I think my blackberry is secretly trying to take over my life. Fortunately I’m happy to let it do so as it’s organizing it better than I was. Linked to my four email accounts; it also sends me twitter updates, text messages, pin to pin messages (exclusive to blackberries), GPS positioning, google maps to get me where I need to go, plus it links me directly to the internet on demand (because sometimes you NEED to know the name of the black guy from the first Degrassi Junior High show. Especially when you’re out at a party and you think it’s him. It was.) Also linked to my blogs, I can write for either while on the go and send it directly to that particular blogs’ draft page. Cool. The best feature, hands down, is that it now links my Facebook account to my calendar and updates me on friends’ birthdays and events and automatically puts them into my appointment book whether I want it to or not. I’m hoping that if I can teach it to automatically send out happy birthday texts and write my blogs for me then I may never have to think for myself again.
Although I may not know what’s happening with Alberta’s oil sands (and I think I probably should) with a glance at my blackberry I can easily tell you the weather in Vancouver (Surprise! its raining!) and what party Jill* is going to hit up this weekend. (*Jill’s name has been changed to protect the not so innocent, meaning me, since I will probably be right there with her, woo!)
As a person who would literally die without my ‘berry (it’s the Bold 2 baby! And if you don’t understand what that means – look it up) people without cell phones worry me. How do you live not knowing what your family and friends are doing at every pinnacle moment throughout their day? How do you leave your homes (where I assume you have one of those antiquated land lines) knowing that for the duration of your commute to work, to play or to your secret double life you will be totally and completely out of contact? Literally, you’ll be technologically dead to the rest of the world (and by world I mean me).
I once left my blackberry at home, hopped on the train and off I went to work; blissfully unaware of the communication black hole I was about to enter. My therapist and I now refer to that day as ‘Dark Tuesday’ and we’re still working through the resulting trauma. Using regressive memory techniques, we have pieced together a tentative storyline from that fateful morning. As far as we can tell, and the security tapes from the train operators have certainly helped: I took a seat on the train, reached into my purse to pull out my trusty cell….and came up empty. Now the rest is pure speculation and the security tapes aren’t clear on this but I may or may not have accused the other passengers of stealing it and collars may or may not have been grabbed leading to punches that may or may not have been thrown followed by me theoretically yelling for the train to be turned around and ending in security hypothetically removing me from the train where I may or may not have been kicking and screaming something about “needing to know what Shilo dapup was up to”. Like I said, total speculation and hearsay of course. Nothing my lawyer can’t handle.
I eventually arrived at the day job and luckily it’s in the cellular industry so I was able to get a cell phone fix at work to get me through the rest of the day. Phew! Much needed and further tragedy was safely averted (however the court case is still pending). Even to this day I get shivers just thinking about it. Brrrrr.
So how DO you live non-technologically in a technological world? The answer is simple: don’t. An important notice to all of you non-cell phone people: Stop fighting it. Just sit back and let the gentle radio waves of technology wash all over you. If you’re worried about those pesky brain cancers that you keep hearing rumours about (all false by the way), stop worrying. Or think of it this way – by the time you do get your cellular tumour (40+ years from now), they’ll probably already have a cure for it! Yay! So go out to your nearest wireless retailer (preferably a Bell store of course, ahem) and join us. Become one of us. Because I need to read that forward you got via email that you think is so funny, I need to know when you walk your dog, what kind of wine you drank too much of with dinner last night, and if you are or aren’t in a relationship and most importantly – if that relationship is ‘complicated’ (and by complicated I assume you mean he’s a merman and you haven’t quite figured out all the mechanics of that as yet). Fill us in. Let us know. In this new era, information that was once viewed as mundane, now in the hands of Facebook has been turned into news worthy of a feed and your random thoughts and speculations are slowly replacing hard evidence and facts. Soon, newsworthy shows like CNN will be quoting the random thoughts of individuals on facebook or even twitter. Doesn’t that excite you?
ATTENTION: If you are a person ‘happily’ living without a cellular device and have serious issues with any statements I made above, please feel free to write me a note and I will ‘happily’ issue a big public apology, retract my previous statements and also send you a sizable cheque to ease your pain and suffering. However, due to some outstanding legal issues and timing problems I’ll only be able to accept your note to me in one particular format:
Via text message.
Fun Cellular Facts:
– Turkey, population 73 million, has approximately 63 million mobile phones in use
– Each every year in Australia more than 200,000 mobile phones are reported lost or stolen. This equates to 4000 each week or one mobile phone handset every three minutes. (http://www.amta.org.au/pages/amta/Mobile.Security.Statistics.and.Quick.Facts)
– More than half the world’s population has made a cell phone call and there are more than 2 billion cell phones in use (http://didyouknow.org/fastfacts/statistics.htm)
– If you find yourself out of the coverage area of your mobile network and there is an emergency, dial 112 and the mobile will search any existing network to establish the emergency number for you and interestingly this number 112 can be dialled even while the keypad is locked. (http://www.cellhandsets.com/2009/04/27/interesting-cell-phone-facts)
– In 2007, Europe had a mobile penetration rate of 110%. This means that a chunk of the population has MORE than one cellular device per person (http://www.itu.int/ITU-D/ict/statistics/ict/index.html)Text message image – source