Sunday, February 13, 2011

The Life of a Cell Phone on the Ranch

There are few things that have a rougher life around the ranch than cell phones.  I don’t know what it is about them, but they cannot catch a break around here.  Just a few examples of what a cell phone has to deal with:

Case 1:  This poor cell phone was used (as most of them are) as a flashlight while walking out from a deer stand.  It turns out that running the screen for that long drains the battery – who knew?  And then it was lost out of a coat pocket while walking through the brush.  It took about 3 days to find it.  They don’t ring too well with a dead battery, in case you were wondering.

Case 2:  This phone happened to be in Mr. HH’s inside coat pocket while he was working outside in the mud.  The phone stayed clean, although the coat did not.  Shouldn’t be a problem, right?  Until he decided that the best way to bust the dried mud off of the coat was to beat it repeatedly against the concrete sidewalk.  That phone never stood a chance.

Mr. HH’s last phone was a cute little slider phone he got when we moved to Texas.  I decided to be smart and insure it through the carrier, since up to that point the estimated life span for one of his phones was about 4 months.  Hah!  That dumb phone never broke, and I ended up paying more for insurance than I would have for a new one.  Guess the joke was on me.

Then last year we happened to get a couple new phones for free, and I gave him the one with a slide-out keyboard.  Which he thought was the dumbest thing ever…until he learned he could text his brother from the tree-stand during deer season, at which point it became the best phone in the world.  Go figure. 

It is a durable little phone, but not durable enough to endure being snapped over the tailgate of the truck while loading tile for the ranch house.  Unwilling to pay full price for his precious phone, I found a replacement screen, got the tools, and we fixed that sucker right up.  Sorry Nokia, but I’m pretty sure the warranty was voided when he dropped it in a cup of orange juice a few months ago anyway.

The other thing he loves about this phone is its super super loud alarm.  It is the only alarm that can reliably wake him up in the morning.  Of course, it also wakes up me, the cat, the dog, the neighbor’s dog 2 blocks over and the National Guard, but whatever.  Two mornings with the new screen (after the state of Kansas called to tell him to shut off his alarm) I heard a suspicious clatter from his side of the bed, followed by a few choice words and the sound of a phone being repeatedly turned on and off.

-“Is everything ok over there?”


-“Are you sure?  Because it sounded like you dropped your phone onto the bed rail and it hit pretty hard.”

-“It’s fine.  Leave me alone.”  Beep beep beep as he is pushing buttons trying to get the screen to come back on.

pause….beep beep beep…

-“Do I need to order you another screen?”

-Sigh.  “Better get 2 this time.”


Jamie H said...

Sounds a little like what my husband's phones go through. We does construction. Believe it or not, one of his phones went into our hot tub (in his swimsuit pocket) for 15 minutes before he discovered it was in there. He dried it out for a few days and it worked!

Mr. HH said...

This is just a few of the things I've did, I don't think they make a cell phone designed for my kind of use.

Mrs. HH said...

Jamie - Wow that is amazing! And I thought the orange juice was bad.

Seems like there should be a market for ruggedized phones for these hard working men, right? Like maybe made out of rubber so they bounce when you drop them!

Mrs. HH said...

Judith and Jen:
Ok, fire department and oilfield I understand! Those guys have a reason to break them. But Mr. HH is just cursed. He breaks them just walking down the street! I am glad this one has a replaceable screen, it is the cheapest fix ever. And he gets to keep his keyboard and fancy camera features :)

Plus it gives us a good laugh.

DAD said...

All of the above is why I love my bag phone.

crystal.cattle said...

Those old cellphones are built strong! Especially, when you were finally hoping one would break so you could get a need one.

Anonymous said...

Just found your blog and LOVE it =)
For the phone thing we went through broken screen to system failures (self turning off while speaking to another person) to theft.
So far outdoor cell phones (e.g. nokia 5140) had the longest life-time, despite the lack of some functions like facebook etc. =) Regards Ms K.

Mrs. HH said...

Thank you! I'm currently 'away' for a bit after having a baby, but I plan to return soon with lots of new blog fodder. Thanks so much for stopping by.

Arriana Jane Calderon said...

I love your blog. My mother still has the cell phone she bought in 2005, it's still going strong and she will not part with it. It makes me laugh.

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