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Lenore Skenazy
Lenore Skenazy
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Cell Phone Holdouts Are Right: Buy a Phone, Become a Baby


Whoopee for the iPhone, the latest version of the device that has made us a nation of blabbing babies: the cell.

Not that I could live without mine.

Still, I found a surprising number of cell phone holdouts who somehow manage to get by without the dropped calls, post-work work and daily conversation that goes: "Hang on just a sec. Can you make that coffee light, no sugar? I AM listening to you. You say you're getting a div — No sugar! Wait. What were we talking about? Oh yeah, so she walked out and — Can you break a 10?"

Holdouts will have none of this. In contemplating their righteous purity, we see the truth about our cell-addicted selves:

"If I were to get one, pretty soon I wouldn't be able to live without one," said holdout Henry Stimpson, neatly nailing the biggest problem with cell phones: the way they turn previously independent individuals into the great unweaned.

"Typical incident," Stimpson said: "I went to a ballgame with a bunch of my friends and afterwards all the other guys in the car were whipping out their phones and calling their wives. I don't need to call my wife! She knows I'm coming home."

Cell phones turn adults into babies, constantly needing contact with their spouses, friends and children. In fact, it's possible that children in a cell-connected world make out worst of all. This morning, not five minutes after I'd left for work, my 11-year-old called from the kitchen to ask if he could have banana bread for breakfast.

Kid — I'm not there . Eat ice cream and marshmallows. Make a vodka smoothie! Go wild or be a good boy, just pretend it's 1990 and I'm unreachable.

With all of us connected all the time — "Mom, I'm on the bus," "Mom, I'm two blocks from home" — independence never gets a foothold.

Young adults fare no better. I have a friend whose daughter went shopping for her first college formal and sent her mom — 1,000 miles away — a photo of each dress as she tried it on.

Grow up! Buy a dress by yourself! And while we're at it, learn to make plans, too.

"I go to concerts all the time and my network of friends, they just don't know what to do when they confront somebody without a cell," said a 27-year-old holdout, Briee (cq) Della Rocca. "They say, 'Call me when you get to the parking lot and we'll meet up somewhere.' I say, 'I don't have a cell phone. Let's plan in advance' — and the record stops. It's almost like they don't even consider that this is a potential option — to plan ahead."

Cell phones also allow their users to be late ("Almost there!") and opportunistic.

"Just this weekend, I'd met a woman at a party and I was just starting to talk when she got a phone call from a friend," said comic Ian Coburn. "The friend said, 'Oh, those guys that Patty wanted us to meet are at that bar right now!'" And off she went to the other bar.

Rudeness and cell phones go together like blue-tooth and terminal hipness, which is just another reason many holdouts refuse to buy in. They don't want to be the one shouting "I said I'M IN A RESTAURANT" in a restaurant.

Neither do I, but Ö that might have been me. Or you. And though the holdouts don't realize it, eventually it might be them, too. Because it's not 1990 anymore.

And that iPhone looks pretty cool.

Lenore Skenazy is a contributing editor at the New York Sun. To find out more about Lenore Skenazy (, and read features by other Creators Syndicate writers and cartoonists, visit the Creators Syndicate Web page at



39 Comments | Post Comment
Another hold out here. I have seen the learned helplessness set in with other slightly earlier than me late adopters. It is scary. Where before, someone actually went into a grocery store and made a decision, now they are instantly on the phone with their spouses: "Should I get 9 grain bread or 5 grain bread?" Who cares? Will your fiber count drop to zero if you choose the wrong thing?

