Imagine a world where a seething mass of people line up to ... donate kidneys. Hard to imagine, eh? Or one where a huge crowd of people all clamor to ... volunteer at a soup kitchen. Seeing it? Me neither. Now imagine a writhing mass of  humanity gathered to .. get the latest iPhone. Hey, you don't have to imagine. There are pictures! It happens! Of course it does. Because we live in a world where thousands of people line up to get their hands on the latest electronic gadget. Where cops are called in to keep the peace. Where people actually applaud you when you leave the Apple store like you just discovered the cure for cancer. Sigh. What a world.

The iPhone 5 went on sale at 8 a.m. today in New York and people lined up at least 24 hours in advance. These people probably took the day off work, too. They spent hours in a line when they could be, I don't know, living?

The biggest new change to the iPhone seems to be its new Lightning port. Its what? Yeah, exactly. Can you tell where I was last night? Or rather, where I was not?

It's also slightly larger, which means there's "more room for gaming and media consumption." Hoo boy. Can't you already do that on your computer? And your TV? And your other iPhone? And your iPad?

I think its creepy and sad to line up for anything you can buy. I don't care if it's the latest toy, the coolest sneaker, or the new smartphone. STUFF cannot make you happy, except for maybe a few days. No wonder we're all so miserable, addicted to anti-depressants and booze and food. We're a society that goes cray for a little square piece of metal. It's not the key to personal fulfillment. You're just gonna want the iPhone 6 in a few months.

The iPhone isn't selling apps. It's not selling games. And it's certainly not selling human connection via the actual talking-to-people part of the iPhone. It's selling a dream. Some kind of a weird "This will make me happy" dream. But when you're 80 years old, you won't even remember your iPhone. Trust me, you won't. It's iPhoney.

If only people were as enthusastic about, say, adopting discarded pets or parentless children. Or feeding the homeless. What a different world this would be. Besides, you could have gotten the iPhone in a few days without the wait.

Have you ever lined up to buy a new gadget?


Image via Apple.com