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Thursday, March 28, 2013

The I-Groan, Part 2

By Jody Worsham

All rights reserved to learn Indian Smoke Signals

I was beginning my second minute of lecturing on the virtues of taking notes on paper versus electronic devices at the AT&T store, when the eleven-year-old rolled her eyes completely out of sight. That signified total shutdown from listening to anything else I had to say.  I have seen this before many times.  I don’t think Alex, the AT&T employee who was helping me, had.  He was making the sign of the cross, even though I was sure he was Baptist, and dialing 1-800-CALL-An-EXORCIST.   I stopped talking and her eyes came back into view just before he hit dial.  The color came back to Alex’s face and we continued.  I completed my notes, paid for the phone, and we left.  Alex held the door open calling out “God Bless”.   I am sure we will be on every prayer list in town by Sunday, both for her sake and mine.

That afternoon with I-Phone, charger, adaptor, and notes in hand, we loaded up the children, packed the RV and headed for our favorite camping spot.  I decided to try out the new I-Phone on the way.  Now, just so you know, we have a family plan of 700 roll over minutes of which I used 5 last month so I basically have to review my notes every time I answer any cell phone.  

I had already learned how to translate toddler gibberish, speak fluent two-year-old, and decipher every nuance of eye rolling before the first six children were in high school.  I was tri-lingual before these last two were even born. The children never bothered to learn even rudimentary “Senior”.  We were destined to have a failure to communicate.

“I think I will try out my new I-phone and call my sister and tell her we are on our way,” I confidently said.

“You might want to practice first,” said Miss Eleven-Year-Old-Know-it-All, between the sounds of her texting, the whirling sounds of sending, and the beeping notifications of receiving on her cell phone.  “I’ll call you.”

I was waiting for my phone to “ring”.  Instead, it shocked me and I dropped it.

“You’ve got it on vibrate.  Do you want it to vibrate?”

“No, I want it to ring.  I don’t want an electric shock in my hands or my pants.”

“Which ring tone do you want?  You can have a ring tone that is different for each person?  Do you want separate ring tones for just our immediate family?”

“Ten ring tones?  How will I ever remember ten ring tones much less which tone is for which family member?”

“You can put a picture of the person calling you so you will know who it is.  Here, I’ll put my picture so it will come up when I am calling you.”

“Couldn’t I just say ‘Hello, who is this?”

“Fine,” eyes rolling toward the ceiling.  “Here is a high pitched ring that you are sure to hear.”

My phone rang.  The sound of an alien spaceship circling our car sounded, the dog began to howl, and the eleven-year-old’s picture appeared on my I-phone screen.

“Answer it!” my husband yelled above the howling dog and the sounds of the alien space ship trying to land. 

“How?” I queried?

“Slide the bar at the bottom and tap on the number.  Here let me” came from Miss Queen of the I-Phone.

“No, if you do it I will never learn.  Now where is the bar?” I said scanning the tiny screen.

“I don’t know but I’m looking for one” came from my dear tee-totaler Hubby as he swerved the truck from side to side. “Just answer the phone so the dog will stop howling and the space ship can land.”

“Hello?  Who is this?”

“It’s me. Look at the picture.   I’m right behind you.”

“Ok, I think I have that.  Slide, tap, say hello.  Got it.  Now how do I text?”

“Well to text, you tap the green oval at the top, type in the address from your contact list, type your message, then hit send.  If you are texting and someone is calling you, you can tap accept, reject….”

“STOP.  Don’t give me so many options.  Speak slower, not louder.  You aren’t making any sense…”

My husband reached for his cell phone.  “9-1-1?  What is my emergency?  Are you kidding?  I’m in a four passenger pick-up truck with a Shih Tzu, a seven-year-old and an eleven-year-old who do not speak ‘Senior”, a phone that E.T. tried to call home on, a wife who can’t see a bar when it is right in front of her and it’s an hour and a half to our destination.”

“Yes, sir.  Stay calm.  Alex notified us. There is an I-Phone Crisis Counselor about a mile behind you.  He has been following you since your wife left the store.  He is a certified Instructor for I-Phone 4 and he is fluent in “Senior”.  I’ll stay on the line until he catches up with you.”

My husband pulled the truck, trailer, two kids, one dog, and three cell phones safely to the shoulder of the road and waited for the I-Phone Crisis Counselor to catch up to us.

As the I-Phone Counselor spoke to me slowly, using simple one syllable words, I said to myself:

“Who needs a cell phone anyway?  Maybe I’ll just send out smoke signals.   There’s plenty coming from my ears right now.”

1 comment:

Joanne Noragon said...

Learning the damn smart phone was harder than my masters exams. I have exactly four functions under my belt: phone, text, calendar, navigate. Believe it or not, calendar is my favorite; too many kids to schlep too many places.