I love disposable

I like paper plates (the good ones, not the cheap ones) and have the decency to feel guilty about using them. I’ve worn a plastic Casio wrist watch for years (less than $20). And tonight bought a year’s worth of minutes for my little Nokia Tracfone.

I paid $19.95 for the unit at Wal-Mart and have been buying additional minutes for the last 18 months. The Tracfone was made for people like me (and Avon Barksdale). No synching with Outlook. No texting. No camera. No nothing.

Yes, I do keep the Casio Exilim and the MacBook by my side, but the Tracfone and the camera fit nicely in the MacBook case. Weight is not an issue, given my limited travel.

I’ll bet I saw 50 iPhones at Gnomedex and everyone else had state-of-the-art hardware. When I pulled out the Tracfone at lunch, the guy across the table asked, "What’s that?"

"North Korean. I’m not supposed to have this out in public. Sorry." …as I jammed it back in my pocket.

So I’ve got all the minutes I need for the next year, for about $11 a month. What is that, 35 cents a day?

2 thoughts on “I love disposable

  1. I would be remiss if I did not represent my mobile-device- empowered brothers and sisters out in the world. Steve, you are such an early adopter and technophile in so many other areas, what’s the deal with such willful ludditism in this one area? Not being a ‘phone guy’ isn’t a sufficient explanation.
    I notice this a lot, too– Telephones are such tricky things from a social standpoint. We have so much tied up in how they are used, when they are used, and what they can, cannot, should or should not be able to do.
    Some people cannot be dragged into a phone store to have any kind of mobile device, others (like me) scarcely see it as a phone at all, but more of an extension of one’s greater thinking and expression toolkit. Others yet see a phone as an expression of fashion that happens to make calls.
    For people who grew up where the phone was anchored to the wall, there are a whole set of behaviors hardwired into the brain. People like me in a transitional period to mobiles (e.g. Gen X) have a more casual attitude but still see a ringing phone as a kind of special event. The youngsters are blithe about answering or not, etiquette for texting or snapping pictures, about voicemail and IM’s and all the rest. Things like it being important enough to call but not important enough to leave a voicemail, or vilifying people for wearing a bluetooth headset, but also for talking without one while driving– are results of these sort of ingrained traits. Taken alone they don’t make a lot of sense.
    The thing is that like the buildings we inhabit, the architecture of our electronically-mediated conversations serves as a template for our greater civilization. It affects things far more than we probably care to admit, and like any other adoption of technology, the level to which we are willing to go affects the sort of interactions we are able to participate in.

  2. Hi Steve,
    I’ve had one that’s fairly similar – it worked for years. I frequently got comments like “hah, I see you’re still using that brick?”. Now that I have a slightly more stylish one (still no camera, I’m passionate about not wanting a camera on my cellphone, haha) I miss the old brick.
    ps : yours isn’t really THAT color, right? At least mine was red.
    Only joking.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *