Unleashed

The screen on my phone is shot.

I can’t even swipe to answer a call, never mind send a text or scroll through my instagram.

I’ve only had it for a year (although it is a refurbished model).

Shoddy goods.

But part of me is thinking silly girl.

In December it will be a decade since I started carrying a cell, presumably to stay connected.

A friend marched me to a Bell kiosk after I went MIA for two days following a Christmas party.

I was merely having a quiet weekend at home, which is always nice after a Friday night that goes into Saturday morning.

Up to that point, I didn’t view myself as a likely candidate for a cell phone. I didn’t want a leash, nor did I want to be the idiot in the cereal aisle asking someone at home if I should buy Chex or Apple Jacks.

But apparently I had worried a few people, so I bought a flip-top and learned to text a la T9. A few months later my boyfriend downloaded  “A Boy Named Sue” as my ringtone.

I slept with that phone beside my pillow and woke up to the sound of Johnny Cash saying, “My name is Sue. How do you do? Now you gonna die,” for seven years.

Eventually, that candy apple red flip-top that I never really wanted became more than a communication device. It was a symbol of my identity—if only an emblem of my stubborn refusal to embrace new technology.

I had a phone that worked. Why would I replace it ?

I stand by the logic, but it failed to account for one thing: current technological proficiency is an essential form of literacy in our society.

So I upgraded my phone and my knowledge.

Rinse, lather, repeat.

And here I am with a phone I couldn’t use if I needed to dial 911.

The difference between this phone and that first Samsung I had is that this one is basically a computer, and I already have a computer, so doesn’t that make it redundant?

But Lynda, do you carry your computer with you all the time?

Of course not. Why should I?

Isn’t it enough to keep a means of communication at home? Like when I was growing up and all we had was rotary model on the wall.

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