Please do not share this post. Read it and let it go. Thank you.
What a day it’s been.
Hewlett-Packard’s Cupertino campus was shut down on Wednesday while local police searched for a suspect of a multiple homicide still on the run who shot and wounded one of the company’s employees. At least three of Apple’s Cupertino, Calif. campus office buildings were also locked down in the wake of the shooting, Wired.com has learned.
I live near work and ran 3 miles in the morning unaware of this news. At work, we were on high alert. A few hours later, the high alert was relaxed. And then the other bombshell dropped: Steve Jobs dead.
A friend told me about it on chat. Associated Press had outed the news. I assumed their account was hacked (we’ve been through this before). In the following minutes, it was confirmed. I stepped out of my office, as did a couple others. A coworker walked by. None of us said anything. He announced, “Well, we all die,” and continued doing his work.
I might be right when I say folks at Apple share Steve’s view of death: It’s not a big deal; you can’t escape it. But you can live better if you realize this.
[Everyone refers to Steve Jobs as Steve. And Steve refers to only Steve Jobs. I empathize with other Steves on campus.]
The best tribute you can give him is to enjoy what you do — every goddamn second of it — and doing that faster than death can catch up. He’d prefer that to eulogies and posts (like this one). A thousand times over. It’s not a philosophy he invented but it’s something he marketed well — perhaps not intentionally.
I like to believe I’m already doing just that. And I’d be infinitely happier if many others around me did the same.
All said, some beautiful bits of literature are coming from folks who are coping with this news through eulogies. It’s so wonderful to read every new post coming up as to what this news and Steve means to them. I prefer these to the posts that attempt to write about his influence in the world. I don’t think you can do that in a post without overstating or understating it.
Look at this tribute. That’s Apple: clean, neat, simple, minimalistic. The man would approve of it. Heck, he built the company that could do this even without him around.
Incidentally, today was one of the most beautiful days in Silicon Valley. Rainbows, clouds, sunlight, afterglow. All mired though by this sad news and helicopters circling in the sky.
It will take me days to figure out what parts of who I am and how much of those can be attributed to Steve. So I’m just going to leave it at that.