TopOfTheCircle.com

Serving the scholastic field hockey and lacrosse community since 1998

Oct. 7, 2015 — Of necessity

10% battery remaining.

That message flashed on my screen last Saturday night, just as the field hockey showdown between Newtown Square Episcopal Academy (Pa.) and Hummelstown Lower Dauphin (Pa.) was about ready to go into overtime.

Ever since Apple pushed the latest version of iOS to mobile devices worldwide, I’ve noticed that the battery cycle has been shortened somewhat noticeably. I used to be able to continuously liveblog through the WordPress app for about 2 1/2 hours at a clip, but it’s been somewhat less in recent days.

I pulled out a few of the old battery-saving tricks — dimming the screen a little, turning off all other apps instead of WordPress, and so forth. Now, there’s a setting on the phone which will reduce some functions, such as the automatic push-out of email, refreshing of apps in the background, and the reduction of visual effects, but I wasn’t worried about that (though this may warrant experimentation soon).

Anyway, I looked in the green reporting bag I had slung over my shoulder. I rummaged through the pockets. Digital mini-disc recorder, a dozen discs, a game program from the women’s lacrosse Final Four of two years ago, and a couple of field hockey rosters. In a side pocket, however, was the object of my desire at that moment.

It was a Sony tape recorder with a built-in microphone. And, most important for my purposes, it had a tape and batteries that worked.

I’ll confess something here that you all probably didn’t know before. But it was a tape recorder that probably altered my life’s journey. Had my older brother not gotten me a mini-tape recorder with a built-in plug for my college graduation, I might have taken a job at a company whose CEO was a friend of my father’s.

That company would split into two, whereupon a number of the executives from the new entity would eventually set up a social science organization in the nation’s capitol, trying to solve problems through data and interest inventories of randomly selected people.

But then again, I might not be writing about field hockey had I taken the non-journalism job.

Think about that for a moment.

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