foley's wit

Foley's other column on cell phones, Caller ID, etc.
Nov 02, 2006

Hey Jailbreak, how about another Haiku?
Oct 24, 2006

My graffiti column
Oct 19, 2006

Barry Bonds, what else?
Apr 05, 2006

Our Lady Peace's new album
Sep 08, 2005



Foley's other column on cell phones, Caller ID, etc.

Being a single successful guy (OK, that’s not true, women tend to ignore me now more than ever and I’m dirt poor), I have a lot of time to think things over. Ever wonder how people managed to get by prior to the caller identification and cell phone days? Remember the days before caller ID or your Motorola RAZR V3 Silver with an integrated digital VGA camera of polyphonic speaker and downloadable ringtones? Man, I sure do. The phone would ring at 5:02 p.m. on a Tuesday and my family would be eating leftover pork roast right after ‘Benson’ was on CBS and my brother would look at me, I’d look at my mom and she’d look at my dad, who would say, “It’s just a telemarketer, don’t answer it.” My dad, I always thought he spearheaded the entire caller ID phenomenon. He could just tell by the time of day and somehow, miraculously, the tone of the ring when it was someone he did or didn’t want to talk to. Say though if the phone rang at 10:57 p.m. on a Saturday and I — being a 16 year-old out on the town — was still not home with his 1987 Toyota pick-up before curfew, he always, ALWAYS knew who it was and I can tell you it wasn’t someone asking him if he’d take a dishwashing detergent market survey. Caller ID may be the greatest invention to modern man since the Styrofoam cooler. I like it when the ID says “Wyoming call” or “Unavailable call.” I’ll answer the phone whenever someone from another state is calling because I like to find out what the weather’s like in another part of our country, or if they have an accent, or if they have a professional hockey team or if they still have Hardee’s restaurant chains. Unavailable calls I usually don’t answer. If they’re unavailable, and I’m certainly available, it just doesn’t seem like a good match. Plus, I wouldn’t want to create any problems with their significant other, who’s call would probably also show up as unavailable. Then we might possibly have a three-way calling love triangle develop. So please don’t call me if you’re going to show up as unavailable. I don’t need that in my life right now. Cell phones are pretty convenient, but I think some people take the whole technology of them a little too far. Really, who needs to download 14 different ringtones and have certain rings for different callers? Do people really pay for these songs? Games too? I guess if I had the extra cash, which I don’t because you know where I work, I’d probably have Men at Work’s “Who can it be now?” as my ringtone because that’s what I’m thinking every time it rings. ‘Wow, who’s calling me at 2:30 a.m. on a Wednesday, who can that be?,’ I’ll be thinking to myself. Then I’d pick up and it would be someone asking for a guy named Mitch and I’d be disappointed. My cell phone has a camera on it. That’s really pointless to have on a phone if you ask me. I’ve used it to take picture’s of my dog, my ex-girlfriend (now deleted), a lighthouse in Cheboygan and that Delorean that was parked in front of Lakeshore Tire all summer, but really, why do I need a camera? That’s like putting together a high definition television that also has an MP3 player on the side. I have enough problems dealing with one type of technology, so why double them up and make me more confused than I already am. When I want to listen to ‘Hall and Oates Greatest Hits’, I certainly won’t be watching re-runs of Hogan’s Heros at the same time. I say let’s simplify things. I think some people also get cell phone envy. You’re just not as cool in the narrow mind of some if you don’t have a flip phone with optimized keyboard like the BlackBerry or the Nokia 9300. I can just imagine some conversions now, ‘Man, you’re still using that old Noika 1500 model, please? Is that thing analog? You can’t even text message with that thing? When did you buy that, 1989? Wasn’t that the cell phone Zach Morris had on Saved By the Bell?’ It’s interesting as well to see a group of people together at a bar or restaurant and each person is sitting at a table with their phone strategically placed in front of them, periodically checking to see if they’ve missed a call or got a text message. Please, can you go more than 10 minutes without looking? If I were at that table, I’d be thinking they’re just using me for a while and hoping someone more interesting with a cooler cell phone will call them later so they have an excuse to leave. ‘Yeah, I’m with Steve right now at Garfield’s, but there’s not much going on, where you at? I’ll come meet you.’ Then they’d meet up someplace else and sit together and pull out their cell phones and look at them again, but just in a different setting. It’s a vicious cycle. Call me old fashioned or whatever you want, but I miss the days before the cell phone when you wanted to meet someone you were shopping with out front of Wal-Mart, you’d just go find them in aisle 12 rather than call them. Well, I guess it’s OK to call them if you’re really that close, at least you won’t get charged for roaming. I’m different though, I like roaming. Roaming around Wal-Mart without a cell phone. Steve Foley is a News-Review sports writer who may be contacted at 439-9343 or

comments (3) 11-02-2006

The People's Comments:

I'm still laughing over the Hall and Oates reference. Now I'm waiting for the Dwight Yoakam and Our Lady Peace mentions.

Wait, you openly admit to entering Wal-Mart in a Petoskey paper? Is it too late to change that to "the basement of MacLean and Eakin's on Lake Street"? If you even hint to the good people of Petoskey that you have been anywhere near Wally World, you could get lynched.

Hey man... my g/f keeps a tight leash on me. I have to always check my phone so I don't get beat *snif* *snif*

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