Ever since the late spring of 2005, many of my acquaintances between the ages of 16 and 45 have mocked me for maintaining an old-school, fake leather-bound day planner/address book that I carry with me almost everywhere I go. Members of the cool crowd tend to be comfortable with exclusive reliance on their portable electronic devices for the storage of certain data. I generally regard people in the conventionally cool crowd the way I regard their pieces of up-to-date technology – they look good, but I don’t completely trust them.
When the salesman at Sprint (the only large, publicly-traded company that’s never once let me down) handed me my new multimedia phone yesterday, he suggested that I would have to inconvenience myself by visiting an out-of-the-way repair center in order to have my old phone’s contact log transferred into the new phone. I wasn’t surprised by how surprised he looked when I told him about my system - I have the current numbers of everyone I care about backed up in the 1990s-style address book that’s been the subject of so much ridicule. When I was traveling for work last year and stayed with a friend, after she dropped me off at the place where my conference was being held, I realized that I left my phone at her house. If her cell number hadn’t been written down in my special place, I wouldn’t have been able to quickly get ahold of her so she could bring me the phone later that morning - and if I hadn’t had that phone with me during this conference, my day would have been unforgettably derailed.
My computer’s less-than-one-year-old hard drive crashed last week and the great minds at Dell have yet to send the correct replacement equipment. For the past 8 days, I haven’t been able to work on my writing projects or access the Internet from home, and I don’t really care that much anymore. I’ve been writing down and organizing my creative thoughts on paper and 75% of what I use the Internet for is bullshit that I can easily resume from my office computer or the multimedia phone. And with this unexpected free time that’s opened up, I’ve spent the past week taking care of tasks I’ve been putting off for months like shopping for corduroy pants and sports bras, getting a modern-day cell phone, and reading The Vagina Monologues.
As inept as Dell is, I’m pretty confident that this vacation from one of my routines is going to come to an end within the next few days. It was relaxing while it lasted.
The Dictatorship That We Crave
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