A Story by Malati Marlene Shinazy
My cell phone is an important tool. When cell phone developers became smart enough to develop smart phones, I jumped at the first fiscally responsible opportunity to own one (I.e., I didn’t break my zillion year contract and pay my provider a million dollar fee for the opportunity).
Finally, I had a smart phone. My son and I upgraded at the same time, so were on the same steep learning curve. It was his suggestion that developers refer to these devices as smart phones because learning to use them makes us feel… well, rather dumb for awhile.
It took about two weeks to learn the basic functionalities of my smart phone… Then, it started calling people without me touching it. I returned to the reseller store. The smart phone had a problem. They ordered me a new one.
It took an evening to establish settings for Device #2. All was right with the world…. for about two weeks… Suddenly Device #2 got so smart it not only called random numbers, it went on and off by itself. Surely, this one was possessed. Back to the store, whose manger assured me of the rarity of my experience and graciously ordered Device #3.
I got Device #3 functioning quickly. A month passed, then two months… I finally had a Device that worked… Until I dropped my laptop on it and shattered the screen. Device #3 still worked, I just couldn’t see the buttons or keys.
Quite embarrassed, I returned to the store and activated my insurance for Device #4… This operated like a pro — for about two months… It then stopped working altogether: nothing, nada, nullité.
By now, my original smart phone was no longer available. Device #5 was an upgrade. “Not so bad,” I thought, “At least I secured an out-of-cycle upgrade without paying a million dollars.”
How naïve to think Device #5 would last longer than it’s predecessors.
- Bigger? Check.
- Faster? Check.
- Stronger? Check.
- Reliable? Ahh, that would be a loud, NO!
Unceremoniously, I went through Device #6. Its death didn’t even surprise me.
What did surprise me was the scolding I received from the provider when I called to question why Device #7’s charging port wouldn’t hold onto my chargers.
“Silly woman,” chided the customer service rep. “Why’d you wait so long? It’s now out of warranty. You’ll have to return to the store where you purchased the original phone.”
I imagined the voice of Hal, the super computer who takes over the spaceship in the 1968 film, 2001: A Space Odyssey.
“I can see you’re really upset about this.
I honestly think you ought to sit down calmly, take a stress pill, and think things over.”
Upset? Try… Livid!
Device #8 arrived last night. It took 1.3 minutes to get it running.
Eight smart phone devices in 14 months!!
And now we wait for …
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photo by shinazy