeweler5. It would not be the worst thing, I told myself, if I had to get a new iPod. In fact, I’m probably due for one.
But then, as I walked over to campus security’s lost and found desk, I started to think about all the things that little green iPod and I have been through. It has been to three continents and seventeen countries with me. It has moved to six different apartments. It has sustained me through countless flights, train rides, car rides, and hours of boredom. It provided the soundtrack for my life, and aided my antisocialness in countless situations. It gave me music to calm me down when I was freaking out about England, and music to help pump me up when I begrudgingly had to move back to Logan. The first time I heard Iron & Wine, it was on that iPod. All the podcasts from “Wait, Wait” with my name in the credits were listened to on that iPod. It helped me fall asleep on that one red eye flight to Spain and after that one time I saw Woman in Black.
In short, once I lost it, I realized just how attached I was to this little green guy.
I walked up to the campus security desk, looking sort of sheepish because I had to admit I had left my iPod on a couch like a moron, and asked the guy behind the desk, “Did anybody happen to turn in an iPod?”
“Oh, you mean this one?” He said, and he reached under his desk and produced my little green friend.
Think of the greatest reunion scene in your favorite movie6. Then times it by a thousand, because that’s how excited I was to see my iPod. I’m pretty sure the words, “I thought I’d never see you again!” left my mouth, accompanied by a dramatic swell of music. My iPod and I were reunited! The battery was dead, because it had been playing the whole time we had been apart, but hey, can’t have everything.
So, thanks to the kindness of a stranger who saw a little green iPod and decided to turn it in rather than pawn it on ebay for thirty dollars7, a great tragedy has been avoided. It is always encouraging to know that there are good honest people in the world, who understand the sacred bond between girl and iPod.
- There is no surer way to win my heart than by being on time.
- Hence the reason I have twice this week ended up doing homework in an empty movie theater.
- Disclaimer though: two hours is a little much, even for me. I was partly there because my apartment was boring and quiet.
- Though this may have something to do with the fact that I chew on my headphones when I’m nervous.
- Though the Google told me this is a more common problem than one would think.
- I personally go I for Homeward Bound.
- I’m being generous – I doubt you could get that much for this little guy.