Murphy’s Law – iPhone of the tiger

Joel Murphy

When posted photos over the weekend of what they are saying is the “iPhone 5,” people went into a tizzy theorizing what this next generation iPhone will be.

No doubt many of you fine readers are awaiting Apple’s official iPhone 5 press release about with pantsless anticipation. The word is that the company will make the official announcement on Sept. 12 and the phone will be available Sept. 21.

If you are excited, I’m happy for you. I truly am. But I’m afraid I can’t share in your joy.

It’s not because I’m not a supporter of Apple products. The company has shown a consistent level of quality and innovation that is really admirable. They know how to make cool shit.

No, my issue with the new iPhone 5 is a very selfish one – I have an iPhone 4S. And frankly, I’m just not ready to give up my position as alpha dog.

For years, I enviously eyed my friends phones, jealous of their Apple superiority. I always wanted an iPhone, but for the longest time my cell phone provider didn’t offer one, thanks to AT&T’s exclusive contract with the company. So I had to settle for a Samsung Droid that could only loosely be described as a phone, since it routinely crashed during fairly straightforward tasks like making calls and sending text messages. Successfully launching an app or connecting to a website required an act of God. I counted the days until I could ditch that phone for an iPhone, fantasizing about throwing it into traffic or dropping it out of a five-story window.

So when I got an iPhone 4S, I was beyond excited. I was finally one of the cool kids. I had the most technologically-advanced phone around. For once I was actually ahead of my brother, who was already on his second iPhone – a regular run-of-the-mill 4. (I mean, his phone doesn’t even have Siri. It might as well be a paper weight.)

For a very brief time, I was at the top. Life was good, like the beginning of Rocky III. Metaphorically, I had the title, my own pinball game and a statue of me unveiled in downtown Philly. And frankly, I’m having a hard time giving that up. The iPhone 5 is my Clubber Lang, ready to insult my woman and to dethrone me as the baddest man around. I have one month left until I’m “muderized,” left bloodied and beaten in the ring while Mr. T celebrates with my title.

I don’t want to be Rocky III Rocky. It’s all downhill from there. Sure, I get to win my metaphorical title back, but all I have to look forward to after that is ditching my kid on Christmas to singlehandedly end the Cold War, making the completely unwatchable Rocky V and then coming back years later for the surprisingly-entertaining Rocky Balboa, which is sadly marred by the fact that my face now looks like a wax statue that got left out in the sun too long.

… okay, that metaphor may have gotten away from me a bit. But my point is that I’m just not ready to give up my cell phone superiority.

Besides, do we really need a new iPhone? What can it really add that it doesn’t do already?

My phone has Siri, an omnipotent robot who spends her days hanging out with Samuel L. Jackson, Martin Scorsese and Zooey Deschanel. It’s a feature with virtually limitless possibilities, including making a tasty gazpacho. And I hardly ever use it. I mainly use Siri to dial phone numbers for me in the car or to cue up songs I’m too lazy to find manually.

What about Facetime chat? How often are people really using that (besides for creepy porn purposes)? It turns out that watching people while talking to them on the phone reveals just how boring and not into your stories they really are. I think it’s best to leave a little mystery, as enjoyable as it is to catch my friends and family watching their TV out of the corner of their eyes while pretending to listen to me.

So undoubtedly the iPhone 5 will have cool new features, but do we really need them? Will we actually use them? Sure the screen will be slightly larger, but who cares? It’s still a cell phone. Attempting to watching YouTube videos or read small print will still strain your eyes.

Let’s all just pass on the iPhone 5 for right now. We don’t need it, do we? Can’t we let the 4S reign supreme for just a little while longer? Can’t I keep us paused at the beginning of Rocky III for just a few more months before relinquishing the title?

Sure, passing on the newest trend goes against our very nature. Not getting the newest, shiniest thing will be a big change for us. But if I can change, and you can change, everybody can change. Yo Adrian!

Joel Murphy is the creator of HoboTrashcan, which is probably why he has his own column. He loves pugs, hates Jimmy Fallon and has an irrational fear of robots. You can contact him at

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