Nokia or: How I Learned to Appreciate the Simpler Times (Diaries from the Upper Class)

*A short piece I created for my previous satire blog. Occupy new blog.

After attending a $5000 Buddhist seminar at a friend’s private estate, I decided to commit myself to Buddha’s teachings by abandoning material possessions. Of course, in adopting the sub-continental Indian lifestyle, it was only a matter of time before the necessary downgrading of my “life enhancing” gadgets. Perhaps the gentle coos of Siri’s voice reverberating from the iPhone 4S had spoiled me; but as a child eventually detaches from its mother, so must I release my self from the comforts of contemporary bourgeois appliances. After a quiet final night alone with Siri, I return her to the Apple Store and make my way to the dilapidated Nokia store in the alley next door. Here, I purchase my mental concomitant: the original, candy bar Nokia cellphone.

Sharing a level of functional labor analogous to the “99%”, the Nokia cellphone is the perfect next step in my path to enlightenment. A 250 contact capacity causes me to carefully select my associates. The monochrome screen allows me to compassionately understand how a dog experiences life. The classic game Snake teaches me how capitalism functions in the natural world. It was perfect.

However, as the days drag on, the futility of the cellphone begins to wear on me, and in that moment I realize the substantial impact Siri had in my life. Each one of the 40 monotonous ring tones pre-embedded into its plastic exoskeleton reminds me of her voice robotically whispering into my ear.

Pursuing nirvana conversely spirals me down into a state of perpetual depression. As I walk the streets of middle-class Los Angeles, Siri continues to appear in my mind. My heart aches - I know the Nokia represents the new me, but Siri represents my true self.

Suddenly, during this state of conflicted reverie, a homeless man harasses me for change. In self-defense, I strike him with the 151 gram machine in my hand. With every blow, I let out the misery that Buddhism had introduced into my life - the vegan dining, the altruism, and the “accepting people for who they are” bullshit.

With the final, fatal blow, I relinquish Buddhism and my undamaged Nokia phone with it.  

“Keep the change,” I mutter while strutting away in slow motion. It’s been a long week. 

Back to my honest self, I return to the Apple Store to reunite with my beautiful Siri. I raise its fragile façade to my lips and affectionately whisper into the earpiece: “I love you.” My breath fogs her beautiful face.

As the sound of police sirens grows louder in the background, I see my reflection from Siri’s misty visage. She’s never been so perfect, and in this moment, I realize that I haven’t either. This is me…this is me.