I don’t really own a cell phone.  I sort of do.  I have a little $10 flip phone that I carry so my wife or mom can get a hold of me; it’s what you could call a “dumb” phone.  It only makes calls, and doesn’t do that very well.  If I forget the phone at home, I’m not heart broken.

I’ve been lamenting the ever pressing reality that to live without a smart phone in the civilized world is becoming increasingly problematic; almost impossible.  

About two years ago I went to a function with my church.  We were off site, so when we checked our kids into their program were were asked to give our cell phone numbers to a lady at a check in counter.  This was so they could call parents if their children were losing their minds and needed to be tased.  The lady asked me for my cell number:

“You aren’t going to ask me if I have a cell phone?” I asked.

“Um, what?” came the reply.

“A cell phone, you asked for my number.  I don’t have a cell phone number.”

She was dumbfounded.  “And you have kids?  How do you survive?”

“Food and water mostly.” came my reply.

Apparently, even in a church of nearly 2,000 people, we had put zero thought into the possibility that a single one of the parents didn’t have a cell phone.  There was no plan for this in place.  Thankfully she was good on the fly and my children survived for me to tell the tale.

I have a Barnes and Noble membership.  I have to pay $25 per year for this honor, and the benefits are more than worth it for a guy who reads as much as I do.  I receive email coupons that save me quite a bit of money over the course of a year.  At one point I went to purchase a new book, and wanted to use my coupon.  The problem – I didn’t have a printer at the time either.  When I approached the counter to tell the helpful sales associate of my dilemma, that I wanted to use the coupon I was sent but didn’t have a physical copy on me, her reply made me cringe:

“Oh no problem just pull it up on your smart phone and I’ll scan it.”

“What smart phone?” I said.

“What do you mean?” came her reply.

“Which smart phone are you referring to?”

“Um, yours.”

“You sound sure I have one, maybe you can help me locate it.  I wasn’t aware it existed.”

She was puzzled.  By the time I cleared it up, and she got over the extreme shock that she had met her first human that didn’t own a smart phone and gave up on the idea that I had actually traveled here from the turn of the 20th century, she said she would have to consult her manager on how to let me use my coupon.  They had never had this problem before.

Obviously this is all my fault.  I’m archaic.  I’m holding out as long as I can.

A friend of mine sent a picture on “Instagram” (whatever that is) of a date he was on with his wife.  In the picture, she was playing with her phone and completely ignoring him.  The caption read “I must be an interesting date.”  

I was in the restroom at the Red Robin when a guy came in.  He stood at the urinal checking something on his phone the entire time.  We can’t use the bathroom without checking facebook???  I secretly hoped he would drop the phone into the urinal.

Sarah Jessica Parker actually made news for not owning a cell phone.  She said her reason was so that she didn’t have to make up excuses for not returning anyone’s calls.  She could be found on email.  This was news???

I resonate with a friend of mine who owns a phone but almost never gives out the number.  When an acquaintance called him on it, his response was that he owned a cell phone for his own convenience, not theirs.  In other words, my phone is here when I need it, not when you need me.  I don’t pay this stupidly high bill every month so that I can be tracked down by everyone I know at the worst possible times, and then made to feel guilty when I don’t answer your call.  

Let’s not even go into details about the fact that cell phones are killing off the worlds bee population.  It’s true.  Look it up.

Can anyone think of any other time in history when the whole of a population was so linked and dependent to a single thing like we are to cell phones?

I’m sure my day is coming.