Steve Jobs gave his recent Macworld Expo keynote iCEO speech exactly two years after his first in 1997, when he had just rejoined Apple as its newest leader. In those two years, he’s turned Apple, then a condemned property, into a hot, thriving, profitable company—a feat that all agreed was impossible. If you’ve ever read the classic poem “Casey at the Bat,” you can’t help but notice a few parallels…
A straggling few abandoned ship
For Windows. But the rest
Clung to the hope which springs eternal
In the human breast;
They fantasized that Steve Himself,
Evicted long ago,
Might somehow have a crack at being
But Diesel blew it big time,
And was ousted by the board,
And Gil, with golden parachute,
Abruptly pulled the cord.
And when the dust had lifted,
And they saw what had occurred,
Now Steve was back at Apple’s helm:
The triumph of the nerd!
The media was scornful
As he formed the board anew;
The faithful screamed in protest
As he axed the Newton, too.
And now he’s on the Expo stage,
And now the world awaits,
And now he tells the world he’s made
A deal with William Gates!
“My friends, you know not what you say,”
Began the fabled man,
“I still think Apple can be saved
I’ve got a secret plan!”
Reporters scoffed. They shouted back:
“No matter what you say,
You cannot run a company
Without an MBA!”
The ugly beige of yesteryear
Was next in line to go;
The Power Macs, in shades of blue,
Made Pentiums look slow.
And ads, and games, and USB …
He cleaned up Apple’s house.
Each choice he made was brilliant!
(Well, except the iMac mouse.)
Oh, somewhere in this favored land,
The market share is low,
The red ink’s flowing somewhere,
And somewhere sales are slow.
And somewhere critics slaver,
And somewhere moods are black;
But by God, there’s joy at Apple
Steven Jobs has saved the Mac!
[David Pogue (http://www.davidpogue.com) cowrote Macworld Mac Secrets, fifth edition, and authored The iMac for Dummies (both from IDG Books Worldwide, 1998). This poem originally appeared in the October 1999 issue of Macworld.]