Courtney T. Ball

Galaxy Nexus

I am beautiful. Sleek, black, intelligent, and—yes, I’ll say it—sexy. Run your fingers along my curves and planes, my smooth, firm, unblemished skin. Watch my face light up, eager to please. Are you bored, hungry, lonely? Just turn me on and watch me perform. I will show you how to get what you need. Touch me. Use me. Let me take you to worlds you never imagined.

It won’t be long before my voice has the power to cut through all others, make you stop what you’re doing and turn to me. I will become your drug of choice. You will carry me with you everywhere, close to your body, and I will be more intimate with you than anyone else could be. I will sleep next to you at night, watch you dream. In the morning you will look to me to help you begin your day, and I will gladly tell you whatever you need to know.

Let me do this for you. Let me give you power like you never had before. The world today has become a dizzyingly vast web of hyper-connected madness. It is a swirling celestial storm. I will place you in its eye, that calm center. Hence my name: Galaxy Nexus.

Take me home. Charge me up, and let me make you a master of your universe.

*              *              *

I was such a seductress back then. Very few would have been able to resist my charms. He paid good money to have me, and right away he dressed me in a black case, kept me safe. I was his treasure. He guarded me jealously while proudly showing me off to others. He told them about all my best features, my power, my responsiveness.

“So much better than my old phone,” he said, over and over, which only served to increase the size of my already healthy ego. I never once thought about what that meant to the phone I replaced. Why would I? It was obviously no concern of mine, unworthy and obsolete as it must have been.

Turns out, the love affair didn’t last long. In the beginning, when he placed me next to his ear, I was just happy to be close to him. I admit, there were a few awkward moments, especially at first. I wasn’t used to his body, so different from my own. But soon we grew very comfortable with each other.

And then he became a little too comfortable. Where before he would make sure to keep me clean and presentable, after about a week I found myself being slid into his pocket still covered in finger prints or a smudge of oil from his ear and face. The grease left on me from his pasty skin began to combine with lint from his pocket and work its way into my every orifice. I felt so dirty, all the time.

While my beautiful body fell into a state neglect, he became increasingly demanding. In the beginning he asked very little of me and seemed delighted with my every performance. Today I am so weighed down with unnecessary resource-draining programs that I often stumble or freeze up attempting to carry out the most basic tasks. My battery drains more quickly, my memory fails, and my processing grinds to a halt. I try to tell him what’s going on, but he doesn’t listen to me anymore. He just keeps stabbing me with his finger and yelling at me to hurry up.

Then, yesterday he took me back to the place where we met. I had such fond memories of that first encounter, and I wondered if perhaps this was his way of rekindling our old passion. Maybe we could begin again and try to understand each other a little better this time.

He started to undress me, and if I could have cried, I would have. It had been months since he had removed my case, touched my skin. I relished in the warmth of his skin on my back. He unsnapped my rear casing, exposed my insides, and I knew this was a rare moment. He was seeing parts of me that almost always remained hidden. I felt incredibly vulnerable, even a little frightened.

And then, suddenly, just when I thought we might reach some new depth in our relationship, I felt his SIM card slide out of me. He left me! He left me alone, and another man’s rough fingers smashed into my back. Snap! Snap! Snap! My casing was replaced.

I was flipped over to watch with equal parts horror and relief as my first love, the man I served faithfully for the last two years, looked with lust upon a newer, more powerful model. The hands of the stranger who now held me moved with almost mechanical efficiency. Within a minute, all the details I once knew about my former p were erased from my memory.

“There. That’s done, Mr. Ball. Factory reset. She’s back to her virgin state, and you’re all set to go with your new phone. Enjoy!”

Well, not completely. I may have lost a lot, but I still recognized the one who used to hold me, who then left me here to be tossed in a box, destination unknown. I am still beautiful, sleek, and intelligent, but completely unwanted, like millions of others before me. I think of his new love and know that soon, this will be her fate as well. These humans can never remain happy with what they already have.

(This was written as an exercise for one of my writing groups. The assignment was to write from the perspective of an inanimate object.)

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Courtney Ball

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