Wednesday, November 30, 2011

"The Agony and the Ecstasy of Steve Jobs"

My friend glowed from a good week at the theater - Cymbeline, Patti LuPone & Mandy Patinkin and Mike Daisey. Mike Daisey? Yes, he loved Daisey's journalisticesque monologue at The Public Theater. So while my friend's lucky theater streak ended that evening at Private Lives at the Music Theatre, I decided to buy a ticket to see Daisey's The Agony and the Ecstasy of Steve Jobs.

Reminiscent of - imagine - the late Chris Farley doing a segment for 60 Minutes, overall, I enjoyed The Agony... as well and take my hat off to Mike Daisey for engaging audiences for approximately 2 uninterrupted hours by simply sitting behind a desk with a glass of water, a black hankie and what looked like handwritten notes which he never referred to.

I left the theater thinking about how our electronic devices are manufactured. Are they made by Foxconn? How many of Foxconn's 400k Chinese workers have jumped to their deaths? Are the devices really made by children as young as 12? Are workers who speak out against substandard conditions blacklisted? Are the same people who make the devices we all seem to love and need not even able to own them? Are the workers force to do the same thing over and over until their hands cripple over in pain?

Mike Daisey's monologue was effective. It left audiences thinking. Hoping that the audience will also act, audience members were provided with the following steps that can be taken:

1) Speak to Apple. [Apple's new CEO's email address was provided]
2) Think differently about upgrading.
3) Connect and educate yourself.
4) Tell others.

Now, the question is - what will we do about it?

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