The other view I see is the idea that a)cell phones make you invincible and b)you child will instantly vanish without one. I have stopped to help a very nice elderly lady who had a flat tire, and whose cell phone fell and broke when she got out of the car. The cell phone was neither an instant savior, nor did it prevent her tire from going flat. But when I say I have no cell phone, the answer is always a gasp "But what if there was an EMERGENCY?!?!" Well, I guess I would have to, I dunno, USE MY BRAIN!
Comment: #1
Posted by: BMS2000
Thu Apr 10, 2008 9:46 AM
Also annoying are the state legislators who say we could NEVER actually ban cell phones completely while driving. WHY NOT! It isn't the hands busy (well, with the exception of texting), it is the busy brain that causes the problems! I live in Japan and it is absolutely illegal to use your cell phone AND any hands free device while driving. You will lose your license for a minimum of 6 months. Guess what? People don't talk on their cell phones. If the call is important, they find a place to pull over where they can safely return the call.
It is also rude to speak on your cell phone on public transportation..... so people DON'T! The reason we don't have these laws on the books in the states is the massive amount of money the telecom industry pumps into our legislators coffers.
I DO use a cell phone and it is convenient but it doesn't rule my life. Just as with my landline, I answer a call when I want to do so and often, I just don't.
Comment: #2
Posted by: sdguppy
Fri Apr 11, 2008 12:01 AM
The problems you describe are not fundamental problems with mobile telephones. It's entirely possible to possess such a device and _not_ conduct conversations in inappropriate situations. They usually come with buttons which let you _reject_ a call instead of answering it; people just need to know how to use that button. Especially when it's work :)

I'm a partial holdout. I _do_ have a mobile telephone, but I discourage people from using it. If someone actually has the temerity to call me, I'll often demand to know whether they know what timezone I'm in, why their call is so important that it's worth waking me up for (when they say no to the previous question), and why they didn't use email instead. But I wouldn't be without it. There are certain circumstances, usually unforeseen, when I _want_ to be contactable. Planning ahead is all very well, but not always possible -- and life doesn't always go to plan anyway.

Comment: #3
Posted by: dwmw2
Tue Apr 15, 2008 5:02 AM
Yeah, I agree, "Grow up.... learn to make plans." I think there is something in his sentiment. I think people have a lack of character. I know that sounds a bit old fashion and family values conservative, but hear me out. Character is the development of discipline. As Don Miguel Ruiz says in 'The Four Agreements,' "control over one's own emotions, control over one's own self."

It makes sense to set up the different areas of my life in ways that make sense (social life, love, relationships, work, living arrangements, eating, etc.). But to do this requires discipline. As M. Scott Peck defines it in his best seller 'The Road Less Traveled' discipline is the ability to delay gratification. Which is the same as making plans, or having control over our emotions. We want something, this is an emotion, getting it would be gratifying. If we just seek instant gratification then we act like children. But instead if we can control the desires, the emotions, our selves, then we can delay gratification, we can use our rational thinking to make a rational decision instead of acting on our distress.

So I decided it makes sense to set up my social life in a way that makes sense. And it makes sense to have real contact with people, not just school contact, and work contact, and art project contact, but to organize my life so that I am having deep connections with people. Sure I want the (instant) gratification of being productive and getting things done and accomplishing something, but in the long run if I don't have true friends (or if I don't connect with them) then something is wrong. This is planning, this is discipline, this is "the way of the warrior" (Ruiz), being able to forgo something in the short run for something more rational in the long run.

That is the character that I talk about, which is in short supply especially in the USA.
Comment: #4
Posted by: Jesse Hemminger
Fri Apr 18, 2008 1:28 AM
While I agree with you on a lot of points, I disagree with you somewhat. The example of the girl buying the dress: maybe it was something special that mom really wanted to be a part of, and texting pictures was a way for mom and daughter to share the memory. My kids having cellphones has led to them being more independent and me letting them go easier. I don't require that they call me if they go somewhere or get somewhere or update me every half hour on what they are doing. I do require that their phone be charged and on when they are not home. They have to answer if I call, because it will be for a reason (letting them know that dad and I are going to be out for dinner and they have to feed themselves, they are 15 and 10 and can cook). Cellphones have been great when my tire went flat on the interstate, and have been annoying when my husband is getting emails at dinner, but someone who is a baby because of a cell, would have been a baby another way before.
Comment: #5
Posted by: Kimberlayn
Wed May 7, 2008 9:31 PM
My third phone died last month, and I'm living without well well, thank you. No more call forwarding my land line when I go out, no more forgetting to bring the phone with me when I go out, no more forgetting to deprogram it when I get back. Free at last! And I have a friend who, after having a work-imposed Blackberry, hates them and doesn't have one now. This fellow rebel keeps me strong in my resistance to get another one. Some people react as though I'm personally inconveniencing them because I don't have one, and as though I'm a freak. Too bad! One of the benefits of quitting smoking was to have one less thing to remember to take before leaving the house. The cell phone was another ball and chain. Less is more!
True story: On a bike ride last week, I was passed by a guy talking on his cell. Handsfree. Not the phone -- the bike.
Comment: #6
Posted by: Free at last!
Tue May 20, 2008 9:00 AM
Here's a thought. TURN IT OFF. You're at dinner? The movies? Spending the day with a friend? Turn off the phone! I have a cell phone, and only a cell phone because I move a lot, and it's easier for everyone if I carry the same number with me. But I am certainly not one of those people you describe in your article. My phone is on when I am available to take calls. When I'm not - that's what voice mail is for.

