The one electronic gadget that has affected my life the most for both good and bad has been the cell phone. If you want to know how to get in touch with someone I know by either their home phone, work phone, cell phone, snail mail or email, look on my cell phone. Oh, wait a minute, don’t forget Facebook or Twitter. You need to know their birthday, anniversary, spouses name or nick name, I got it.
I’m a Blackberry guy. I started with one of those huge bricks. I think they were made by Motorola. When the people I worked for gave it to me I looked at it and thought “What the heck do I need this for?” It came down to that they could get a hold of me whenever they wanted to. I left it in my truck most of the time so I didn’t have to carry it around. Next was the Nokia candy bar. That lasted a long time until they went away from analog.
Then along came the Blackberry Pearl. I could now sync my pc and my cell phone contact list. A Sim card? Who needs it? Before that you had to enter all of your contact information in manually every time you got a new phone, or your phone belched. Now, when I get a new phone, I plug it into my laptop and a few minutes later she’s all loaded up. I switched over to the Blackberry Bold, no problem. I upgraded to the Blackberry Torch, no problem. All my information, my calendar, task list, it was all there. I don’t ever turn mine off. It’s on 24/7/365. As long as I’m awake, you can reach out and touch me.
I remember when I went to work for one company to do outside sales; they issued me a cell phone. I spent a lot of time entering a lot of contact information into it manually. A few years later I gave two week’s notice and they started to rub me the wrong way. My temper got the best of me and I handed them the phone and walked. What did I think of while I pulled out of the parking lot? What am I going to tell my wife? What am I going to do for a paycheck? Nope. All I could think of was all the information in that phone that I now didn’t have access to. Now you can sync them to your own pc and it’s no issue anymore. However, I never use a company cell phone anymore, always my own.
Sometimes being able to be reached anytime isn’t too great and sometimes it’s a blessing. I was riding my bicycle on the coastal trail and I got a call from Dillingham, Alaska, 331 miles away and no road connecting Dillingham to Anchorage. My oldest son was in an accident and was being flown on a medivac flight to Harborview Hospital in Seattle. Quick, get home, book flight and find out where Harborview Hospital is when I get there. If it wasn’t for that cell phone I wouldn’t have received that information for a couple more hours. That was about 10 years ago and my son is fine today and has 4 kids of his own now.
A cell phone can be frustrating too. Poor service areas, dead zones, software glitches, you name it. They’ve all raised my blood pressure some from time to time. I use about 1200 minutes a month. I could tell a lot more stories, good and bad. But, all and all the cell phone has really had an impact on my life, mainly all good.