Southern Brooklyn

Open Thread: Phones, Phones, Phones


I hate my cell phone. Just about everyone I know hates their cell phone, too.

And, when you’re in the kind of work environment I’m in – fast-paced, digital, mobile – everyone out there expects you to have the sleekest, cutting-edge tech there is.

Except when you’re in the line of work I’m in – journalism – you’re also broke.

So, no, I don’t have an iPhone. I won’t fork over $100+ a month so I can beat Plants v. Zombies for the 82nd time. Besides, I have that on my (3G-less) iPad. I also have an iPod Touch an old friend gave me. So I’ve got enough Apple crap and the phone ain’t gonna add much to it – except fees.

So, back to my cell phone. I’d call it a paperweight, except it’s not really heavy enough when a breeze comes through the window. I really don’t want to call it a phone either, since it’s constantly losing calls and fails to send or receive text messages. If you’ve ever seen me make a phone call, it takes about a minute and a half to unlock the phone, get to my contact list, find the contact, dial the contact, choose whether or not to call using my call screening service, and then, finally, maybe it’ll dial that person. And maybe it’ll keep the call.

Or maybe it’ll just start perceiving phantom commands on the untouched touch-screen.

So, no, I guess I don’t have a phone or a paperweight.I have a rage-inducing klusterfuck from the eighth circle of hell.

Courtesy of Samsung. (“Inspire the World, Create the Future, Annoy the Shit Out of Ned.”)

Do you have a phone you actually like?

Y’know, don’t answer that. I don’t want to hear about it. And I also don’t want that inevitable asshat comment, “You should’ve just gotten a [relevant Apple device here],” which is the comment that always comes about when you say there’s something wrong with your computer, tablet or phone.

So, instead, make me feel a little better: tell me what sucks about your phone.

Comment policy


  1. If only there was some sort of store in Sheepshead Bay where you could perhaps browse and/or purchase a cell phone…

    But to answer your question: my phone sucks because it allows people to contact me. I hate people.

  2. what sucks about my old fashioned, flip up, no text, no cam, no gps, just-makes-calls, several years old phone is: that it makes people feel free to criticize me for not realizing how much better my life would be if I would only upgrade.

    and it sucks that the little tethers have been around long enough that the earlier versions can quite rightly be termed “old fashioned” and a land-line, ancient.

  3. i hate it that people don’t know how awesome my galaxy nexus is, running android jelly bean with a custom kernel

  4. Ned, 
    I couldn’t care less what you say about the phone that you own;  to me, you will always be the most hi-tech-est, late-est, advanced-est, journalist of my community, so to speak.
    That being said, if you like I could donate my twelve year old Motorola.  It evens comes with it’s own bulky charger!  I am generous like that. 

  5. The type of phone I have? Iphone. Only smartphone I ever had, so, I have nothing to compare it to. For someone who laughed at Captain Kirk’s communicator in 1967 (‘come on, this is silly, we’ll never have anything like these in 1000 years’), the smartphone is simply incredible. Even if it drops calls. In fact, I consider dropped calls an advantageous feature (see below).

       I’m here to rant about the cellphone in general. First, the brief positives. Emergencies, of course. There’s a couple of elderly/disabled people in my life that I need to be able to react to at all times. Second, you don’t have to be as careful when making plans to meet someone. Got your signals crossed? Just call, and find out which dope screwed up and where he is.

       Now comes the rant:


        I swear, if I picked up every call, I would have a few people calling me five times a day or more. It’s what they want to do: be connected 24/7 with somebody. Anybody. The cellphone is a dream for such people, they can bother people no matter where or when. Well, they should understand, I don’t begrudge them their right. But that doesn’t mean I’m obligated to become one of them.

       I feel like calling AT&T, to see if I can have dropped calls added as a feature. I’ll pay for it to cut the rambling, aimless calls.

       Sometimes a call drops and the other person doesn’t realize it for 5 minutes. Shows how important I am to the call. Sometimes I actually take the phone off my ear, and hold it down and just walk for a minute while the person is rambling. Some people have laughed. One woman said “I do the same thing”.

       Don’t these people realize that I might actually have something that I’m doing that I really enjoy? Or something important that I just HAVE to do? How did  the cellphone call get elevated to number one in priority? I’m actually having fights with people over this.

       I like the people that keep track.  “Bruce, why didn’t you pick up my call? You picked up Mary’s call on the 28th, Sam’s on the 26th!!!!”

       I think I’ll stop here. Don’t call me. I won’t call you.

  6. FWIW, I ended my two month search for a new phone yesterday immediately after writing this. New phone, new service. So far so good. I give it three weeks before it begins malfunctioning.

  7. Open thread, I’ll do my rude behavior of the week report. Skipped a couple of weeks because I don’t want it to turn me into an angry lunatic (or is it too late), and also, one of the open threads was about the mass murder in Colorado.

       What does it take to admit you’re wrong in Brooklyn? A lot more than the following story apparently:

       I just begin jogging on the boardwalk. A teenager or young adult is riding a bicycle  very slowly diagonally in my direction about to cut me off. He is looking backwards and talking to his friend while riding forward. I’m about to figure out which way to swerve to avoid when he finally sees me and swerves. I say (without sarcasm or anger), “you should be looking forward not backwards”.

       He says to me “you can run around me you know”.  And his friend yells out to me “you’re an a–hole”.  Mind you these were not thuggy looking guys at all.

        Ignoring the 2nd obscene comment for what it is, I”m just amazed at the first guy. Driving forward and looking back and STILL couldn’t bring himself to say “sorry”.  What the heck does it take to admit you’re wrong around here?  Then I thought, hey, there was a person on this blog that was proved totally wrong on a story awhile back, and rather than laugh it off or admit being wrong, he/she stopped posting!!!! Or changed his/her screename, which is hardly better.

       When saying “I was wrong”, “sorry” is so tough that you think it  can bring down your whole psyche, it’s time for some self-examination….

  8. I love my cell phone. It’s full of fun/helpful apps and I’ve discovered Instagram which is also a lot of fun to play around with. 

  9. Just “upgraded” my old ATT flip phone for a new one at Best Buy (Too dumb for a smart phone). I was entitled to a FREE upgrade under a 2 year contarct. Nice FREE flip phone, no problem at best Buy. A week later get my ATT bill with a $36 charge for “upgrade fee”. Called ATT and they said, “Yes it is a FREE upgrade and you get a FREE new phone but there is a $36 upgrade fee”!!!! They eventually reduced it to $18 but I think a nice class suite is in order.  

  10. not gonna help you ned, if you can’t get with the times. and no, you don’t need an iphone to have a decent, working phone

  11. Yesterday, my better half encountered a not-thug teen (more of a suburban fake-punk skate-board brat who are about as dangerous as a housefly stuck in a wad of gum) in Park Slope (ha ha) standing with her pals in a bike lane. A cyclist swerved around them to avoid crashing into them. The teen, a girl, made a flinging gesture at the cyclist and yelled “what the **** is your problem?” presumably for thinking the cyclist was too close for comfort while they stood in the path meant for cyclists.

  12.  “If only there was some sort of store in Sheepshead Bay where you could perhaps browse and/or purchase a cell phone…”

    Hah! That’s awesome. And I’d add a bank from which to draw those funds.

  13. Seriously, another advantage. Less car horns blowing at 6 AM. Now drivers call instead of leaning on their horn, when the family is late to come out to the car going to church. (Or for reform Jews, synagogue.)


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