Neman: In a twist, Apple takes a bite out of me | Business columnists

Our computer had broken. It was no more. It had ceased to be. It had expired and gone to meet its maker, who I am pretty sure was Steve Jobs. It was an ex-computer.

It had served us well for 11 years, which basically made it the computer equivalent of Methuselah. But the time had come to get a new one, and that meant going to an Apple store.

Apple stores make me nervous. They remind me of that commercial the company ran in 1984 to announce the introduction of the Macintosh: It compared IBM computers and Microsoft to a dystopian society ruled by Big Brother.

Times change, and now I sense that same conformist cult vibe from the Apple store itself. Resistance, the employees and customers seem to be saying, is futile.

But none of that matters when you need a new computer and you happen to like Apple. After all, they last 11 years.