Friday, November 23, 2007

The Smartest Phone of All

Lost my fucking telephone again. Wasn’t even drunk or anything – a bit distracted by an early morning meeting, and it just slipped out of my pocket while I was on the bus.

Like almost all of my telephones, it was a Nokia I bought “second-hand” – at the Bird Market, a fabulously post-apocalyptic sort of market in a bad part of town. (In fact the part of town is so bad it’s actually called “Unnamed.” How’s that for cool?)

This particular market sells a strange assortment of stuff, all of which would be useful for the coming Zombie Uprising. DIY and home improvement stuff – tools, pipes, hardware, toilets – camping and hunting and fishing gear, knives, rope, army surplus junk like gas masks and haz-mat boots, coveralls and gloves, combo pocket tools, pepper spray and stun guns, and a large selection of “second-hand” phones, which are purchased and sold with no questions asked.

(I’ve been told that if you go there and see your recently lost or stolen phone, and can prove it’s yours, they’ll return it to you for a nominal fee of 50 rubles or so. A real group of Gentlemen Thieves, these guys. The cops occasionally crack down on the place, when some group of kids go on a rampage and kill 20 people just for their phones and sell them all out here, but mostly they operate unmolested.)

I love this place; the blatant illegality of it, sure, but it’s kind of like a museum of old phones, too – the old art-deco Nokias from a few years ago. All those old phones, lost in time, like tears in the rain. Who will love them if I don’t?

That was my seventh phone. I always buy Nokias – they’re well-nigh indestructible, which suits my head-banging lifestyle. (Although, having said that, I’ve managed to destroy two of them through Force 9 carelessness -- one of them got thrown into a bathtub full of water after I'd crapped my pants one morning after a rough night on the town and a week of the shits. You can read about that on the old blog, think it was 2004.)

I buy the cheapest ones, or rather, models which are at least three years out of date. I used to like the Nokia 3310 Hockey Pucks back in ’02 and ’03 and tried the Nokia 1100, which I found a bit unreliable as far as being used as a bottle opener. I had a colorful Nokia 3510 – metallic sparkly blue with orange stripes on the side that lit up – in 2005, but eventually moved up to one of those hideous 7000 series ones that had a triangular keypad that was supposed to look like a wolf’s face.

The last year or so I’ve been going for the Nokia 6610i. Sturdy, got a camera – albeit a crappy one -- they usually go for $40 or $50.

Now girls occasionally ask me why I don’t have a nicer phone – one of those fancy shmancy Nokia N70s with Internet and MP3 player and gigabytes of memory and all that crap -- and I admit I am occasionally tempted. I like toys as much as the next guy.

But then the practical adult in me points out that I’d just lose or break it in a matter of days, or get beaten up and robbed for it. While it might be nice to have a decent camera and video, I have no interest in listening to an MP3 player while I walk around – how am I supposed to hear hostiles creeping up on me?

So tomorrow I’m going to go out and look for my phone, and if I can’t find it, I’ll buy a new one. Wish me luck.


Batman said...

I will be there with you just as I have many times. I think I have been the voice of reason, well maybe just the voice, on the other end of the "new" phones at the BMarket the last 3 or 4 times. Buy a shitty one.

Chancedugan said...

"Banned by the Saudi Government"
I tried to pull your blog up in the staff room at work to show them something about Russian women and the site is BLOCKED. It's official now. The only way to see EnglishteacherX in Saudi Arabia is with Satellite Internet.