Cell phones…

 The other day Liz was amazed that I had a cell phone in the early 1990’s.

Let me tell you why I got one.  

It was 1964.   I was 4 years old and my sister was 3 (and my other two sisters hadn’t been born yet).  My mom was a stay-at-home mother.  Once a week she’d load us into the car and drive to her cousin’s house, about 45 minutes from our house.  Cousin was also a stay-at-home mother, but her children were school age.   My mom and her cousin would spend the afternoon bowling.  I think they were in a bowling league.

One time, as we were headed home, the car got a flat tire.  My mom didn’t know how to change a tire, so she had to walk  until she found a pay phone (remember those?) and was able to call for help.

The icing on the cake?  While she was dealing with the car, I noticed a sore on my finger.  The next day I came down with chicken pox.

Not my mom’s favorite day …

So it was 1993 or 1994, and everyone had pagers. Someone would page you, and then you’d have to find a phone and call the person who paged you.  And then a friend of mine got a cell phone and started making jokes about how her pocketbook was ringing.

Jen and Becca are 20 months apart, not much different than me and my sister.  I’m a mom with two very young children and I’m thinking about how my mom got stranded …

So I’m walking through the underground shopping concourse at the World Trade Center and there’s a kiosk from what was then New York Telephone/NYNEX (now part of Verizon) and they have cell phones.   It’s the size of a brick and has the battery life of a flea.  I buy the phone as insurance that I won’t be stranded with two small children.  I keep it turned off; when you page me I’ll turn on the phone and call you back.

Obviously the technology improved rapidly.  And now I am dependent on my smart phone.


  1. My husband was a tech junkie and had one of those giant cell phones. Funny thing though is much later he didn't care for smart phones. Maybe he realized it was too much of a good thing.

  2. My husband and I were late to cell phones. At least we totally skipped the size of a brick era. We used TracFones for several years. Fun fact, I didn't get a smartphone until my mother in law, who was in her 80's, had one. That convinced me. I've never looked back.

  3. Yeah, anyone who I knew who had one in that era used it for emergencies. And in the late '90s, too. I bet it gave you peace of mind.

  4. Before that there were the brick "mobile" phones that were only "mobile" because they were hooked up in the car! My husband had one. Huge thing! Pretty sure they are collectible now. The first one in my family to get a cell phone was my daughter, because at age 12 she was doing community theater and I'd leave her at rehearsals.


Post a Comment

Popular posts from this blog

It’s all coming back to me now

Music Monday

Ultimate Blog Party!!!!