Apples and Oranges

I’m sitting in my usual café, in front of my laptop, idly sending e-mails and studying Spanish.

I’ve just noticed something.

(My attention span is rather short, so I tend to look up and around a lot when I sit in a café.  I’ve mentioned this before.)

Everyone has laptops.  This is not news, or remotely unusual in this café.  However, everyone but me has an Apple laptop.

I can see nine laptops from where I’m sitting.  All nine are Apple-brand laptops.  I’m using a humble Dell (which has served me pretty well, so I’m quite happy with it).

Now, Apple doesn’t even remotely have a 90% stranglehold on the market share of the laptop industry.  In fact, I believe they are still a pretty clear minority relative to Windows PC’s.

I’ve noticed before that café-dwellers, and young student-type folks in general, tend to lean more heavily towards Apple products than the overall population.  But, I don’t believe I’ve ever found myself using the only PC in the room.  I mean, I’m sure there must be others, but I literally cannot see one from where I’m sitting.

Now, I like Apple products quite a bit.  They’re pretty, and generally do the same things as a PC can.  So, all things being equal I’d at least consider one for myself.  PC’s are much cheaper though, and can be just as pretty if you pick one carefully, so I’m unlikely to have an Apple laptop any time soon.

All these people have one, though.  And, while perhaps a few of them are actually using the Apple’s multimedia features and other fancy stuffs, I bet most are doing exactly what I’m doing: internet, word processing, and random other programs (in my case, a Spanish lesson).

So, that means that most (probably all) of these people have an Apple laptop basically for style points.  I’m not being critical in that analysis — I do plenty of things purely for style points, and I absolutely don’t have a problem with someone buying a laptop with that in mind.  I actually chose my current laptop mostly because I think it’s pretty, so I can hardly criticise anyone on that front.

But, now I feel like the kid in school who’s wearing the uncool sneakers.  I don’t want to be that kid.  I wonder what the folks on an Apple laptop are thinking when they look at my nondescript Dell.  Mine even has a boring black top instead of one of the colourful and exciting (also, somewhat expensive) pastel options.  My uncool sneakers aren’t even an interesting colour.

Café culture is two dozen people sitting in front of laptops with earphones on, quietly ignoring each other and working in their own little bubble.  How did I manage to feel peer pressure, of all things, in such a thoroughly detached environment?  I don’t even know these people.

It’s not fair.  I want the people in the café to like me.  But, I’m wearing the wrong shoes.

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One Comment on “Apples and Oranges”

  1. Jenn Says:


    best commentary on the apple ridiculousness . . . my work gave me a macbook and since, i´ve discovered there is nothing beyond “style” that makes it worth the price. i still use my pc whenever i can . . . i like my uncool sneakers.

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