Yesterday, Steve jobs confessed what many of us have sensed for a while: He’s incredibly ill and will not likely last the year.
Does Steve Jobs deserve privacy? Or has his public life been so overwhelming that he has no right to expect to dictate when his life is on-the-record or off? Jobs set himself up to be the Apple Messiah and that makes followers wonder about their investment in a single Jesus and their want to continue to follow him into the Promised Land.
Steve has had a strange year. A year ago he proclaimed reading was dead — and I think that was the first undeniable utterance on the public record that he was not feeling well. Every time he appeared in person, he was scrutinized for signs of life and ongoing indicators of death.
In June 2008, I asked — Is Steve Jobs Dying? — and we now know the answer is, “Yes, rather quickly.”
In my predictions for 2009, I — rather morbidly, some may claim — said Steve Jobs would not make it to 2010. Dying is part of living and Steve Jobs, over the last five years of his life, has dealt more with death than the rest of us. That is no secret.
When Steve did not make a presentation at MacWorld during the first week of January this year, it was clear Jobs was frighteningly ill even though he publicly claimed his body just wasn’t properly processing food.
On January 5, I Tweeted — typo and all — that the Jobs story felt more like a cover up than an excuse:
Steve Jobs is viciously private while wanting to be the center of attention in the public square. For him to confess to any fault in public means the reality behind the reason is 100 times worse than the public statement.
Steve understands any negative revelation about his health will hurt Apple and condemn his family to hurtful headlines — and pompous proclamations like this article — but what Steve Jobs also knows, and can never quite forget, is that sometimes to live is to die and there’s nothing wrong with closing that perfect, mortal, circle even if it means leaving behind a wunderkind legacy slightly tainted by secrecy and just a little marred by disinformation in the basely human want to covet more than forsake.