"It's rare that you see an artist in his 30s or 40s able to really contribute something amazing,"
Jobs said wistfully to the writer David Sheff,
who published a long and intimate interview in Playboy the month he turned thirty.
"Of course, there are some people who are innately curious,
forever little kids in their awe of life, but they're rare."
The interview touched on many subjects,
but Jobs's most poignant ruminations were about growing old and facing the future:
Your thoughts construct patterns like scaffolding in your mind.
You are really etching chemical patterns.
In most cases, people get stuck in those patterns,
just like grooves in a record, and they never get out of them.
I'll always stay connected with Apple.
I hope that throughout my life
I'll sort of have the thread of my life and the thread of Apple weave in and out of each other, like a tapestry.
There may be a few years when I'm not there, but I'll always come back.
If you want to live your life in a creative way, as an artist, you have to not look back too much.
You have to be willing to take whatever you've done and whoever you were and throw them away.
The more the outside world tries to reinforce an image of you,
the harder it is to continue to be an artist,
which is why a lot of times, artists have to say,
"Bye. I have to go. I'm going crazy and I'm getting out of here."
And they go and hibernate somewhere. Maybe later they re-emerge a little differently.
With each of those statements, Jobs seemed to have a premonition that his life would soon be changing.
Perhaps the thread of his life would indeed weave in and out of the thread of Apple's.
Perhaps it was time to throw away some of what he had been.
Perhaps it was time to say "Bye, I have to go," and then reemerge later, thinking differently.