Saturday, May 1, 2021

Old Is Gold (MY Eng #12)

This is part of a running series about English idioms - less about language, more about life itself. Previously, we covered 'missing the woods for the trees', 'the elephant in the room', 'practising what you preach', blowing hot and cold', 'no smoke without fire', 'one swallow does not make a summer', 'apples and oranges', 'cut to the chase', 'leave no stone unturned', 'that's the way the cookie crumbles' and 'can't have your cake and eat it too'.

Earlier this year, they both turned nine. They were born merely two months apart in January-February 2012. Ever since they were delivered a few months later, they have been largely inseparable from my heart and mind. Every morning, I wake up to their lovely bodies lying at my bedside. One would ring with a familiar chirp, gently nudging me to rise and shine.

Happy 9th birthday, my beloved iPhone 4s and iPad 2!

But age is catching up. They've been struggling to get by, in recent years. They can't upgrade past iOS 10. Some of my favourite apps are no longer compatible (Quora and The Economist). Sadly, they're on their last legs (another idiom) - and teetering on the brink of digital death.

* * *

But I won't give them up just yet! For OLD IS GOLD!.

We've been through so much together. In good times, and bad times. They've kept me company when I'm alone. Especially during everday commutes, and long-haul flights. They feed me food for thought.

Yes, their younger siblings (iPhone >10) may be flashier and faster. But so what? I don't need a wide-lens cameras. I don't need retinal scans. I don't need TikTok nor Clubhouse. I'm happy with the simplicities of the older generation devices. Less distractions. Keeping my phone and tablet to the bare minimum is a great way - to quote from Mark Zuckerberg's own mantra - 'eliminate unnecessary desires'.

So despite their limitations, I'm still not letting them go. Yes, it's frustrating not to have my favourite apps at my fingertips. Yes, it's tempting to keep pace with the rest of the world.

But you know what? I ain't bowing down and buying into the whole tech wave of incremental innovation.

If the latest iPhone beams holographic images like R2-D2, I'll be be the first to go "Where does the queue start? TAKE MY MONEY!"

But if it's just bells and whistles like water-proofing (why do I need go swimming with my phone?), I'll be rolling my eyes and go like "No thanks, bye, see you again in ten years..."

* * *

Call it irrational nostalgia. Or stubborn petulance. Whatever.

Despite their flaws and frailties, my love burns strong. I have no desire to replace them at all. No-one else compares (except maybe my long-dead first love, Nokia 3210). NO-ONE!

In 2022 - less than 10 months away - my iPhone 4s and iPad 2 will turn 10 years old. An incredible milestone awaits. Meantime, we'll continue partying like it's 2012, baby!


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