Cellphone Angst

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I drove up to Los Angeles and didn’t bring a phone charger. I didn’t think I would be there that long. Little did I know. Traffic in LA is beyond horrible. For sure, it is one place I could never live. It is impossible to plan anything when you have no idea whether it is going to take you 15 minutes or 6 hours to get to where you’re going.

My iPhone is still not working all that great. The main complaint is battery life. It sometimes lasts a few hours, but not normally. Apple put a new battery in a couple months ago, but that didn’t fix the problem.

So, about half way into the “trip”, my phone’s battery is showing red, which isn’t good. I’ve had some time to think about it now and I truly don’t understand the stress. Intellectually, I can figure it out easily. No phone, no problem, really. But, emotionally, your mind starts playing all these tricks on me that tell me I really need my phone. Like really bad.

I’m thinking about all the potential calls I might be missing. Or if I’m not going to meet up with the people I supposed to see. All these things that rarely ever happen. Plus not being able to check in with people. I think that is the weirdest one.

Somewhere down the line, cellphones became a way to update people we’re close to, what we are doing and where we are at. Like it really matters. It is so strange that we feel that is an important part of our lives. And people that are used to the updates, sort of get worried or stressed that they aren’t getting them. Intellectually it makes no sense, but emotionally it is just there.

I’m half way thinking about just leaving my cell phone at home when I go out and ride. I have only once, that I can remember, had to call someone to come get me during a ride. And if I need that, I’m sure just about anyone I ask will let me use their phone for a call.

The key is having a phone number. I used to have dozens of phone numbers memorized. Now just a few. And maybe only one or two of those are cell numbers. That could be a problem.

I’ll think about the whole thing awhile. Cellphone both add and subtract from a good life experience.

Anyway, I finally made it up to Shimano. I got a few new pairs of shoes and some wheels. Shipping is so outrageously expensive now, I feel it is my obligation to personally pick up stuff when I’m close by. Plus, it’s always nice to catch up with Wayne and the guys up there.

It seems like Wayne is nearly all dressed to ride when I show up.  Kind of strange.  His legs look amazingly fit.

It seems like Wayne is nearly all dressed to ride when I show up. Kind of strange. His legs look amazingly fit.

I haven't had any black cycling shoes for quite a while.  Makes sense for cross and MTB racing.

I haven’t had any black cycling shoes for quite a while. Makes sense for cross and MTB racing.

I stopped in Laguna Hills and visited an old friend, Marcel Calborn.  He used to own Celo Europa in Manhattan Beach and now is down south.  He is a true master mechanic.  His current shop is almost of mirror image of his old shop.  I can't believe the number of steel frames he has.  Very old school, which is appropriate.

I stopped in Laguna Hills and visited an old friend, Marcel Calborn. He used to own Celo Europa in Manhattan Beach and now is down south. He is a true master mechanic. His current shop is almost of mirror image of his old shop. I can’t believe the number of steel frames he has. Very old school, which is appropriate.

This Delorean passed me right by the nuclear power plant north of Camp Pendleton.  I hadn't see a Delorean in a long time and it made me chuckle it was right near a nuclear power plant.

This Delorean passed me right by the nuclear power plant north of Camp Pendleton. I hadn’t see a Delorean in a long time and it made me chuckle it was right near a nuclear power plant.

18 thoughts on “Cellphone Angst

  1. Bryan

    I’m usually out riding alone and the cell phone is a nice security blanket. Twice since 2010 I’ve been in situations where I was stuck out on the road, miles from home, with a broke down bike (usually tubes that can’t be repaired, although once in Texas a dog took a bite out of my rear tire casing) on no cell. Those were LONG walks home, pushing a bike down the road.

     
  2. Neil Anderson

    Robert Pirsig said quite a bit about technology in “Zen & the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance” , but one part that stuck with me was, something like — every time something is invented something else is destroyed.

    The invention of the cellphone brought some great advantages to modern life, but it’s also killed certain kinds of freedom.

     
  3. Chris G

    You are probably aware, Wifi and Bluetooth Off helps battery life a lot, then it’s not scanning all the time. Screen brightness as low as possible. Use power button to sleep ASAP when done with anything…

     
  4. tclaynm

    Hey Steve,
    If you have FB and the new FB messenger on your phone, it really eats up battery life. The messenger especially does something weird now (the new version). I had to get rid of it, as I know many other people have. It has something to do with it always checking on your location or something. I didn’t really research it much, but that is what I heard from someone when it first came out and everyone was reporting the issue with it eating up your battery life.

    Also, just put your phone on “airplane mode” when you know you won’t be needing it for a while. It totally saves battery life…almost as good as turning it off. It also helps to put it on “Power Save” and lower the screen brightness. I’m sure you know all that, but I like to hear myself talk and act like an expert.

    Your post just resonated with me because I think about this exact same thing. I have ridden my bike here in rural NM since I was a kid, and never needed them all that time, but now it seems like a requirement. Of course, with a wife and two young kids, the requirement is more understandable. I guess going up to someone’s house to make emergency phone calls is just not the normal thing to do anymore.

    Good to hear that you’re still on the mend. It’s just going to take more time to get that “back to normal” feel back.

    I remember going to Shimano all those years I was on Shaklee. Wayne would meet with us and I’d always love walking out there with those fancy-ass silver carbon-souled shoes that were so popular in the mid-90s. I still have the remnants of a few of those for keepsakes.

     
  5. DR

    Just turn your phone off and check in on things a couple of times a day. You will find that you are not looking at your phone every five minutes like the rest of the world is.

     
  6. gerrycurl

    I was a late adopter for cell phones (2004) and never got into texting. I still have a flip-phone. When I got annoyed at Verizon for sending me so many intruding marketing texts, I asked them to completely block it. No texts in OR out. The only inconvenience this has caused has been to those assuming that my owning a cell phone also means that I text. Their texts end up in outer space with no feedback given to them by the system that the message is never going to make it. I may (or may not) have a bunch of people who think I’m ignoring them. Fortunately, I’m secure enough to not lose sleep over this. When my wife and I need to communicate with each other on our phones, we just call.

    The only other thing that sucks is how few people actually answer their phones or check their VM. They only use texting. Oh well. Not my problem.

     
  7. Wildcat

    I can’t stand long texts. I think text messages should only be used for yes or no questions – or messages that only require one text per person. If a conversation requires more than one text per person, I just call them. Although, I too am amazed with the number of people who don’t answer their phone, but the people who really annoy me are the ones who call you back without listening to your voice-mail message. Hello!!!!!! I just left you a voice-mail message with all the info I needed you to get into your brain!!!!! Had you listened to my message you would not need to call me back and make me waste my time repeating myself because you were too lazy to check your voice-mail.

     
  8. The Cyclist

    Voice-mail is so 80s. Why do all these ppl still persist on leaving voice-mail messages when no one listens to them anymore. Annoying. Text instead.

     
  9. Matt

    Wildcats post reminds me if that rif..”oh I know how to be quiet! When someone asks me to be quiet, we u quiet right down, not a peep out if me, silence. Dead. Cold. Silence. Ad nauseum…”

    Lol

     
  10. Taylor

    I never knew marcel was a “master” mechanic. I live a few blocks from his shop and have been amazed by his business practices. he does make for some great stories though. “Bubba, besides the hub, spikes, and run; these wheels are identical.”

     
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