Phone Fail

No Telling


Maybe I’m making this harder than it has to be. I’m not sure exactly how long should I read the book and fiddle with the touch screen of a new cell phone before I give up. The learning curve between the Sorry Cell Phone I had and the shiny new electronic wonder beside me now may just be a little much – like walking out of a Math for General Ed course right into Calculus. It’s not an exaggeration.

I think I’m flunking Cell Phone.

The thing intimidates me. It’s crouching here on my desk in all its Samsung Omnia sleekness, taunting me, making me feel unbelievably stupid. Oh, it takes fabulous pictures – I figured that out first thing – and even sends them to my email. I got that part down, easy. It’s just a nightmare to answer a call. In fact, I’ve not been able to pick up a call yet.

I spent three hours last night attempting to return four phone calls and I don’t think success ever happened the same way twice. There was one texting attempt, but I mistakenly texted a person who also can’t work their phone. Neither of us may ever know if that message went through.

It’s time to screw my courage to the sticking place and learn this thing. I’m putting a limit on it, though, because using a phone shouldn’t require a PHD. If I can’t figure out how to pick up and make call by this afternoon, I’ll graciously admit defeat and take the damn thing back to Verizon for something with a little less abracadabra.

Meanwhile, Em is thumb-spinning away on her new rig as if it were a natural extension of her hand. Gen-Y whippersnapper.

24 thoughts on “Phone Fail

  1. You'll get it. I never look at the book right away, i usually save that for later when something comes up that i have not figured out yet. I think you should just keep using it and playing around with it (even if your calling every number in your contact list by accident and lose a few friends down the road) You will get it eventually just by fiddling with it. Later on every so often you can look at the manual for reference. Cell phone manuals are perfect toilet-time reference. . .
    I have no experience with Samsung phones, but my Blackberry Storm was a breeze to figure out and use.

  2. “It's time to screw my courage to the sticking place and learn this thing.”

    Have you been reading my blog about idioms? LOL! I just wrote about that particular one, which I had never heard before (I'm not up on Shakespeare) and here I see it in print on your blog. That is too funny!

    Anyway, back to cell phones. I feel your pain. I can't tell you how many times I have taken a picture of myself sitting on the toilet – by accident mind you – oops! This was only in my trailer, when I couldn't get whoever off the phone. Don't worry, I don't talk on the phone in public restrooms.

    I don't know all the bells and whistles on my phone either. My biggest accomplishment is doing a conference call with two of my sisters.

    As far as texting, I stumble through it. But when my son wanted me to send him a phone number, I didn't know how to switch the letters over to numbers so I couldn't send him the info!

  3. You sound just like me the other day when I was trying to figure out my damn iPod. Finally had to admit failure and give it to my son to load. I was ready to pitch the whole thing out the window – computer AND iPod. I'm dreading the day when my simple all-I-can-do-is-place-calls cell phone dies. I just want something that I can pick up and answer (or not) and maybe text a little bit, but that's it. Don't want internet access, don't want pictures, don't want bells and whistles. Just want a damn phone. Is that too much to ask?

  4. Fiddling with your new mobile phone? That sounds fun. I understood why you found it difficult to understand the operations the moment you mentioned Samsung. They come out with such excellent handsets but with complicated functionality. I'd always go for a Nokia or a Sony Ericsson just 'coz it's easy to operate. But don't worry. You've got a good set. It's only a matter of some patience and time before you get used to it.

  5. Monda, girl, don't give up on us yet!

    Give it to Em for a few so she can screw with the settings and maybe make it a bit more accessible to you.

    If my dad can figure out how to use his shiny new piece of electronics so can you!

    Though sometimes, I do with for the simpler days and when I do I often pull out my 33 1/3 and 45s and let them spin and take me away, there's nothing like the sound of vinyl!

  6. I try to only get new cell phones when one of my kids is within ten feet of me so they can immediately jump in when I get confused, which usually takes 90 to 120 seconds. I feed them whatever meal is coming up in order to keep them available to answer questions for a 2 to 3 hour period while I figure out all the bells and whistles I care about.

    You might want to give that a go. LOL

  7. give the Perfect Grandson a few more months and he'll sort it for you.
    when in electronic doubt i always ask my children…would much prefer a good oldfashioned telling bone such as the one you've pictured.

    alternatively, you could keep carrier pigeons.

  8. UPDATE: It's not just me! The phone's got a calibration issue. I trade it for a new one tomorrow. That said, I figured out the idiosyncrasy and managed to pick up calls, make a few calls, and even dabbled with the gadgets. It required a stylus (for now) but my confidence bloomed.

    It turns out I'm not an idiot after all.

    Besides, I have a daughter on call and 80+ student cell phone specialists in my classes. I had no idea there was so much technical assistance just for the asking.

    Lordy. Wait till I figure out these pictures and post them. Look out, is all I'm sayin.

  9. I agree, just ask someone under the age of 12 and they will have the phone going for you in no time!
    Just have a play around with it before you get frustrated with it and throw it at the wall!!

  10. It's probably not that hard, you're just not used to it. I would suggest you go back to the store and ask a clerk to show you some of the basic stuff. Having it showed to you might work better than just reading the manual.

  11. I'm a trial and error kind of operator. I hate reading manuals so I just mess with it until I get it. I may go years without ever learning all the toots my phone has :O)

  12. Clearly the manual is a waste of time for a kinesthetic learner like me. From here on out I'm learning this thing by trial and error with a little help from youngsters I accost on the way to class.

    It's the only way.

  13. Exactly right. I was going to suggest a phone manual burning, but since you already admitted that the darn book is a waste of time, a conflagration may just be overkill. Definitely go the accosting youngsters route. Cell phone tutorials via student tech wisdom is your best bet.

  14. Hey, if you do go back to Verizon, could you please ask them to have mercy on military families? The Navy moved us to Japan last summer and it really irks me to shell out $100+/month for nothing.

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