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On Steve Jobs, Santa Claus and Making Magic


It’s taken me a few days to sort out my thoughts about Steve Jobs.

His death affected me far more than I would have expected and I’ve been trying to work out why. Yes I love my iMac and my Macbook Pro.

And my iPad.

And my iPod.

But even though I love my Apple technology, I haven’t really seen myself as a true Apple fangirl and I’ve given very little thought to Steve Jobs over the years.

And yet I’m crying

That’s why finding my eyes filling with tears reading the obituaries came as a true surprise. Why was I scouring the web looking for more? Why did I feel this sense of real loss over someone I never gave much thought to while he was alive? Why did I feel so damn sad?


And what’s more, why was I not alone in this? The eulogies weren’t limited to tech blogs or the national newspapers. Every website I read commented on the news. Everybody I talked to mentioned it. Many of them were people who don’t even own a single Mac product. And yet there we all were, sharing in a sense of global loss.

“Now I’d Like to Show You Macintosh in Person”

I finally realized what it was while watching a video of a very young Steve Jobs announcing the first Macintosh computer, a machine that was to revolutionize all our lives by introducing the graphical user interface. In the video, Jobs relishes the big reveal, excited like a little child by the chance to show off its powers. And the audience is riveted. Howls and whoops of real excitement greet every special effect and when the machine actually talks, well the entire crowd jumps to its feet. And as they cheer, Jobs tries to keep from crying, his smile as wide as I’ve ever seen it, his pride impossible to miss.

Steve Jobs was Santa Claus

And that’s when it hit me. Steve Jobs was Santa Claus for adults. We don’t get to be surprised very often once we leave childhood. We don’t believe in fairies and magic and men who come down the chimney and leave us exciting presents. But in recent years, some of us had Steve Jobs.

Every few years, we knew he’d come out onto a darkened stage and hold up something brand new – something we couldn’t have even imagined until we saw it, but something we instantly knew would brighten our lives immeasurably. And somehow, even though we had no idea, he knew it was exactly what we’d always wanted, and he was thrilled to share it with us.

The magical new invention was never something we needed. It wouldn’t help do the chores, or cook our meals, or heal us if we got sick. Instead, just like the best childhood Christmas presents, it was all about fun and filled with possibility.

And so with Steve’s passing, we’ve lost a lot more than another rich CEO. We’ve lost our Santa Claus and he’s never coming back.

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About the Author

Louise Fletcher

Louise co-founded Blue Sky in 2002 after a career as an HR executive. Her industry experience includes music, video games, fashion and advertising. She lived and worked in the US for many years, but moved back to her native UK in 2012, where she now lives in the Yorkshire countryside. In addition to her full-time role with Blue Sky, she's a professional artist, so you can imagine why she couldn't answer the 'what do you do with your free time' question! Contact Louise by email.

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5 comments on “On Steve Jobs, Santa Claus and Making Magic”

  1. Sital says:

    Great post Louise. Like you, love my Apple products but not what you’d call an Apple fanboy.

    But I was a fan of Steve Jobs. Wasn’t quite sure why – but now I know. He was the modern day Santa Clause for adults!

    Hope you’re well…

  2. Michelle says:

    Louise, that is one of the most beautiful articles I have read on the passing of Steve Jobs – you absolutely hit the nail on the head as to why so many people are affected by the passing of someone they didn’t even know. Thank you!

  3. Pamela says:

    Hadn’t thought about it that way, but you are absolutely spot-on. Thanks Louise for the wonderful post.

  4. Lou says:

    Excellent perspective!

  5. I remember the day I met you and Phil in NYC and Phil showed me his new iPad. He was definitely as happy as a kid on Christmas morning. Great post!

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