Although I had to violate a restraining order, I made a significant breakthrough with my addiction.
Let me explain.
The "restraining order" is self-imposed: I am forbidden to step across the threshold of an Apple Store while carrying a credit card or vast sums of cash.
History is very clear on this. I have visited Apple Stores exactly twice and on both occasions was unable to carry out what I bought. It's true. One of the Apple People, or whatever they're called, had to follow me to my vehicle with a dolly piled high with boxes. Each time. Twice.
On one occasion the Apple Person helping me unload the dolly fell to the pavement, grabbed me by the ankles and sobbed, "Thank you! Thank you! Now I can afford to send my daughter to Baylor!" Geeze, how embarrassing. Now, if he had said UT I would have been cool with that. But, Baylor?
On the other occasion I told myself the big lie, hoping I'd believe it. We're only going in to look, I said to myself.
Just a quick look and out. No touching. Look and go. Look and go. No touching!
Myself gasped! Before we had even opened the tall, glass door we saw her. Sitting demurely on the beechwood counter, glowing but cool in her brushed aluminum skin; so smooth and warm. "Touch me," she invited. "I can't," I thought.
In a trance I drifted across the floor. An Apple Person asked if I needed assistance but his voice trailed off. Obviously, I was way beyond assistance. I settled in front of the G4 PowerBook and felt the heat rising from her crystal clear 15-inch display. Involuntarily my hands settled on her sides and I caressed her smooth exterior. Rounded edges. Recessed ports. She was sharp, but not pointy. Firm, but not flinty.
I had touched.
My heart began to pound. My throat constricted and in a croak I managed to utter, "Do you have this with a gig of memory?"
Secretly, I hoped the answer would be "No" and I could break the spell, yet deep down I hoped the answer would be "Yes" so I could break free of my repression!
"Yes," the Apple Person replied, "we certainly do. Shall I get the Parson?"
"No need," I said, nearly fainting, and I turned to the Apple Person, grabbed him by his shirt collar, pulled him close and disregarding any consideration of close-range garlic breath, whispered into his wincing face, "I have... needs!"
Pulling away the Apple Person staggered back a few steps, straightened his collar, coughed and said quietly, "I understand. Wait just a moment and we'll, uh, satisfy your, um, requirements."
That was a few years ago and we had a beautiful relationship until her "E" key wore out and, well, that was my fault and another story.
So, today I took a big breath, a breath mint and stepped across the threshold of the Apple Store and into Wonderland. My credit card started bouncing around like a ferret in a trash bag but I remained calm.
The iBooks, iMacs, iPods and PowerBooks were on display like the red light district in Amsterdam. Come hither, sailor, they beckoned. But, I calmly strode around like I owned the place, tapped a few keys, and after a few minutes departed the premises, sweating profusely. The ferret quieted down as I moved away from the Apple Store, although he gave a few tugs as we passed the Victoria's Secret store, and all was well.
I made the phone call.
"Hey, I went to the new Apple Store at the First Colony Mall!"
"Uh, huh. And how much did you blow?"
"Nothing. Nuh-THING! Zero. Nada. Zilch. I walked in. I walked out."
"You're sweating profusely and there's a ferret in your back pocket, right?"
"Details, details. But, yes. Guilty as charged, but no charge. So there."
"Well, who's a good boy? It's about time you showed some self-control. I'll be home in a couple of days. Meanwhile, you just go home and drink some gin or something, OK?"
"OK, I said. Hey, maybe I'll blog about it."
"Whatever. Later." click
I turned around to look back at the Apple Store. The silver apple was reflected in the Victoria's Secret Angels bra ad. Silver on pink with feathers.
"Don't you worry, me prettys, Uncle will return. With gifts." The ferret was positively giddy with anticipation.