I don't want to make it a huge deal but I got an iPad, cue the applause. No? OK.
I have been putting off this purchase since the start of college because I felt that I needed to do something to "deserve" it, whatever that meant but I decided to YOLO it and here I am, happier than I've ever been.
I realize this makes me sound materialistic but whatever, now I am happier now so yes, maybe I am a little materialistic.
The iPad is perfect for the always-on-the-go lifestyle of a college student. I feel that my backpack has become so much lighter with this device.
With automatic backup to the Cloud, anything stored on the iPad can be saved on Apple's network and can be accessed from any device with an Internet connection; all those invaluable class notes and papers you typed will be saved and accessible online which is something that I really care about because an essay of mine deleted itself and I still have nightmares about that.
With how much I am praising their device, Apple should really hire me already.
Anyways, carrying on with the advantages, an iPad can snap a photo of a document, convert it to a PDF and email it faster than your campus copy machine ever could.
Apart from all these advantages and just how cool it looks, I do understand people who say that they don't think an iPad is worth it. That used to be me for a long time and I agree that it is not the device for everyone.
I'm not writing this article to tell you to buy an iPad. In fact, the opposite really. Sure, my iPad makes me happy and genuinely excited to go to class and take notes (I know right!?) but that's not what the iPad represents. For me, getting this iPad was a personal milestone because, for such a long time, I made myself refuse to buy it because I felt that I needed to become a perfect student - get perfect grades effortlessly and be productive always - to be able to even think about getting it.
It is a state that is experienced by every college student: the mentality is to hustle always 24/7 and if you aren't, you are lazy and not going to get that dream job and salary. We feel that we need to be working for things to deserve them otherwise we are unworthy of things that make us happy and content.
Ina P. said that "Perfection was the only possibility, anything else was failure" in her article "Capitalism Makes Me Sick" and I relate completely. It is the capitalist view that has poisoned all of us to think that we need to be perfect and grateful that we don't have it worse. Asking for something more than we "deserve" is not even a consideration we think about anymore.
I promised myself that I would get an iPad if I got the best grades and genuinely did something that I considered productive which was a high bar that kept on getting higher every time I came close to reaching it. So I worked harder, thinking it all might come true someday if I just tried one more time, did it better, put more into it. I was still entranced in the formula of capitalism: if you work hard enough you will earn happiness.
And then, for the first time in my life, I just let go. I stopped struggling against it. I stopped worrying about what it would mean with "treating myself." No more sacrificing to be part of the system, or to reform the system, or even to fight it.
We set aside our own selves and our dreams in a futile attempt to become people of value. We don't realize that we already are from the moment we're born.
We kill ourselves to achieve what is unachievable and blame ourselves and each other for failing.
So yes, to me, getting this iPad is not just about the advantages that it gives (which are numerous) but the fact that when I made this decision, it is in some small way trying to break the systematic process of capitalism.
Or maybe I just really wanted an iPad.