niina.amniisia » bits, pieces and photos from sydney, australia and elsewhere

swallow your hip (Sunday March 6th, 2005 - 09:50)

category: mmhuh?

Ian McEwan's SaturdayDear Mr McEwan,

I finished reading your latest novel, Saturday, on (would you guess it?) Saturday and I have a small gripe of chronology to point out to you in the Jonathan Cape Cased Edition (ISBN 0-224-07299-4).

On page 191 Henry Perowne says to Daisy:

“The genocide and torture, the mass graves, the security apparatus, the criminal totalitarian state – the iPod generation doesn’t want to know. Let nothing come between them and their ecstasy clubbing and cheap flights and reality TV. But it will, if we do nothing.”

The Saturday in the novel is February 15, 2003 when people across the world, including London, took to the streets in a global anti-war rally. Reality TV had been airing for a few years at that point as had cheap flights, ecstasy had been around even longer, but the little iPod, the white trademark headphones now spotted on any busy street, had hardly infiltrated past early adopters.

If you do a search at BBC News for ipod before 15/2/03 you receive 13 mentions; after 15/2/03 there have been 224 including the launch a few months later of iTunes and the iPod being on Christmas wish-lists at the end of the year. A nearing-50 neurosurgeon who puts everything in to his work and barely shares words with his blues musician son (who from my interpretation of character wouldn’t have bought an iPod for a few more years) is unlikely to have heard of Apple’s device in February 2003.

Mobile phone cameras were picking up in London at that point in time, even the BBC were reporting news with the aid of mobile phone cameras, perhaps that would be a better piece of technology to name drop.

Kind regards,

one comment to “swallow your hip”
Trev (nee Retoxed, nee lostmusic) said on March 6th, 2005 at 12:59 pm:

You tell him Niina. That’s just sloppy research.