Smarter than I.

By modern emmet

I certainly had no intention of entering the information age. It wasn’t my fault.
I was lying in my gorgeous Cobb Manor bed (big surprise) when the phone rang. I was half asleep (big surprise) when the nice man from Verizon called. He suggested that I could get a new “smart phone” for the same cost as the “dumb phone” I was using.
Now Jefferson Phil had already purchased a smart phone and I did not care to be left behind. JP had already taken a class on how to use the device. A phone class.
Since I was planning a trip to Florida, the new phone would come in handy. Usually I had to lurk in a McDonald’s parking lot to find a Wi-Fi connection and catch up on e-mail and go to a library (a library!) to send a longer message. It is true that I am a born slob but even I always wondered who had used that Florida library keyboard before I did.
I should have known better but I signed up for the damn thing. By the time I got to my first stop in Norton, Mass. The damn thing (Datatech?) was driving me crazy since I could not answer calls, which is pretty much job #1 for a telephone. I had to hit the keyboard so hard that the battery fell out in my lap. Not good for safe driving.
Before the drive to Spring Hill, Florida I went to the neighborhood Verizon store and got a real “Smart phone” for another $100. This phone system had unlimited calls and texts. But it had limited “data,” whatever that was. For the next week, I kept getting e-mails that I was overusing my data, whatever that was. Every time I got the message, I called Verizon.
No problem they said…again and again. I must have called every day for two weeks sorting out different plans and prices. I prayed that I could get my hands around at least one Verizon throat. Finally, I just gave up.
Now, of course I love it and cannot do without it. When I (puff, puff) did a 20 mile bike ride on the Withlacoochee bike trail, I stopped every five miles to check e-mails and those vital Facebook messages. I took pics of the trail and posted them, to bore my Facebook friends like they bore me. (Turnabout is fair play)
I could even call up the Google map “App” and pinpoint exactly where I was sitting, sweating.
Naturally, the picture of the dozen raw oysters on the table at Steamer’s Clam Bar in Cedar Key was transmitted to Facebook, instantly. How does that work?

When I wanted to find the Amnesia Bar, I just punched it into the phone. My smart phone (now new best friend) not only gave me directions, but reviews from customers, including the fact that the waitresses hula-hooped atop the bar. “A night you won’t remember in a bar you will never forget,” was the bar’s legend.
Grima has called me “Amnesia” ever since I lost my car in Daytona Beach, so I had to explore the bar (and transmit pics).
I explored more and more of the “Apps.” One map not only gave me directions and time of travel to the Renew Mansion in Palatka, but I pressed another button and got a picture of the house! Astounding.
No matter where I travelled, I could get the latest e-mails and the endless jokes from Heddericg. (Not always a good thing.) Somehow the phone beeped in the middle of the night when another vital e-mail came in.
Never one to miss a meal, I love the “app” that lists all the area restaurants, complete with directions and ratings. Gas stations, hospitals, shopping centers, airports and highway maps are at your fingertips.
I don’t know about you, but I have spent half my driving life looking for places, for an embarrassing amount of time.
Now If I can just tear my eyes away from the screen for long enough to drive the car, all will be fine. The damn thing is much smarter than I am.
Smart phone, where have you been all my life? Maybe, you could have found that missing car in Daytona.