Having said that, dwmw2 sounds like kind of a jerk. Hey, dwmw2 - turn it off at night if you're going to be an asshole to the people who call you.
Comment: #7
Posted by: ames
Tue May 20, 2008 3:36 PM
I agree with some of what this artcle is talking about. I think it is rude to talk on your cell phone while ordering coffee or food. It is also wrong to answer your cell phone while you are talking to someone else.

But...I do think that taking pictures of wedding dresses and sending them to you mom is a great thing to do. I also think that calling your wife after the game is over so she knows when you are coming home is a nice thing to do.
Cell phones have made us more productive. I can go grocerie shopping and take a conference call at the same time so then when I get home I can spend more time with my kiddos.
I think that as long as you are courtous of others when using you cell phone then it is ok. We have made great progress with techonology. People are safer with cell phones. We can share more family moments with loved ones with our camera phones.
Comment: #8
Posted by: kra
Tue Nov 25, 2008 11:25 AM
I am conflicted.

I repeatedly threaten to cancel my cell phone and my husband goes bananas. What about if you break down? What if I need to get a hold of you? What if the kids are hurt? Good god man! I'm away from home, most days, no more than 2 hours. If they are sick they can wait in the nurse's office or call the next person on the list. Sometimes I can't stand how connected we all are.

Then there are other times when I am thoroughly enjoying a witty banter I'm having with my husband or the fact that I can send him pictures of the kids doing something he would otherwise miss. Or the fact that my sister can keep me posted about things in her daily life we wouldn't cover in weekly phone calls alone.

Mostly people just need to use their brains. Put the damn thing away in close public quarters and while operating ANY machinery or vehicle. Seriously, it's common sense - right?!
Comment: #9
Posted by: AmyAnne
Mon Apr 6, 2009 8:34 PM
Everything in moderation. There are plenty of ways to be an a-hole even without a cell phone.
Comment: #10
Posted by: Peeved Michelle
Mon Apr 6, 2009 8:48 PM
I totally agree!

Cell phones steal the independence and rationale from those - especially kids - who carry them. They no longer have to mentally map out what they'll be doing for the remainder of the day or if they'll need something from someone else at some point in the day. Instead, many cell junkies wander blindly off into the day, knowing that they're always a button-press away from their parents, spouses, or friends who'll swoop in and rescue them at the last minute. No planning necessary. No troubleshooting required.

Cell phones may very well be the nastiest new drug around. Wonder how long it'll be before there are "Cellaholics Anonymous" clinics popping up?

We somehow managed to survive quite nicely 20-30 years ago without all of this instantaneous communication. Yet today, people seem to feel that they "need" constant, instant connectivity.
Comment: #11
Posted by: Rob O.
Tue Apr 28, 2009 9:08 PM
Tried and failed. We tried to hold out on cell phones. We figured that if there was an emergency, 15 of the 10 people around us (that's right, some folks carry more than one) will have a phone or we can just use a pay phone. As it turns out, pay phones are extinct and unable to be found. When we did need to use one on vacation we got home to a couple of $16 charges per call made (nothing fancy). We finally gave in and now have canceled our land lines. We still try to be sane with our usage though. When I turn my phone off, or leave it at home and someone tries to tell me "I tried to get a hold of you but you did not pick up...", my reply is always "Look, I pay $100+ per month for two cell phones and I do so for my convenience. My cell phone is there for my convenience and not yours." That usually shuts them up pretty quickly.
Comment: #12
Posted by: NerdNoise
Sat May 9, 2009 6:24 AM
I can. not. stand. cell phones. I owned one for 2 years and it was probably the wost decision I ever made (that or the coterminous 3 year stint in government work - a series of mistakes). Cell phones don't exist for your convenience, they exist for the convenience of people who know you; once you get one, suddenly you are presumed always available - and when you make yourself unavailable it is somehow taken as an offense. "Why don't you ever answer your cell phone? What's the point of having one?" - Am I here on the rest of the world's demand? Please, seriously. what a waste of time and energy, to feel obligated to respond to every little passing thought that every person you've ever met might want to share with you - (fwd: twitter users).

