Sunday, January 15, 2012

This Explains All The Unanswered Texts

Oh god scanning things takes so long.

But yeah, let's talk about cellphones for a second.

Way back when, I refused to even use a cellphone. I thought they were stupid. I thought anyone who used a cellphone was stupid. Somehow, using complex mental gymnastics, I even thought the brilliant dudes who invented cellphones were stupid. But in a twist of Shyamalanic proportions, the stupid one...was me.

Regardless. Fast forward to now. I have a cellphone, I love my cellphone, I use my cellphone constantly. Me from 2005 couldn't conceive of playing scrabble on your phone. Any moment there's downtime I'm all up in my phone's grill, googlin' and textin' and flingin' ill-tempered birds. Every single barista at my store is the same way every single barista in the universe is the same way. And while my previous location was a soul-devouring hell from which I thought I'd never escape, we at least got away with the occasional glance at the iPhone on the floor.

Not so now. I actually like my current location, but we've cracked down on phones quite a bit. The rule is simple and effective: keep it in your jacket, or it goes in the safe.

"Wah wah wah, Jim," you're saying. "Cry me a river and then build me a bridge and get over it, then get hurt crossing the bridge so you have to call a wahmbulance." And you're playing the world's tiniest violin.

Wave away the first world problems fog a moment, and do this for me: Pretend you work at a cafe. Now pretend you've done every conceivable task in the universe. The daily tasks, the weekly tasks, the yearly tasks. The store sits empty. It's two days after Christmas, everyone who can afford three lattes a day is off skiing, and you cannot leave this space for four more hours.

All you have to distract you from your boredom is the inevitable screeching of these goddamn things. And ten paces away, tucked inside your jacket, sits a magical tool. A magical tool that plays scrabble. That's like putting a starving man at a full table and telling him he can't eat anything until the restaurant's closed.

Jess doesn't look too thrilled on this postcard, as indicated by the multiple frowny faces. I particularly like the crossing out of "small" in favor of "isolated." I'm picturing her hunched over a rickety counter--tumbleweeds blowing by outside, natch--scribbling frownies while a puzzled postal worker looks on.

How isolated, Jess? Is it a geographical oddity?

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