Teenager Misunderstood: Apple’s New Holiday Ad

December 19, 2013

The new Apple commerical has been all over my Twitter feed.

The holiday ad, entitled ‘Misunderstood,’ promotes Apple’s iPhone and AirPlay technology. It portrays a disengaged teenager ignoring his family during Christmas, paying more attention to his phone than anyone around him. 

I can relate. It doesn’t just happen with high schoolers during Club talks and Campaigners. I’m just as guilty as an adolescent.  Last night my wife asked me to stop scrolling through my Instagram feed during our family dinner. I thought I was hiding the phone far enough under the table, but she caught me. I told her I was just trying to get in touch with my ‘inner teenager’ but she didn’t buy it. I got ‘the eye’ so I turned on ‘Do Not Disturb‘ for the next hour. 

This morning was our 4 year old daughter’s preschool Christmas program. I camped out for 2nd row seats and would’ve gotten a sweet video if not for the bouffant hairdo right in front of me. That and the unfortunate message that popped on my phone ten seconds into the first song. “There is not enough available storage to record video.” 

I spent the second half of the song trying to delete footage from our YL Mr. Christmas Tree Pageant so I could have enough storage to film my daughter.  When I finally looked up, it hit me. In all my efforts to capture the moment, I’d missed the moment. 

It reminded me of a conversation I had with my friend Andy, a YL leader in Colorado. Two summers ago he took his Campaigners group on a summer backpacking trip to Beyond Malibu.  I’ve sadly never been to Beyond, so I asked to see his pictures. 

“We didn’t take any.”

I was half in shock, half angry. “That’s supposed to be one of the most beautiful places in the world, and you didn’t take any pictures?  Seriously?”

Beyond Malibu, YL Wilderness Experience

Andy joked, “We’re just a bunch of dudes. We all forgot our cameras. But yeah, seriously, it was nice not having them. It really allowed us to be present and soak it all in.”

It’s a real tension. And I’m torn. I want to have sweet camp videos to show at club, but I want to live the moment more than I want to remember it. 

Here are some more thoughts from Dan Johnson at YLDigital. 

And some from Forbes.com.

And one easy practical solution to the cell phone problem at club & Campaigners. 

Would love to hear your thoughts too. Email me here or comment below. – Drew

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