Friday, June 14, 2013

Only Mama can't Text

I am one of those people who is permanently attached to their cell phone. It is my electronic security blanket.  I get slightly panicky if I can't hold it and caress it all the time.

I am also one of those people who destroys cellphones on a regular basis.  I love the technology, I'm just sort of impaired.  For example, the first year I was single I went through 6 cell phones.  That's pretty much one every other month, and yes, I always got the insurance.  They will no longer send me replacement phones through the mail - I have to bring them in to the store to see if there is any way possible they can get out of replacing the phone. They have lost faith in me.

Several were dropped on hard surfaces, several didn't like me to use the touch screen in the rain, one took a bath in a gallon of paint, and apparently I am not very gentle when I insert the power cord, as I have broken than mechanism several times. The rest just died under mysterious circumstances.  I feel I have bad luck.  I am sure that if cell phones had little "Most Wanted" posters of chronic cell phone abusers, I'd be on their top five list.

I also sort of suck at the touchscreen.  I mean I really suck at the touchscreen.  The only way I can send a message at all is if I use "SWYPE" which is basically the phone making an educated guess about what I am trying to say.  If you use SWYPE, you should probably proofread your texts.  I don't.  I text too much.  I send over 1,000 texts a month, and that doesn't include message apps like Facebook, Yahoo, Skype, etc. If I actually proof read all of them, I would certainly rear-end someone while driving. Not that I condone texting while driving. I only text at red lights.

My change from a QWERTY keyboard to a touchscreen has left me texting worse than my mother.  Here's an example of an exchange between my sister and I:

You see how she just stopped responding?

People used to use context clues and educated guesses to figure out my texts, now they just ignore me or force me to translate. Except sometimes I no longer have any freaking idea what I was trying to say in the first place.

Now, here is a text from my mom, age 69.

See? Mom is more understandable, I think, mostly. Or maybe not.  We both have big hands, but not larger than a man's hands, so I guess that's not an excuse. In spite of what it sounds like, we are not uneducated people.  English is our native language.  She has age on her side - she is not the target market for texting technology.  Apparently, though I fit the demographic, I don't fit the skill set.  

However, my BFF, Asterisk, can always understand my texts.  At first I thought it was because she loved me more or just tried harder, but I finally figured it out.

She also SWYPEs.  She sees the same suggested words for typos that I do every time she types.  She knows that love can easily come out as ludelube, or life, and that its often just means is, but occasionally means it's or its.  Subconsciously, she has absorbed the list of possible replacement words. She speaks my typo.


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