Phoning It In

I was watching the news earlier and they were showing a woman who was 104 years old pushing a cart through the grocery store, and marveling over the fact that at such an advanced age she was still independent enough to handle the weekly shopping duties on her own. I had two thoughts about this:

  • I hope I’m still independent at the age of 104! (Actually, I’ll settle for being alive. Why set my sights any higher?)
  • If I am still alive at 104, I’m going to be pissed if I’m still pushing my own shopping cart through the grocery store. I will consider my life a failure if I’m doing my own shopping at such a ripe old age! That’s what kids are for. Or grandkids. Or younger wives. Tara will only be 96. She can take care of the weekly groceries.

Still, I suppose the story was meant to be inspiring. It just kinda backfired when I saw poor ol’ granny doing all the heavy lifting herself.

Don’t forget the vodka, babe!

Yesterday, we got new phones.

We also switched carriers, ditching Sprint in favor of Verizon. This was Tara’s idea; I’d been a Sprint customer since 2001 – which kinda surprised me, as I don’t even remember having a cellphone that long ago – and never had an issue with them. But Tara had been with Verizon before moving out here, and complained about spotty service and a lack of adequate coverage in certain places. Seeing that she’s going to be the one pushing the grocery cart around when she’s 96, I figured it was best to keep her happy, so I was agreeable to the switch. Nostalgia is overrated anyway, at least when it comes to phone carriers. They’ve all got the same selection of phones from which to choose, and in this day and age when you get to keep the same phone number forever, there’s really not much incentive in staying put.

While going over the paperwork at the Verizon store, our rep informed us that he needed our old account # in order to make the switch. If I’d been smart I would have had this information on me, but I did not, so to obtain it I had to call Sprint customer service. The Verizon guy warned me not to tell them I was leaving, but instead to say I just needed the # “for my records.” But when I called, the woman helping me immediately sensed trouble. She started talking about how much she appreciated my loyalty, and at one point straight up asked me if I was planning to cancel my account and tried to talk me into upgrading to a new plan with more data for less money. I stuck to my guns and denied the whole thing.

It was a pretty awkward phone call, to be honest. Kinda felt like I was breaking up with somebody, which isn’t too far off the mark considering I was ending a 15-year relationship. I wanted to comfort her with that old cliche, It’s not you, it’s me!, but in actuality it was neither her nor me but Tara, so instead I said nothing.

In the end I got the information I needed, and within minutes of assuring Sprint that everything was fine and I wasn’t going anywhere, we were no longer together.

Sometimes, I’m a real heartbreaker. smartphones_rect

Tara and I ended up with new HTC 10 phones, and Audrey got an iPhone 7S (this was our Christmas gift to her). The phones are great, but man, I hate getting new ones because it’s a pain in the ass to set them up. I had an app that allowed me to transfer all my contacts and media from the old phone to the new one, but I had to go back to the Play store and re-download ever single app, and then I had to customize the phone (new theme, organizing folders, adjusting the settings, etc.). Y’all know how it is, I’m sure. The whole process took a good couple of hours. Just once, I would like to own a phone for longer than two years. Their disposability drives me nuts! Sadly, I read that lithium-ion batteries are only good for about two years, and even if we had stuck with Sprint I’d have needed a new phone anyway since my old one started acting wonky. It’s just the nature of the beast, though I suppose you could just buy a new battery and switch that out. Unless the next generation of phones can do amazing things, like cook me dinner or give me a back rub, I’m content with keeping this one for awhile.


10 thoughts on “Phoning It In

  1. Mark, that’s amazing about the woman who is 104!!! From the picture you shared she doesn’t at all look that age. WOW…what an inspiration she is! I hope I look that good (and healthy) if I should make it to 104. Hopefully I’ll be pushing a cart around Trader Joe’s – ha!

    And speaking of getting a new phone, I may be doing that myself soon. I’ve had mine for almost two years and I’m thinking of upgrading to a Samsung phone with more memory. I’m with AT&T and really like their service. My home phone and computer service are with Verizon, and as you know from posts I’ve shared on my blog, I do not like their service or customer service. However, maybe their cell phone service is different.

    Anyway, the best to you with your new phone, my friend! And have a fabulous week!


    1. I hope I’m still shopping at Trader Joe’s when I’m 104, ’cause I gotta tell you, they have the best prices on wine and I’ll be damned if I’m going to stop enjoying that particular nectar of the gods just because I hit the century mark!

      Have yourself a great week, Ron!


  2. Were you able to get a better price plan with Verizon? We’ve always had Sprint and stuck with them, just because their pricing can’t be beat.

    Now, I hope you’re sitting down, because I’ve had my LG slide phone for 6 years. Same battery. I’m holding out with it for as long as possible.


    1. Hard to say. We are paying a little less per month, but at the same time, we have less data. It should still be enough, though. I always liked Sprint’s “everything” plans.

      Your phone experience gives me hope for the future!


  3. I think that if I reach 104 I would want to push my own buggy if only to say ‘yes, my hip does still work, thanks for noticing! Oh and my swagger??? that’s real too and has nothing at all to do with the meds I am on. Wait, who are you again?’

    Liked by 1 person

  4. I have an old people’s cell phone with big buttons. I still hit two numbers at once though. I have it in case cable phone/internet/tv goes out and if get in wreck when driving. Only two people have the number because I use this perfectly wonderful phone on my desk. Why would people want a thing ringing and buzzing in their pocket all the time?


  5. I have an old people’s phone with big buttons . It does not have all that flashy stuff like the things pictured. You make phone calls with it. I got it to keep in the car in case I drive into a ditch. The other use is when Time Warner Cable goes out . Again. Then I can use the cell phone to call them and tell me that the service has gone out. Again. This is important because it verifies that the service has gone out. I could not really know if the service had gone out as it might merely be the roots from the big tree(that has eaten the back bed room) eating the wires underground(that they keep digging up right after the grass seed has sprouted). This is because the real phone which I actually use is on my desk just 19 inches from this key board. I do not carry the cell phone because I cannot understand why people want a thing vibrating, buzzing or ringing in their pocket . I might have a heart attack forgetting it is a phone thing and have a heart attack thinking it was a spider like your had in the shower on the other post. And what’s up with this texting nonsense ? On this here phone on my desk I dial a number and then I communicate by actually hearing the persons voice. I also have personalized stationary, stamps and a fountain pen is case the cable goes out and that thing on the moon for the cell phone goes out for a really really really long time. Am I missing something here ?


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