I know what’s going on, here. I can see it clearly, even though I’m fizzing mad and on the verge of kicking the furniture.
I’m watching the Labour Party tie itself up in a Gordian knot over its Brexit policy by doing that old party dance, hokey pokey. You know – In? Out? Shake it all about. Then I’m reading the Supreme Court judgment on our pathological liar and all-round scoundrel of a prime minister. All this should be making me livid. But instead, here I am tying myself up in a Freudian knot. I am engaging in what psychologists call anger displacement, transferring my anger away from Labour and Johnson and fuming about something trivial, the software bugs that have wreaked havoc on my new iPhone.
The old one started dying after two vertical orange stripes appeared on the screen, but I ignored them. It’s just a phone, right? Then some of the apps started crashing. Okay, I shrugged, it’s still just a phone. Then the touchscreen got picky about which parts I could touch, no matter how hard I tapped. Finally, a few weeks ago a friend who called me shouted there was too much interference and echo on the line and he’d ring back when I had returned from deep space.
So I took the plunge, backed up my data and bought another phone. But when I transferred everything across and updated to the latest IOS 13 operating system – so new there was still steam coming off it – I got a series of unpleasant surprises.
A couple of my most-used apps simply vanished. The one I’ve been using to track spending wouldn’t update, and then before my eyes – hey presto! – erased itself, taking a decade of financial data with it. But another disaster awaited me. My music collection had been wiped out, and when I began the laborious process of transferring playlists of ripped CDs from my computer the app decided to scramble most of the artwork. For instance, I currently have Bruce Springsteen’s Tunnel of Love masquerading behind the cover of Bob Dylan’s Highway 61 Revisited.
What really makes me furious is that Apple chose to release an operating system that wasn’t fit for public consumption. Apple could easily check all its software in private but it chooses to use customers as beta testers instead of paying people to provide the service. No wonder Apple managed to make a $11.5 billion (£9.3 billion) profit in the three months ending in June, up 32 per cent from the same period in 2018.
When speaking of Apple’s products, one of the favourite phrases of co-founder Steve Jobs was “it just works”. Well, those days are gone. The latest phone software has taken a sledgehammer to my digital life. And there may be worse to come. There’s a security flaw that allows someone to see my private information without knowing the passcode, even though Apple was warned about this flaw in July. I mean… Argghhh.
I stop to watch Greta Thunberg wipe the floor with world leaders at the United Nations in New York. I should feel choked when she says “You have stolen my dreams and my childhood with your empty words” but I go back to sorting out the chaos on my iPhone. I should not be obsessing about this!
Freud would understand.