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A Mother’s Letter to Apple about Macworld Expo

Dear Apple,

Just because you’re old enough to issue a press release doesn’t mean you’re too old to listen to some common sense from your mother. What’s this I hear about how you don’t plan to come to Macworld Expo in 2010? I’ve been reading about it in the tech tabloids, and I’m shocked, just shocked, to hear that you’ve let the suits take over – you were so Bohemian as a child, so free-spirited. Don’t get me wrong, I think it’s marvelous that every Apple employee can afford a pony, and I’m very proud of your Macs and iPods and that new iPhone thing, but you need to act your age.

You are old enough to realize that the world does not revolve around you. Macworld Expo is our family’s annual reunion. You don’t go to reunions because they are convenient, or because they are cheap. You go to reunions because you are a member of the family, and that’s what families do. Yes, Uncle Shawn will be loud and bring a few women wearing latex catsuits. And yes, Cousin Paul will make that guy who runs you – what’s his name? Mobs? I think I saw him on “The Simpsons” – anyway, Cousin Paul will make him stand up in front of everyone and talk about what you’ve been up to this past year. I’m sorry if he doesn’t have much to say this time or he’s not feeling well, but that’s just how it is with family. Oh, and could you tell him that
it’s okay to wear a brighter shirt? Some of us in the back can’t see all that well, and frankly, with times being as they are, more cheerful attire wouldn’t go amiss.

But the most important thing that you need to realize is that Macworld Expo is not all about you. You don’t have to impress us with amazing products and revolutionary technologies each year. Sure, we want you to grow and prosper, but we also love you just the way you are. A family reunion is about the entire family, and there’s no shame in changing your talk to make it about everyone. You’ve been so busy telling us about your newest products and all the money you’ve made that I think you’ve forgotten to share all the wonderful things that other people are doing with your computers. Is NASA using them? Are Macs going into space anytime soon? How are they being used to make the world a better place? Your grandmother wants to know if any
Nobel prize winners are using them, and if they are being used in cancer research.

Now, about how some people think that Apple Stores are like mini family reunions. Your Apple Stores are certainly showplaces. I’d like to see you use more wood and less steel, and that glass staircase in the New York City Soho store is just an accident waiting to happen. But Apple Stores are hardly places where you can sit down and catch up with the Australian cousins. They’re your stores, and you can do what you want with them. But once a year, would it kill you to come to the reunion, where everyone can get together at the same time?

Frankly, you are acting every ounce a spoiled child and you’re hurting people’s feelings. Who do you think made your iPod a success? And your iPhone? Was it strangers? No. It was your Mac family. We were the ones who moved all the iPods into more prominent locations on the shelves in Target. We were the ones who got all our friends hooked on listening to podcasts. And, we were the ones who stuck with you through thick and thin, sometimes even jeopardizing our own careers, while you were mired in indecision and doubt in the late 1990s.

Functional families have reunions and everyone comes if they possibly can. Your deciding not to come isn’t okay, and you should reconsider. Aunt Lesa is in tears, Cousin Andy thinks that if you’re not coming maybe he won’t come either, and some of the more distant relatives are so fed up with your acting like a drama queen that they seem unlikely to support you the next time you hit hard times.

I’m your mother, so I’ll always love you, and I hope you know that if you change your mind on coming to our Macworld Expo family reunion, there will always be a place at the table for you.

Love, Mom

PS: When are you going to come out with an address book that I can share sensibly with your father?

PPS: In case you didn’t write it down, the dates for the 2010 Macworld Expo are January 4th through 8th. There’s nothing wrong with making nice with Cousin Paul between then and now, and I’m sure you can still get a decent hotel room for not too much.

PPPS: You know I only wrote this letter because I love you. Call me soon.

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