March 25, 2018: Phones and Parents

“Texting wasn’t always easy. In my day you had to work for it. You had to want it. You need an S? You better click that 7 button FOUR times!”

-Meme Author Unknown 

My first phone.

I think one of my favorite things to tell my students is that cell phones weren’t REALLY a thing when I was a kid. It’s true, they did exist but really they were more like a cordless house phone. (That was a difficult concept to convey to the kids…I had to show them a picture.) Life without immediate access to a phone is kind of unfathomable to kids these days.

Cell phones were just becoming popular. Quite a few kids in my class were starting to get them. I stuck to the classics the first time around and tried to convince my parents that  needed one because everyone else had one. As I’m sure you’re not surprised, it didn’t work.

I had just recently started driving and had gotten lost when I went to visit a friend in a town, about an hour away (in Eminence, MO). The town is hidden among the tangled branches of the Mark Twain National Forest. There are no strait roads into town and most of them are precariously narrow and curve around the steep edges of cliff and hill faces. When I got home much later than I should have I had a bright idea.

I eventually convinced my folks it was a good idea so they could always get ahold of me, especially important as a new driver. I got my first phone when I was 16. It was one of those super popular Nokia brick models. My parents actually got those cool flip phones.When I asked why they didn’t get the same for me, my mother responded she thought I’d like the Nokia better because it had games on it.

It was a great phone that lasted me at least a couple of months. I accidentally drowned it in grape juice. I know that doesn’t sound like an accidental situation (it took a lot of convincing to prove that was an accident to my mom). My second cellphone came in that same year. It was still a Nokia but this time it was a flip phone with a camera (a fairly new concept) with an SD card insert to store photos on!

Even when I find myself staring at my phone for the zillionth minute. In fact that’s when I hate it the most. I wish we lived in a world where it wasn’t a necessary.It’s funny. To think back on it, I wanted that phone SOOO bad. Now that I’ve had one for the last *cough* years I’d do go back and convince everyone I knew that it was a bad idea. I really hate my phone.

 

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