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nightstrikes.peperonity.net

Hail Cell Phones

I realize I’m supposed to be over it, but I still think my cell phone is cool. I know: gadget-wise it’s a little passé. It’s not a palm pilot or a Playstation 2 or some kind of new and expensive portable MP3 Player. But, boy, it sure is cool that you can actually talk to people on that little thing!

I try to be businesslike. I don’t makes calls for no reason. I mean, if you call someone from in front of their house instead of ringing the doorbell, that’s not calling for no reason. You’re avoiding the trouble of getting out of the car. That’s not geekiness, it’s laziness. Right?

Okay, fine, yes, I admit it. I do sometimes call my machine for no reason. I don’t care if I have messages. I certainly don’t return any of my messages. I just like to push the little buttons. But I don’t have a problem. I can quit whenever I want.

I admit to a secret thrill every time my cell phone rings. It’s the same excitement I used to feel every time I got an email, back before the Internet turned to crap. When I got my cell phone I didn’t give out the number, because I didn’t want it going off all the time. Now I wish it’d go off more often, just so I could hear that magical ring (ascending ringing option, volume three, ringing tone "polite", vibration on).

And, even though it never rings, how am I supposed to resist fiddling with it? My cell phone has so many parameters and options and variables. It’s got a microprocessor and a battery and a little screen and menus and submenus… it needs to be optimized! What am I supposed to do? Ignore all that technology? That seems irresponsible. Possibly dangerous!

There’s a game on my cell phone but it’s almost redundant. Sure, I’ve played Snake, but it’s more fun to fiddle with the rings (maybe I should try beep once ringing option, volume 4, ringing tone "persuasion", vibration off), or make sure the keyguard is on or, yes, call home and check my messages. Or I could go buy one of those earpiece microphones, so people wouldn’t know whether I was talking to them or on the phone. Fun!

Sociologists have worried that technology will turn us into a society of recluses, glued to our TV sets and our home computers. But I don’t think they have to worry. No matter how seductive big-screen TVs and home entertainment systems become in the future, people are always going to leave home from time to time. How else will they play with their cell phones?


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