Under the supervision of highly tolerant Apple store Geniuses, folks could play with the latest MacBooks, iPods, Shuffles, Airs, iPhones, and iMacs (iPads were still a few months off) for as long as they could stand or lean at the waist-level display tables. Others who brought their own devices siphoned wifi while sitting on the stone bench encircling the store’s Logan’s Run-looking glass elevator.
My favorite stand-up regular was a wild Hispanic man who scoured YouTube for reggaeton booty-shaking videos. None of my business, except that he would watch the clips full-screen on the store’s biggest iMac display, the speaker bass thumping while he ground his hips in the approximate space the dancing women’s butts would have occupied, if the videos were holograms. On a similar theme, I once overheard a young, broke playboy arranging a booty call on one of the iPhones. Speaking above the store’s iTunes-diverse muzak, he told the girl he was just leaving the studio.
In this one store, Jobs had given us a shimmering, utopian welfare state, where even those of us who would have had to sell blood to keep up with the iJoneses at least got to sample the glory. The idea being, I suspect, that we’d happily graduate to Apple loyalists whenever we got our shit together.