Pam Webb

a writer's journey as a reader

iphone, uphone, we all phone

English: New Mobile Cell Phone Technology

English: New Mobile Cell Phone Technology (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Feeling like a dinosaur with a jet pack, I have succumbed to family proddings and have joined the iphoniacs. If you can imagine a dinosaur zooming about, then it’s possible to see me, a relic of telecommunications, thumb flipping through countless apps and haphazardly navigating the gateways of iphonese.

I grew up with the ubiquitous black desk phone that only went as far as the cord was long.  I also remember party lines, when heavy breathing only meant your neighbor was listening in on your conversation.  Phone prefixes started out as JU or some other distinctive alpha combo.  Ma Bell ruled the telephone lines.

Then telecommunications became liberated with decommissioning and phones came in colors, styles, and eventually didn’t even possess cords.  Zipping past cordless phones to cell phones,  lands me to about ten years ago with kids learning to drive and living far away on their own.  Staying connected took on relative importance. Caving into signing up with a cell phone carrier took place in a mall kiosk.  How did we ever survive without being available 24/7?

A self-proclaimed gregarious hermit, I am striving to the adjustment of being only a moment away from anyone who desires to reach out and talk to me. I grimace when faced with  “I tried calling you–didn’t you have your phone with you?”  Well, actually no. I didn’t use to haul the phone around while mowing the lawn, or washing the car, or even going shopping.  Now it’s a requirement.

Marlene had it right–I vant to be alone. Alone sometimes involves being alone with my thoughts. The problem is the i in iphone also includes u.

As much of a convenience cellulars have become, I have a real problem with  how society has gone disgracefully downhill in public decorum when it comes to phones.  A recent speaker at our school put it this way, “We have evolved so quickly with technology we haven’t developed proper etiquette.” Pig’s eye.  My momma taught me good public manners and I don’t think they have gone out of style.  I don’t comb my hair in public, nor do I floss in public, and I certainly don’t talk about my latest gynecological report in public.  Yet, I have had to listen to people share all kinds of interesting aspects of their life, simply because the ease of phone technology allows them to talk anywhere and at anytime.  Apparently their phones are smarter than they are.

All this instant, instantaneous communication compunction  is the reason why my choice of reading contain little cellular referencing.  I like books from the days of letters and tea-table conversations versus text bubbles and “can-you-hear-me-now” connections.

Would Jane Austen or Jane Eyre be bemused by the i before u when it comes to talking?  But then again, if everybody is doing it we simply evolve, right?  Then why aren’t there more dinosaurs with jet packs…

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13 thoughts on “iphone, uphone, we all phone

  1. I hear you on this. The voracity in which people use their phones is leaving manners behind. I want to keep my little flip phone as just that, thank you. If I ever get a touch-anything or tablet something, it won’t be connected to a basic telephone. While it’s handy to have everything in one spot, that makes it much harder to get away from every one of its features.

    And don’t get me started on the people who expect you to answer their phone message/text/email within a minute of when it was sent.

    I haven’t seen any dinosaurs with jetpacks around, but I HAVE seen something called a Tea Rex. Perhaps this dino got tired of flying and decided to sit down for one of your period books and a cuppa. XD

    • I miss my slide phone. I received mail through text messages. Perfect. And then my carrier, without warning, said they stopped carrying that feature. Now I pay more for more technology. iphones are handy, yes, but I’m not totally into tech like the rest of the world. I use it reluctantly. Is it too late to return to letter writing?

      • Yes, it might be too late. D= People seem to think putting a stamp on something and waiting for a mail carrier to bring a reply is too much trouble. Woe.
        I, however, love sending and receiving mail. There are a few of us out there.

  2. The I in the Iphone invades my Ilife… nice one

  3. It’s the people who send me messages at midnight and complain that I didn’t reply. I’m ASLEEP!

    • Instant communication has its drawbacks. I have to remind that when my muse hits my recipients might not be amused when I text them. And vice versa. We are not amused at midnite

  4. Oh snap! Would that we were all as witty as you. I enjoyed this very much, and I couldn’t help but chuckle at some of the references to phones gone by. You know how toddlers cover their eyes and think that just because they can’t see you, you can’t see them? The same thing happens to people with phones, except it’s a lot less charming.

    • Oh yeah–that’s why people think they are not noticed–they get into their invisibubble. Well, if we have fashion police we should have bubble police. Or no cell zones like they have no smoking zones. Hah!

  5. Great article. Gave me lots of chuckles on a dreary Monday morning. My wife and I share an old (well, it’s about 7 or 8 years old) Motorola flip-top cellphone, basically for when one of us is on the road or out shopping. All we use it as is a phone. I’ve never sent a text with it and it’s browsing capabilities are not worth thinking about. It’s a pay-as-you-go phone and on average we might spend about $20 a month on it at the most. Unfortunately we may have to get a new phone soon as this one is showing its age ans doesn’t work as well as it used to. Having read your article, I’m glad we’re not alone in our attitude towards the way cellphones are used today. Thanks for brightening up my Monday morning!

  6. My MEPA (most excellent personal assistant) has a vintage flip phone as well, but has surprisingly taken to owning an iphone. No apps, only the news. I’m all about playing checkers, myself.
    Glad you enjoyed the post, and as always, thanks for stopping by!
    Happy Pages,

  7. An outstanding share! I’ve just forwarded this onto a co-worker who has been doing a little homework on this. And he in fact ordered me dinner because I discovered it for him… lol. So allow me to reword this…. Thanks for the meal!! But yeah, thanks for spending time to talk about this subject here on your site.

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