Whenever I look through one of my multiple boxes and bags of gear that I have accumulated over the years, I am bound to pass by myriad charging cables and rechargeable battery packs – solar or conventional – and, as I do, I feel a wave of elation come over me.
Like many of you, I fear that randomly my gadgets will run out of power – and, to some extent, being without a cell or WiFi signal to keep me tethered to society and social media.
The latter, not as much – but the former is a big one; like “whoa”.
Like feeling phantom vibrations in your pocket or on your wrist from your cell phone and ever-tethering smart watch, we have become conditioned to rely on things that didn’t exist until most of us were adults or teenagers. I mean, we’ve always had electronics in our lives, but I don’t remember stockpiling batteries. Sure, we had a drawer in the kitchen with a few – but nothing like this; nothing like a bin full of wires and a collection of battery packs.
The wires are easy to explain: everything that you buy – that requires power – comes with a wire; which is generally a duplicate of a wire we already have in our collection.
But the rechargeable battery packs? Well, I guess it could be the same reason we always upgrade our phones, televisions, etc. – we are a society who has to have the best of the best?
But those are just excuses.
In all reality – it’s fear that keeps us hanging on to these widgets. The fear that we will find ourselves in some situation where we need to rely on each and every one of these items. Because, you know, a Lightning cable will most likely fail when it senses impending doom. Or a battery pack, that has proved reliable thus far, will just shit the bed – in the middle of this apocalypse that is, seemingly, always on the horizon – but never landing on our front steps.
I liken the whole thing to the Ketchup packets my grandmother used to horde due to a fear of running out of food – triggered by living through two world-wars.
But this fear seems a little slapdash – the fear that my cellphone won’t turn on. The fear that, because I am so conditioned, my mom won’t be able to text me when the ice giants finally take over the planet and steal our souls.
When compared to dying of starvation it all seems a little silly.
(Yes, a Ketchup packet can keep you alive).