If we cannot spend a portion of our lives in quiet contemplation or productive effort without interruption we watch our talents and abilities wither away to be replaced by the new talent of filtering reams of useless information for a nugget of value - a task I think is best left to Google. There are lots of really neat, useful things that cell phones do; including just about every feature that does not involve communication. Incidentally, I can do all those things with my laptop, and while I'd love to do some of them on an iPhone if I ever do you can guarantee nobody, and I mean nobody, will have my phone number.
Comment: #13
Posted by: Justen
Fri Jul 3, 2009 5:04 AM
Hi all,
I totally agree! Cell phones steal the independence and rationale from those - especially kids - who carry them.
<a href="" rel="dofollow">camper trailers</a>
Comment: #14
Posted by: avelino lobo
Tue Apr 27, 2010 4:59 AM
I'm 35 and I don't have a cell phone. My husband and I don't want to pay the outragous cell phone fees. If I need to reach him, I'll call him at work and he'll call me here at home. If I can't reach him, then I leave a message and vice versa. The other day I was listening to other moms talking outside my son's school. They said, "How did moms survive when we were kids? If my child gets sick, the school can call my cell." I laughed to myself. If my son gets sick and I'm somewhere else, they can leave a message and my son can wait in the nurse's office just like I did when I was a child. When I'm grocery shopping, I don't want to keep calling my husband to make sure I got everything. When we did have cell phones that's what we did. We were babies with cell phones. Now we are free and independent.
Comment: #15
Posted by: Esther
Sat May 1, 2010 4:28 PM
I LOVE cell phones for coordinating complicated activities. Back in the 1980s, we had HAM radios for the same reason, and I'd never be without it. It prevented so much confusion and problems.
Comment: #16
Posted by: Mimi R
Fri May 21, 2010 3:57 PM
I always enjoyed walking past the sales kiosk at the mall and responding to their question "Do you have a cell phone?" with "Why would I want that? Someone would call me."

But then my family insisted, so I got one- and washed it. Then I lost it. THen they caught on, but I'll only take it when I need it, and I never check my messages.

BUT- I had a field trip of HS seniors that was imploding over transportation issues, and 20 ninjas took out their cells and solved the problems.

It's a great technology for a friend to have.
Comment: #17
Posted by: tomgnh
Sun Jun 6, 2010 3:38 PM
It isn't the phone; it's the people. The phone merely provides rude, self-centered, insecure people with a convenient outlet.

I own a cell phone - a "smartphone", actually - and I always have it with me. But I think I use 70 minutes a month. Usually, I don't answer it when it rings -- that's what voicemail is for. Should someone in my family actually have an urgent matter, they know that if they call twice in succession, I will answer. I don't answer when I'm on the light rail, and certainly not when I'm driving; I don't answer when I'm somewhere it would be rude to do so (restaurants, theaters, etc.)

My most common uses are enablers of convenience. It's nice that I can call a friend for coffee if my work lands me in their neighborhood. It's nice that if I get invited out for drinks, I can easily chat with my wife about whether we have a late dinner or fend for ourselves that night. It's great that when I misunderstand directions and end up at the wrong coffee shop, I can call whomever I'm meeting and sort it out.

When my kids are old enough, I'll get them cells. I will not permit them to call me for every little thing -- questions about what to have for breakfast will be met with "you figure it out". However, it will be nice to know that they have the freedom to change their plans -- because they can let me know that they'll be home after dinner instead of after lunch, because they all decided to go for a movie.

A mobile can be a leash -- but it can also be a source of freedom.
Comment: #18
Posted by:
Thu Jun 17, 2010 10:18 PM
not a hold out. But then, maybe the ability to BE a holdout is a bit of a luxury.

Im certain my situation is different from many. I work fulltime in a job that requires me to be reachable 24/7/365. My husband works full-time but is unreachable at his place of business (no indiv phone lines, secretaries who wont take a message and hang up on you, etc.) And the coup de grace is we have a small child in daycare who gets sick. A lot.

