Friday, July 15, 2011

Broken Phone Blues

I’d like to start this post off by letting everyone know that I’m probably one of the last 7 or 8 people left in the U.S. that doesn’t own a smart phone. I have a cell phone, but it’s a regular ol’ flip phone. I know flip phone to most people sounds like how rotary phone sounds to me but I swear I am caught up with most technologies. I just hadn’t upgraded to a smart phone yet. Though I had been planning on doing it for a little while now. I made definite plans to get a new one when I went home to visit in New Hampshire where there is no sales tax. Quite the advantage when purchasing more expensive products. I’m heading home July 29th, so I figured, “Eh, it’s not too much longer.” I have had my stone tablet of a cell phone for almost 2 years, what’s another few weeks? Well, just the other day I pulled my phone out of my backpack to check and see if I had any messages (which I’m sure I didn’t even) and as I grabbed it, it slipped out of my hand from 3 inches high, tapped onto the carpeted floor, and broke into two pieces. I knew it was on it’s way out, but that was nonsensical! It was literally a 3 inch drop! I think the thing committed suicide. It was such a weak break. I’ve had way cooler broken phone stories. In the toilet, in another toilet, in a friend’s toilet...but a 3 inch drop to a carpeted floor. Weak!

So, my phone’s broken. A friend of mine actually managed to shove the two pieces back together but it didn’t work anymore. Now, I am phoneless. Not for too long, I’m using an old phone and reactivating it until my trip to NH when I buy an up to date phone. My mom’s sending it to me in the mail, but as I wait for it to get here...i’m naked on the telecommunication front. First I’m thinking, “No big deal. I didn’t have a phone the first 16 years of my life. I can last a few days.” Then, I realize that since the age of 16 I have always had a phone. Maybe this will be a little harder. So, obviously most importantly, I can’t make calls to friends as easily. I can use my work phone if I know their number. But not a big deal, I don’t actually call too many people. Then, I think, “Oh no! I can’t text anybody!” But I open up facebook and realize I can just message anybody on there that I would normally text. Problem solved. So what’s the big deal? All my issues are taken care of. What do I even need a cell phone for?

Then, I go to the bathroom for the first time since my phone broke. I do the Ostrich-Lean-Forward in the public bathroom checking for feet. The handicapped stall is open! Perfect! I can stretch out in there! Before you judge, I have never seen a handicapped person on my floor or even in my entire building, so it’s fine. Anyway, I set up shop in the luxury suite and get to work. I reach into my pocket to pull out my phone and it’s not there! What?! How am I supposed to play Tetris? Am I seriously Tetris-less during this entire dump? I had Jamaican Jerk Shack for lunch! What am I supposed to do while I’m in here?! I got nothing! And this is a three game visit! So, I did nothing. I stared at the wall across from me. I counted the tiles on the floor. I counted how many times the guy in the stall next to me cleared his throat. I even created a new holiday in my head! I was thinking January really only has New Year’s Day as a holiday and that’s not even the fun day. New Year’s Eve is the fun day! New Year’s Day usually sucks for people actually. So, I thought, January 16th, Son’s Day. Self explanatory right? Anyway, back to the real issue. I’m dying of boredom in this stall!

I think I’m going to have to become one of those guys who reads the newspaper in the bathroom for a little bit. I think what bothers me most about that is that I have to become one of those guys who reads the newspaper. Come on! Newspaper? I get any news I need off the TV in the elevator ride up my building or on my friends’ facebook statuses. But I need something to do! I wish there were another way to play Tetris in the bathroom, without being creatively disgusting. I started thinking, “Well, what did I used to do in the bathroom before I played Tetris?” I used to play JAMDAT Bowling 2. On my phone. Well, that doesn’t help either. That’s an even harder game to recreate while sitting in a bathroom stall. Now, as if this isn’t bad enough, what am I supposed to do now when some boring person starts trying to have a month-long conversation with me? Pull out my broken phone and pretend I’m getting a call? It doesn’t work if the phone snaps in your hand when you flip it open. Or how about when that homeless guy lays on the sidewalk and lets the parrot eat Cheerios off of his tongue? How am I supposed to pretend I’m texting while taking a picture on a digital camera? Doesn’t work that way.

It’s becoming such an inconvenience. I’m currently on hour 36 of being phoneless while writing this up and I’m already starting to lose my mind. I keep hearing noises that sound like a buzzing. Like my phone is vibrating and I’m getting a text message. I keep flipping that broken piece of junk open only to realize my neighbor just finished a load of laundry. Or to realize there’s a bee close to my ear drum. Or to find out the hard way my roommate farts in his sleep. This leather couch provides for some fantastic acoustics, Bernard. Fall asleep in the right position and you’d swear Louie Armstrong’s blowing his brass. Or there’s the times I swear I feel my phone vibrate in my pants pocket and I snag it out of there and determine that, “Oh, my leg just has a twitch in that exact spot now.” Probably not good. And yes I’ve been keeping my broken, useless phone in my pocket. Is that so weird? I like how it feels in there. It’s comforting. It’s like a security blanket. A security phone. Only it’s not quite a phone since it can’t make calls. It also can’t warm me up so it’s even more useless than a security blanket. But nonetheless, I keep it on me! It feels weird without it there. I’d be unbalanced. I have a system and this is no joke. Right front pocket - cell phone and pack of gum. Left front pocket - chapstick and two pens. Right back pocket - wallet. Left back pocket - miscellaneous. If anything is missing or misplaced, you might as well be telling Rainman to miss “The People’s Court”. It must all be there!

Oh and did I mention my only alarm clock is on my phone? Time to buy a real alarm clock like a grown up. However, I’ve gotten alright at waking up on my own. There is a loud baby next door that yells for his mama for fifteen minutes straight without getting a response. It’s always around ten or so. Works out perfectly. This kid might not have anybody to take care of him but if it wakes me up, why spoil it? I’m kidding, of course. After 15 minutes the mother finally yells and tells him to shut up. She sounds absolutely horrible. But the kid laughs so I don’t interfere. So, I’ve taken up counting tiles with Charlie Babin in the bathroom along with creating holidays to pass the time during unloading hours. I’ve left a dead cell phone in my pocket to keep my balance. I’ve used a screaming baby as a new alarm clock. And I’ve just been using facebook more often since I don’t talk on the phone all that often anyway. I’d say I’m a pretty hardcore adapter. I’m like one of those animals that you can place anywhere in the world and it adapts, turns it’s new surroundings into it’s home and rules that home! What are they called? Oh yeah, Steviegators! Anyway, I’m pretty tough. I’d say I’ve dealt with some rough times these past 36 hours. Kind of makes me feel like I can do anything. But I swear the moment that replacement phone arrives at my doorstep I’m taking it into the bathroom and playing the longest marathon of Tetris ever heard of!


  1. this was awesome.. I felt like i was right in the room listening to you tell the story.and so true that we rely on things now that we never even had a few years ago...dont worry you might be the last of the few to have a flip phone, but i know one person in particular ( no names ) who doesnt have a cell phone... now thats a challenge

  2. hahahaha I don't know what I'd do without my cell phone. I can totally relate to taking a dump at work and whipping out my phone to play a game.