Story by Selena Routh
My cell phone has virtually become part of my personal attire. It is with me nearly twenty-four hours per day. Most of the time, it is attached to my hip, other times it is on my bedside table, or next to my computer, or riding on the console of my pickup truck. I love having it available, but I don’t love everything about it. Here are 10 reasons I love to hate my cell phone.
- Dishonest Reception Bars. I look at the little monitor screen, and I can see a full set of bars glowing in the upper left-hand corner. When I try to send a text message or make a call, however, nothing will go through. Later, when the phone rings and I pick it up to see who it is, I can see one faintly glowing bar in that corner. What’s that all about? Are the bars meaningless, or does the phone just try harder when it knows my ex is calling me?
- Dropped Calls. Of course, everyone’s favorite reason to complain about cell phones is the infamous dropped call. There is little to say about it that hasn’t been said alr…
- Dropped Call Indicator-Screech. Okay, dropped calls are bad enough in themselves, but I hate being informed of them by what amounts to the sonic version of an ice pick shoved in my ear. It’s almost made worse by the fact that it is inconsistent. About seventy percent of the time, there is no indication other than dead silence on the line. That’s just enough to lull me into forgetfulness, setting me up for the next surprise screech.
- Battery Charge Games. My cell phone also likes to play little games with the battery charge indicator. On the way out the door in the morning, the battery appears fully charged. By the time I arrive at work, five minutes later, it shows a half-charge. What happened? Did I absorb all of that energy through my hip? Why don’t I feel more energetic?
- Delayed Text Messages. So, what happened to the text message that my wife sent on Thursday afternoon, between then and three a.m. Sunday when it announced its arrival in my phone? Did it stop for the text message version of a coffee break on a communications satellite? What do text messages discuss when they’re hanging around waiting for an inconvenient moment to finish their journeys?
- Nappus Interruptus. At my last calculation, approximately eighty-three percent of my naps are interrupted by a cell phone. I know darn well that it has figured out how to send random texts requesting a call, and to set its own alarm.
- Hide & Seek. After careful consideration, I’ve decided that my cell phone has a self-propulsion unit that was not mentioned in the owner’s manual. In addition to the games it plays with reception and battery charge indicators, it loves to play hide and seek. When it is not attached to my hip, I always take care to place it in an easy to remember location. Yet, each time it rings, a panicky search ensues, until I find that it has crawled under a pile of mail, again.
- Promises Broken. When I acquired my first cell phone, I was promised that it would make me both more efficient and more productive in my work. I’m still waiting.
- The Bill. Have you ever tried to read and interpret a cell phone monthly bill? All I want to know is how much to pay and how it got to be that much. As best I can tell, it got to be that much because somebody threw darts at a numbers grid.
- The Contract. Is there anything more one-sided than a cell phone service contract? It tells you what you are obligated to do for the service provider, and what they are NOT obligated to do for you. It also tells you that they can change the terms in a moment and on a whim, while any changes that you want to make require personal counseling and a new two-year contract.
You may have one or two, or even ten completely different reasons to love to hate your cell phone. These are mine, and I love/hate them dearly.
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