This is an update to the post from a bazillion years ago wherein I requested your advice about getting an iPhone.
My husband and I each got an iPhone. And I mostly don’t regret doing so at all. So I thought it might be useful/semi-interesting to look back to my Pros and Cons and see how they have measured up. Over the past… eighteen months. Which is how long I have actually OWNED an iPhone.
Objection #1: It’s expensive. Yes. True. VERY expensive. So expensive that I had a mini panic attack the day we went to the Verizon store to buy the things. We’d gone in KNOWING we were getting iPhones. We’d DECIDED. We had had extensive conversations about whether or not we should get them, and I’d laid out all my objections, one by one, over and over, for several months. And yet the pros had outweighed the cons, so we were there, in the Verizon store, for the Sole Purpose of obtaining iPhones.
But once we started looking at the pricing – which we’d known in ADVANCE – I started breathing a little bit more heavily. And then it took FOREVER for the Verizon store employee to ring up the order. Seriously. It took us at least an hour to get the iPhones. And we walked in knowing EXACTLY what we wanted, and there wasn’t a wait or anything. But it took forever. Too much time to build up a real Froth of Shopper’s Panic.
And THEN the Helpful Verizon Employee gave us his spiel about insurance and protective cases and I kind of lost it. I was… a billion years pregnant at the time. And it was hot outside. And we were about to welcome a super expensive new member of our family into our lives. And here was this “helpful” guy, trying to sell us insurance, and doing so by talking about all the things it would COVER. Broken screen. Toilet contamination. Stuck power button. On and on. And instead of feeling like insurance was a really good idea, I started thinking that the iPhone must be a Piece of Crap. Because seriously? All these things are likely enough that I should buy insurance to protect against them?!
So my voice started escalating and I started asking my husband loudly if we were really making the Right Decision here. And I got all red and splotchy and I had to sit down. That was mainly because being on my hugely swollen feet at that point was unbearable for more than five minutes at a go. I think I scared the poor Verizon employee half to death.
But! My husband prevailed! We left with our super expensive iPhones! And I haven’t thought about the expense since. Mainly because we’d budgeted for it. But also because I don’t pay the bills. And also because every time I panic about our finances, my husband reassures me with Facts and Numbers. He’s such a good guy, that one.
Objection #2: I don’t actually NEED an iPhone. So. I was wrong about this one. I really DID need an iPhone. The number one thing I do with my phone is take photos and videos of Baby Carla. Who is, by this point, Toddler Carla. But let’s not think about that too much please thank you very much. I feel GRATEFUL to this inanimate, unnecessary, expensive object for allowing me to photograph and film my kid at any time. Okay, at almost any time. Because some of the time my memory is full of photos and films so I don’t have enough room to take additional photos and films. And also Carla is at the age where she is more interested in seeing what’s on the iPhone than in being photographed/filmed by the iPhone, so a lot of my photos/videos of late are of her running toward me to see the screen.
Objection #3: The iPhone “culture” annoys me. I have been Really Good – in my opinion – about keeping my phone stowed away unless I am using it. And to me, “using it” doesn’t mean “keeping it on the table during a meeting.”
The iPhone culture still annoys me, though. My husband and Carla and I went to visit my parents this summer, and I was so excited to just relax in the beauty of their woodland surroundings with good books and good conversation… and everyone was on their devices the whole time. My mom was on her iPad and my husband and father were on their iphones. (Carla was obsessively following the dog around.)
I don’t know why it bugs me so much! If everyone’s doing it, that’s a free pass for me to catch up on blogs, right? But no. Instead I spent the time glowering at everyone – none of whom noticed, by the way, such was their engrossment in their devices. (Engrossment? Engrossal? What a stupid word.)
And sometimes I DO end up being the person I dislike. Sometimes I really want to finish reading an article when I’m supposed to be interacting with Carla. Sometimes I want to be texting when I should be engaging in conversation with another In Person Human. But it all annoys me deeply. ALL OF IT. Even my annoyance.
In addition to my objections, I had some reasons FOR getting an iPhone.
Reason #1. It seems like having an iPhone and being a parent complement each other quite well. Why yes, yes they do. I can’t TELL you how wonderful it was to have my phone in those first few months, especially. I could check (complain on) Twitter while nursing Carla. I could read blog posts about how to survive breastfeeding while holding a sleeping Carla on my chest. I could take photos all day long. I could capture Carla’s first time rolling over and her first time standing up and her first time crawling.
I mentioned FaceTime and apps in this reason and… I haven’t really downloaded any apps. I guess my husband downloaded Google maps onto my phone, maybe? I use that sometimes. And I have used FaceTime occasionally. But Carla really responds to it better if she can see the other person in full size, so we tend to FaceTime or Skype via the computer.
Aside from those long early months of constantly feeding the baby, I haven’t really used my phone for Twitter or blogging. Somehow my phone automatically goes to Swistle’s blog every time I open the web browser, so that’s nice. I DO end up catching up on her blog. But I find it so tedious and cumbersome to actually COMMENT on blogs with my phone, I rarely do.
Other random things I like:
I use my phone as a grocery list. My husband and I have our lists synced, whatever that means, so that whatever I add to my list appears on his and vice versa. This has been LIFE CHANGING. Also life changing? The ability to just tell Siri to add something to my grocery list or my Target list anytime, anywhere. I am NOTORIOUS for forgetting that key item I need to buy at Target, and this has helped cut back on that issue by about a billion percent.
Also, I can just consult my phone as we wheel through the grocery store. The other day, I got Carla all buckled in to her shopping cart cover when I realized that I’d left my phone in the car. It was snowy outside, I didn’t have a purse – just ten thousand reusable shopping bags, the shopping cart cover, and a wriggly toddler. So I left the phone in the car and had to go through the grocery store putting things in my cart FROM MEMORY like Laura Ingalls Wilder or something. It was terrible.
It is pretty awesome being able to look things up at any time. Like, my husband asked me the other day what “copacetic” meant, and I said it means “it’s all good.” (Said by drawing out the “awwww” of “all” and wrapping yourself in a Matthew-McConaghey vibe.) He didn’t seem convinced, so I told him to ask Siri, and she confirmed. I mean, not verbatim. But I maintain that her definition – “completely satisfactory” – is the same thing.
Or if you are watching SNL and thinking, geez, Jim Carrey looks like he hasn’t aged a day since Ace Ventura, you can just ASK SIRI to tell you how old he is. I love that kind of laziness instant education.
And I know this is old news for all those iPhone veterans, but I use the flashlight function ALL the time. If I have to work late, it helps me not trip over something and wake the entire house when I’m trying to climb into bed. Also, I check my throat for signs of strep a lot. Like, A LOT a lot.
Oh! I use my phone as an alarm clock. As a timepiece. As a distraction for Carla if she’s particularly antsy (in the car or on an airplane, for instance).
I guess the moral of this update is that I really like my iPhone. It was a great purchase. I haven’t looked back.