I need to be reachable for the daycare since we already know my husband isn't. I need to be reachable by work because thats just how it is. For me a cell isn't a luxury. In fact, we are distributed one with our job. We call it our electronic leashes, but as I said. It's not a negotiable.

But in being required to be available, I have learned to love my phone.

It's a tool like any other. You can use it or abuse it. The fancy ones have a lot of garbage, but they also have a lot of useful tools (document scanners, pharma databases, etc.) Even the basic ones allow texting, and texting is a wonderful thing. My husband sends me notes frequently that are the equivalent of a "Honey, on your way home can you get a gallon of milk?" Becaues I've been out of my office all day and that's the best way to get me for a non-emergent item.

Don't knock cell phones as a whole. Knock some of their users. If They didn't exist, certain services we depend on wouldn't work so well.

Comment: #19
Posted by: becoming-mommy
Fri Jun 18, 2010 12:27 PM
I personally hate cell phones. I have a small pre-paid for emergencies. My kids have phones now and I HATE my kids with phones! 24/7 teen angst and drama! I've personally known top lawyers who spent less time on the phone. They have the attention span now of gnats!
Comment: #20
Posted by: Lisa
Fri Jul 9, 2010 12:51 PM
I hate 'em. I love 'em. As a solo pediatrician the cell phone allows me to do things with my family that I would not be able to do otherwise. I have to be available to my answering service, hospital ER's, etc. by law, otherwise it is "patient abandonment." Without the cell I would not be able to go to a movie with my wife, walk my dog, or take my son fishing. On the other hand, the government and insurance companies have been able to make laws and rules about physician 24-7 availability specifically because of this technology. No winning this one. I'm stuck with the cell as long as it is available.
Comment: #21
Posted by: Dwight
Tue Jul 13, 2010 2:07 PM
I gave up my cell phone almost two years ago after a heated dispute with AT&T over upgrading to an iPhone. Smartest thing I've done in in years. The handful of times I've been late and unable to check in are more than offset by simply being able to concentrate on what's in front of me rather than on a phone call. I love that I don't feel obligated to speak on the phone until I'm good and ready to return my answering machine messages. When you have a cell, people panic when they can't get ahold of you for a whole day--if you don't answer your cell or call back right away they imagine you laying in a ditch on the side of the road, or in pieces in a 50 gallon drum. When you have only a land line, they just assume, like rational people, that you've been out and that you'll call when you return. The downside is that people with cell phones now irritate the crap out of me. I will never, ever, EVER again own a cell phone.
Comment: #22
Posted by: Ashley
Wed Jul 28, 2010 8:13 AM
I have a cell phone. I never answer it unless I know it is vital that I do. I leave it in my bag, in my car, inside the kitchen cupboard . . . and I only really remember to take it with me if someone reminds me. I text my teenager, because I would never have a conversation with her otherwise, but I don't drop everything to answer a call from just anyone. A cell phone is handy to have in emergencies, and I have had one since they first became available at a reasonable price. But at the end of the day - catch me when I'm home or in my office - I might pick up then if I am not too busy.
Comment: #23
Posted by: Karron
Sun Oct 31, 2010 12:32 AM
Great article! It's so true about how people rarely make plans anymore. It can be really irritating.
I don't have a cell phone either, and one of the main reasons is the electromagnetic radiation they emit, which is very detrimental to your health. You can find 2 short video presentations on what those dangers are and what you can do about them at
Comment: #24
Posted by: Pat
Fri Nov 12, 2010 4:30 PM
I don't have one because I like to be un-interrupted when I'm out doing something away from home. I like to make sure I'm getting charge the correct price at the check out, I like being able to pay attention to what I'm watching, etc.
Anyone important enough to have my phone number deserves to have my full attention & I can't give them that when I'm out & about.

That said, over the summer most of the pay phones "disappeared" due to lack of use so I am seriously contemplating getting a "pay as you go phone" with a year subscription to keep in the glove box. If I do that I'll put on the voice mail "if you want to reach me call the house or email me, please don't leave a message".

