I was looking at my gold iPhone 5s–which I tend to do–appreciating the gold ring around the newly designed home button. So sleek. So beautiful. So much like…
J.R.R. Tolkien’s One Ring from The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings Trilogy.
Never before has an iPhone’s home button looked like the Ring from Middle Earth. This thought led me to remember Gollum’s appearance while in the presence of the Ring: He holds it in the palm of his hand. He touches it. He caresses it. The Ring knows more about him than Gollum realizes. It knows what it’s doing to Gollum. Of course, we all remember what Gollum calls it.
I was doing the same thing. I’d touch the home button Ring. It knows my finger print and turns on without a pass code. I gaze into it. It learns about me. It knows my name. It collects my information, my location, my voice, the voices of my loved ones… It’s more powerful than I know.
It came to me by UPS. My one. My own. My… Precious!
So I’ve thought of some reasons why my gold iPhone 5s is like The One Ring to Rule Them All:
1. As shown and stated already, it literally has a gold ring on it.
2. As stated already, it knows my voice and collects my information.
3. Like Gollum, I put it in safe places where no one (i.e. my children) can find it when I’m not using it. I put a gold(ish) case on it.
4. When I am using it, I tend to ignore everything around me (not good). I get lost in it. It can be very dangerous indeed to use while driving.
5. In a waiting room, when I’m peering into my Ring–er, iPhone–I become invisible to others and unattached from the spontaneous conversation that could occur.
6. It alerts others of my presence by ringing, vibrating, sending my location to map apps to determine traffic on the road, etc. (Someone it the trilogy is also alerted when a certain Baggins puts the Ring on…)
7. I become panicky and bemused if I’ve misplaced it momentarily. When I find it, I grasp it in thankfulness that it hasn’t left me.
8. In many ways, it has become an extension of me.
9. I sort of stoop downward when looking at it–kind of like Gollum.
10. I spend too much time on it.
11. It’s slowly invading more and more aspects of my life. For example, I use an app with my students’ names to call on them equally in class instead of using sticks or playing cards or notecards with their names.
12. It’s powerful… and these devices seem to be getting more and more powerful.
13. It’s beautifully assembled by Foxconn, although it might as well me crafted in the fires of Mount Doom for all I know.
Thirteen seems to be a good number with which to end.
The phone’s full effect on me (and civilization): To be determined.
2 thoughts on “Gold iPhone 5s = The One Ring”
YES! That was awesome.
I JUST started reading the LOTR again yesterday, starting with the letter Tolkien wrote addressing the various ideas swirling about his motivation. It’s a great read by itself, but in it he discussed the difference between allegory and applicability, and how he detests the former.
Not infrequently have we applied the Ring metaphor to our iPhones… My Precious. Serious application.
That’s really cool that you’re reading the trilogy again. I think this is the perfect time of the year to do so. I’m almost done reading The Hobbit with my classes, and I must admit it has been a lot fun for me. I love Tolkien!