Joanne Palmer's Life in the 'Boat column appears Wednesdays in the Steamboat Today. Email her at firstname.lastname@example.org
Find more columns by Palmer here.
Steamboat Springs Something is wrong with my cell phone. It has taken over my life.
We have a strange and complicated relationship. I believe it owns me, which is an issue that could get me committed somewhere - just lock me up at Pearl Lake and throw away the key - but truly, it has become an electronic leash to which I feel tethered. We are overly co-dependent and probably need hours of intensive couple's counseling.
Can you imagine?
Shrink: What seems to be the problem?
Phone (sniff, sob): I feel neglected. She left me underneath a couch cushion with the remote and went to the grocery store without me.
Me: I needed a break. Just 30 minutes off the electronic leash, out of touch, it was heaven!
I have the Blackberry Pearl, aka. the smartphone. This Phi Beta Kappa phone has dozens of applications I do not use or understand, which makes me feel dumb. What is mobile streaming anyway? It sounds like a 3-year-old who couldn't find a bathroom.
And by "application," I do not mean a form you fill out to apply for a job. I think an "application" is a smartphone feature.
Let's face it, these phones are designed for members of the 20-something set who want to shoot videos and pictures of themselves participating in adrenaline-charged activities and upload them to their Web sites or post them to their Facebook accounts.
For me, in the warm embrace of the 50-something years, I have a different set of application needs for my phone. I really want a hybrid phone that is part Swiss Army knife and part phone.
Here is my list:
- Face recognition
I have now reached the tender age where it is getting really hard to remember people's names. I need a phone application that allows me to hold the phone up in a discreet manner so it will recognize the face of the person coming toward me and display their name on my screen.
- Comb, lip-gloss and tissue
These are the three things I am always looking for and if they were contained in my phone, it would simplify my life.
- Car and house keys
Aren't keys and codes obsolete by now? Shouldn't I be able to wave my phone at my car's ignition to start it?
If you've ever been to the movies and eaten popcorn, you'll know what I mean.
- Small mirror
You need the mirror to see if you have a kernel of popcorn lodged in your teeth and need the toothpick.
- A small pair of scissors
Have you ever noticed how difficult some packaging - especially plastic - is to open? My son just bought a pair of headphones, and we practically had to use a machete to open it.
- Recipe help
I am standing at the grocery store with a recipe that calls for the spice turmeric. Do I already have it at home or do I need to buy it? My smarty-pants phone should have the answer.
- Fat siren
Finally, the ability to get an honest answer to the question, "Does this make me look fat?" Because I do not have a full-length mirror, I frequently debate which pair of pants makes me look less doughy. A small but audible - only to me - fat siren on my phone would be invaluable.
- Medical scanner
My throat hurts. Is it strep, or have I been screaming at my phone too long? Scan it!
I think that takes care of my wish list. Call me when it's ready.