But I'm also fortunate in that it's just me & my kid - no one else significant needs to ping me. If I did get one of those I'd probably get a regular cell to make them happy :)
Comment: #25
Posted by: Sam
Mon Nov 15, 2010 2:09 PM
Haha... I like this! My sister told me today that she would call me on my mobil to meet up later later. I told her I didn't know where it was, as usual, and so we had to go through the motions of the week to find it. Turns out it was in my car right in the center console and I didn't know this because I haven't even driven my car in 7 days! I just can't understand how these things can turn into lifelines...
Comment: #26
Posted by: kari b.
Wed Nov 17, 2010 3:22 PM
Count me among that number. Never had a cell phone; never will. Don't wear a watch either, and rarely ever did. Good god, people! You can be yourself, complete, without additional apparatus.
Comment: #27
Posted by: avery st clair
Fri Dec 10, 2010 12:01 PM
In the beginning a cell phone was not in the cards. Too expensive, trendy and unnecessary. Then I watched everyone around me earjacked by the ringtone. Kids wanted mom to bring home fruitloops. Husbands wondered when their wives would be getting home. Friends needed to know what happened last night on Desperate Housewives. Not. Going. There. So when my children wanted their own phones they had to be able to afford them. Mom doesn't have one so don't ask me to pay for yours. Babysitting and birthday money allowed them to pay for their plans and believe me they paid attention to the charges and learned from the experience. I'll never forget my 13 year old son negotiating with a T-Mobile operator to waive the 478.00 worth of text messages that appeared on his bill. She did - and his self-confidence went through the roof.Also, I don't have to worry about weaning them from the habit, I know thirty year olds that are still on the "Family Plan". If you want to raise independent children let them buy their own phones!
Comment: #28
Posted by: Elizabeth
Tue Dec 14, 2010 11:28 AM
Oh wow, I never thought about it like that before.
Comment: #29
Posted by: veen reen
Mon Jan 17, 2011 6:06 AM
Modern Romance...

Some years back, when I used to frequent city buses, I recall when boarding a bus one day, after paying the fare and proceding toward an unoccupied seat, being practically blinded by an astonishingly brilliant smile on the face of an astoundingly pretty girl. Thinking at first the smile was directed upon myself, I almost blushed.
Alas, it was not so. The smile was entirely intended for the handsome young man who boarded the bus just behind me.
From the vantage point my seat offered, I was able to watch this Shakespearian tryst unfold, as the young man sat down a few seats up from the girl, and they proceded to "speak" to each other with their eyes. It was profoundly cute, touching, and altogether lovely.
Just when it appeared to reach critical mass...

...her cell phone rang.

And that was it. Over. Kaput.
I admired that young man a whole lot, though. Precisely three and a half seconds after her eyes glazed over with celluloid dementia, he was deep into a well-thumbed book.
Does anybody under the age of 60 ever really "meet" anyone that way, anymore.
'tis a sad thought, no?
I mean,
the language of the eyes..................

For a real good time, read Ray Bradbury's "The Man Who Murdered His House"
(it's where we're headed, folks)

Comment: #30
Posted by: JP Merzetti
Sat Feb 12, 2011 8:58 AM
Age hath its privilieges. I have a cell phone simply because there are no pay phones anymore, but I only turn it on when I need to make a call; no-one except my husband and adult children has the number. The type of work I do would lead many to think they needed to be reachable all the time (I do consulting projects for nonprofits, often have several clients going at a time and are negotiating for future projects). But, I don't give clients my cell phone number and I tell them that the advantage is that when I'm with them for a day or half day, they have my full attention.

And really, I need more alone time than I would ever have if I were willing to recieve calls on my cell phone.
Comment: #31
Posted by: jane
Thu Feb 24, 2011 3:28 PM
While I'm not technically a hold-out, I will say that I refuse to take my cell phone into stores, restaurants, theatres, the office, and the like. It is either in my truck or at my house. And I always get the excuse, "I take my cell phone into the store in case my kids have an emergency." Oh, give me a break. For starters, that's what 911 and next door neighbors are for! Second of all, I have heard a lot of cell phone conversations in Target (thousands!) and I have never, not even one time, heard any of them say, "Apply pressure and call 911! I'll be there in 10 minutes." Never. But I have heard a lot of gossip.
Comment: #32
Posted by: Mary
Mon Mar 7, 2011 10:44 AM
I agree that people who can't make a single move without using their cell phones are annoying, but not all cell phone users are like that. I have had a cell phone since I was 14 and I pretty much use it to call people when I need to tell them something, or plan something.
It's symptomatic of the society we live in that people can't just be happy in the moment their in, with the people they're with, they have to call someone else, plan something else, 24/7.
Comment: #33
Posted by: Stephanie
Sat Mar 19, 2011 8:57 AM
I love my cell gives me freedom and is a time saver. I am in charge of soccer teams and when there is a last minute change (which happens all the time!) I can text the message and send it out within a minute. Prior to cell phones you had to call each person, leave voice messages, hope they got them. So half hour vs. 1 minute, duh.
I think it is up to the individual as to how the cell can rule your life. Mine doesn't rule...... I embrace the freedom, I decline calls and answer when I have time or call that person back later.
Now I don't have to sit at home and wait for the doctor, or serviceman to call. I give them my cell number and go on my merry way. FREEDOM!!
Comment: #34
Posted by: Kim
Fri Apr 15, 2011 7:50 AM
We have a prepaid cell phone in the car that is turned off at all times. We charge it every so often so it will be available in an emergency. We take lots of road trips and live in the desert so we got this phone just in case we have car trouble in the middle of nowhere. It's $1.99 a day for unlimited calls and $0 on the days we don't use it. We used it a little on vacation so we could meet up with family easily, but it has been turned off since. My husband is in the military so the phone has to be on when we are out of town in case he is called to work. My children deserve my attention at the park or gymnastic lessons and even while grocery shopping. I don't need to be in constant contact.
Comment: #35
Posted by: Lisanne
Wed May 4, 2011 9:42 AM
Or you make the cell work for you.

Mine is always on silent. In a bag or pocket. I only know if someone is trying to contact me if I look - which I typically don't.
But it means when I want to use it I can.
And that people can either txt or leave a message for me, and I will get back to them when I want to. Or not.
Comment: #36
Posted by: baby-paramedic
Sun Nov 20, 2011 10:00 PM
This happened to me during a visit from my dad. He wanted to meet my kids and me at the state capitol after having breakfast at his hotel. I asked him what time and at what landmark, to which he replied, "I don't know, I'll call you when we get there." I told him I don't have a cell phone. Long pause. Finally, "What? How are we going to meet?" Astounded I told him, "Dad, you're 75 years old, so try to remember most of your life before your cell phone and how you met people." Sadly disappointed he finally submitted to me calling him (on his cell) when I left the house for his 30-minute "warning" to tell him what landmark to meet at. Upon arrival he had me borrow his wife's cell phone just in case anyone wanted to "wander off." I told him that we had limited time together and I had no intention of wandering away because I found some museum exhibit more interesting than I found him.
Comment: #37
Posted by: Emma Powell
Sun Dec 11, 2011 9:39 AM
I'm 27, and, although my husband and I both have cell phones, we are a pair of those annoying people who:
1. Often leave one or both of our phones at home or in the car, and tend not to carry them on our persons
2. Refuse to answer calls when we are having a conversation in-person with each other, one of our kids, or anyone else
3. Regularly turn our phones off for what could be days at a time ON PURPOSE
Comment: #38
Posted by: Melissa Wildes
Wed Jan 25, 2012 11:20 AM
When our son was about two, we broke down and bought a pay-as-you-go phone. This was because our son was finally old enough to leave with a sitter and we realized that "call us at the pub" wasn't quite going to cut it.
I ran a preschool from our home. The phone was great for taking on walks, 'just in case'. Parents could reach me if need be.They were reassured I could summon help if need be. Never needed to use it for that purpose.
My husband has his own pay-as-you-go phone now. It's pretty much a requirement for his job as an IT guy. He gets "alert" calls when machines fail, systems go down or the server room overheats. I hate when his phone rings.
We chose phone plans that don't accommodate lots of chatter and 'checking up on you' type calls. I refuse to text, and yes, people do look at me cross-eyed when I tell them I'd rather make plans ahead of time instead of text minute to minute. We are adults, we know how to plan ahead. I operate on the assumption that adults can make plans for a set time and keep them. The phone doesn't have to make you infantile, unless you want it to.
Our son is five now. He'll get a phone when he's saved up enough money raking the neighbor's leaves or babysitting. My mother used to just give us fifty cents (back when pay phone calls were a quarter a pop) and made sure we knew this was our 'emergency phone money'. We KNEW not to come crying to her if we spent it.
Comment: #39
Posted by: Hazel M. Wheeler
Wed Mar 28, 2012 7:58 PM
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