Last week as I was watching television I glanced at my phone, which was charging in the corner of the sitting room.
The screen shone bright, which was odd because I hadn’t touched it since the start of House of Cards twenty minutes earlier.
With a puzzled face I paused the TV and walked over to my phone.
It appeared to have restarted all by itself.
Hmmm, I thought. This is not good.
I waited, but to no avail. Five times I watched as the bright white screen blinked to black and then white again, with the Three logo appearing then disappearing.
At this point I figured I needed help so I consulted Google and then pals and after a few more attempts at ‘recovery mode’ I decided to switch the whole thing off completely – which also took some time.
By this point the phone was roasting.
Clearly a fault with the batter, FML, I thought.
I’d have to bring it back to Three and see about a repair.
This means going to Grafton Street. But it’s Friday night, I don’t want to go to town on a Saturday! Fuck, fuck, fuck.
Right, I thought, I’ll go on Tuesday when I have the morning off from work. I’d have to be in town that day anyway for work. I’ll slip across the Liffey before work.
So my life was phoneless for five whole days.
And what a gift those days were!
I noticed it two days in; I was so so relaxed.
Without my phone: I couldn’t access Facebook or Gmail on command; I couldn’t blot out my surroundings by blaring Future Islands on Spotify; I couldn’t keep abreast of the news. In short, I couldn’t do all the bad things I didn’t realise I was doing.
I could focus. I wasn’t dropping my attention to check updates every five minutes.
Having a phone feels like checking on a dinner that will never be ready.
On Tuesday I took my phone in for repair and now I have a loan phone for a few days, until my phone is fully operational. I can already feel old habits coming back; the quick FB notification check, the ‘oh I might have received an email’ feeling.
I have an embargo for weekdays: no Facebook before lunch, no Gmail until after work, no news unless I hear about it first in work.
A weekend embargo? Like today. Tough, tough, tough.
Do you know anyone who isn’t a slave to their phone?