One day last winter, I watched in horror as my beloved and ever-so-faithful iPod mini got run over by a car.
But just as I was heading out onto the street, I hit a bump. Pothole maybe, perhaps it was just the fall from the curb. But then I heard a clacking sound as another cyclist who was coming in the opposite direction shouted that something had fallen out of my bag.
I turned around in time for the light to catch the silver outline of the iPod just as the left front tire of a passing car ran right over it. I saw it bounce up and clack back down again on the wet pavement. By the time I realised what was happening, the back tire caught it as well.
I swore, propped my bike up against a lamp-post, ran out into the street, scooped up the iPod, swore some more, thrust the iPod into the jacket pocket I should have stashed it into in the first place, and headed home, all the while contemplating what kind of iPod I should start looking for on eBay. Perhaps a used iPod touch? Or maybe one of the new nanos? Because the way that thing bounced off the road, there was no way it was going to be good for anything more than a paperweight.
But after I got home and told my tale, I took it out of my pocket, touched the click wheel, and I couldn’t believe it. It still worked perfectly. OK, it’s a little scratched up now. The metal casing’s got a nick or two it didn’t have before, and in places it looks like someone hacked away at it with an ice pick, but by some miracle the screen stayed clear and the click wheel – the Mini’s most sensitive part and one most prone to breakage – is still intact.
It’s a good thing it wasn’t an iPhone or iPod Touch. Those things are all screen on one side, and I’m sure they’d never have survived such abuse.
It’s also a good thing it was only a car, and not a cement truck passing by.