Monday, March 1, 2010

Hands free is the way to be OR Wave 'em like you just don't care

I know I say this about every other week but the good times are officially over! Wanna know how I know? Because I just bought a “hands free” device for my cell phone. Good times = SO OVER.

Everyone knows that only annoying, self-important adults use hands free devices, but I didn't know what else to do! It's illegal to talk on your cell phone while driving where I live and I spend a ridiculous amount of my time commuting. And then once I get to work I usually jump in a company car and drive around for a good portion of the day. Sometimes I have to talk on the phone while I'm driving. I really feel like I didn't have much of a choice in the matter.

Sherman Alexie said white people invented commuting, and if that's true then I am ashamed. I guess white people also invented atomic weapons, “American Idol” and disco, so I shouldn't be surprised. I think white people invented suburbs, so it follows logically that they invented commuting.

Believe me when I say that if I ever figure out exactly which white person invented commuting, they are getting punched in the face, no questions asked. I don't know who it is, but they probably live in Portland, work at Starbucks and drive a Subaru with lots of bumper stickers, so they’ll be easy to find. Perhaps I will run into them at an ugly sweater party or a Vampire Weekend concert.

But don't worry, I didn't get a Bluetooth or anything. I have a long history of talking trash on Bluetooth users dating back to the first time I saw a man having a really animated conversation with himself and decided he was having a psychotic break. I couldn’t very well go out and buy a Bluetooth, now could I? It would severely tarnish my reputation and smudge my self respect.

While looking at other hands free options I saw a little device called a “Jawbone.” Who is naming these things anyway? They sound like World of Warcraft avatars or fantasy novel characters, like “Jawbone the Warrior” or “Bluetooth the Mage.”

I am not an authority of hands free devices, nor am I an authority on being cool. However, I do not believe that hands free devices are cool, and if you think you look cool you need to stop and take a good hard look at yourself. I do believe that hands free devices are permissible inside of a car and maybe an office but nowhere else. Ever. Here are some examples:

Bluetooth at a restaurant = hands free faux pas
Bluetooth in the store = hands free faux pas
Bluetooth in church = hands free faux pas
Bluetooth while using a urinal in a public restroom = hands free faux pas

Basically, a hands free faux pas is any situation where other people who are not part of your conversation are forced to hear your conversation.

Having said all of that, I still bought one. It was only $9, it plugs into my phone and I never use it outside of the car. I promise! What frightens me is: if I'm buying a hands free telephone device, what's to stop me from getting other adult items like a child, an unhappy marriage or a car payment I can't afford? The frail threads to my disappearing youth are steadily being severed one by one and I don't know how I-

Gotta go, I have to take this call.



  2. Got one with a cord, because if people saw me talking to myself in the car, they'd know I wasn't a weirdo. I hate those things. In fact, I hate my phone. But I love your blog. The Vampire Weekend comment reminded me of a certain mutual acquaintance we have. He uses a BlueTooth. And recently made an appearance at my favorite (Albuquerque!) store to buy a $65 pen to impress his girlfriend. There's a term for people like that, but I'm trying to clean up my language.

  3. So you took a call in the middle of this public conversation?! Rude.

    It's illegal here, too, but I refuse to bend and get a hands-free. I just can't be one of those people. Instead, I choose to be the a-hole who puts you on speaker in my car and force you to repeat what you said while I yell to be heard. I figure its the lesser of two evils.

  4. yeah, some things should stay in their natural habitat. Aka: car.

  5. I saw a woman the other day in Walmart who had one in each ear. CRAZY!

  6. I totally agree with you. I hate hearing other people talk loudly and being all animated in public. They just end up looking ridiculous, and its confusing for those of us who think at first that they are talking to us on the street.
    good stuff.


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