I left my phone at home yesterday. Again. Not on purpose. I just forgot to put it in my purse. Which I do fairly often. It never really bothers me.
I'll be on a plane or at a play and they'll make an announcement to turn off all mechanical devices and I'll look in my purse and be a little surprised when the phone's actually there.
Sometimes I even leave it at home on purpose. Not usually for the whole day, but when I run to the store, or walk the dog, or go out to eat.
I think it's a generational thing. My daughters are never without their phones. They're lost without them. If they were at a play and saw they didn't have their phone, they'd probably go back home to get it, or borrow their seatmate's phone to call someone to bring it to them, or panic.
I'm much more casual about it."Oops, I forgot my phone."
It might make a difference if I was expecting important calls or tweets, but I rarely am.
And it might make a difference if my phone did all the things that most phones do these days--like play games, receive emails, take videos, write novels. Mine's a flip phone that only does calls and takes pictures. Or at least I think it takes pictures. I never actually do that.
If you're running for President and making a speech in front of a group that you think is like-minded enough that you can say what's really on your mind, you're going to be safe with me. You'll have dissed 47% of the population before I even figure out if my phone has an audio and video function. That is, of course, if I remembered to bring it.
I think it would make a difference if I grew up thinking everybody was reachable at all times and that I should be too. Which I didn't. And don't. I grew up with land lines and pay phones and being paged at airports.
I was at an airport a couple weeks ago and heard a page, and was immediately on the alert. I wanted to connect with that other person who forgets their phone.
Back in the day, we didn't even have voice mail or answering machines, let alone text. If you called and nobody answered, you didn't much worry about it. You just called back later. The pay phones even gave you your dime back.
These days I have to be a little more careful. Because my daughters worry when I don't answer. Like the time I went shopping after work and didn't take my phone. It was 7:00 p.m., I wasn't home, and my youngest daughter was so worried she started calling people to see if they knew where I was. Even people in different states.
"Hello?!" Is this the same daughter that stayed out all night knowing that I would be waiting up and worrying on the couch?
I thought this was a generational thing too. Moms worry and kids think you shouldn't. It kind of makes me happy to realize that I can get payback by doing nothing other than leaving my phone at home.
I read some articles recently about privacy issues with cell phones. And I couldn't help but remember the days of party lines, when we actually shared phone lines with other people. Families who lived in the country shared with a whole bunch of other folks, each with their own distinctive ring. But if you wanted to listen in on what Ethel down the road was saying all you had to do was quietly pick up the handset.*
*(a handset is the piece of an antique rotary phone that you hold in your hand, speaking into the bottom half while holding the top half to your ear. It's connected to the base by a coiled cord that tangles easily, but that can be untangled by holding the end closest to the base high in the air and letting the handset dangle.)
Just now I read about people camping out at night to get the newest version of a phone that's at least six versions away from the one that I'm perfectly happy with, but could no longer buy because it's extinct.
It kind of makes me feel that I'm a little extinct too.
It kind of makes me want to go and camp out in that line.
If I do, I think I'm going to leave my phone at home. Boy will that make my daughters worry.