iPod Appeal

by Mr. Sheehy

It’s a long walk to my desk from the parking lot. Actually, I believe it takes me as long to stroll from my car to my desk as it does to drive from my house to my parking spot. I suppose that reveals how close I live to the school as much as it reveals how large the parking lot and school are, but either way, it turns my close proximity into sometihng like a commute, and for a commute, I willingly turn to my iPod for as much content as I can squeeze in.

In fact, if I had broadband internet at home and was able to download Podcasts at a decent clip, I’d likely have so many on my iPod that I’d be wanting a longer trip to and from work, so as to provide more time to listen. Before hitting the road this morning, I laughed out loud at Act One of the latest This American Life program (I want to call it broadcast instead of program, but I find myself resisting the term). Then, on my way, I giggled at Nick Digilio’s rants and observations, self-consciously checking if I was drawing the attention of other drivers. I am excited to have finally loaded one of my favorite John Fahey albums, which, for some reason having to do with when I bought the album, I suppose, I associate closely with autumn.

And this from a man who was formerly so addicted to morning radio that his favorite days were when he was able to keep the radio on from waking until 9 o’clock. But it’s intriguing and quality content that I wanted the most, and the iPod and its ramifications have delivered to me content I never realized I could get so easily. What an amazing change, and, it seems, an entirely good change. Alan Jacobs, my former college advisor, seems to agree, and he contemplates the iPod’s rise to market domination in a review of Steven Levy’s new book, The Perfect Thing. One interesting aspect of the iPod is its rounded appeal – there are so many reasons to love it, and Jacobs captures this well. My favorite is his noting of the ease of use:

I now find it hard to say what comes easier to me: loading music onto my iPod, playing my iPod, or giving Apple Computer a significant percentage of my disposable income. Maybe that last one, since I had considerable experience with it before the iPod appeared.

Whatever you find easiest, may I recommend you make podcasting part of your easy grabbing function? You can even hear former radio announcers turned teachers talk – if you’re interested.