Of course I raced back to the restaurant, and of course no one had turned in my phone (Why? Why? Why are people like that? Dude, I would never steal your phone; why would you steal mine?). I returned home dejected, disabled my number, kicked myself for not having Mobile Me so that I could track down the whereabouts of my device, and then promptly settled into that gross, violated feeling that comes from knowing that far too much of your life is likely being perused by a thief.
Next came the intricate dance between Apple, Evil Phone Company, and Bewildered Customer (that's me). The essence was this: if I waited until July, I could save myself $200 on the new 4G. Now, I have been known to suffer bouts of severe fiscal irresponsibility, but in this case I made a Very Good Decision and opted to wait until July. I was forced to unearth my 2G which is at this point, let's face it, basically a relic of ancient Alexandria. Evil Phone Company smugly informed me that I'd have to find an equally old version of iTunes if I was going to use my 2G. To this I said, "Ha! Ha! Haaaaaaaa! I've got you, Evil Phone Company!" Because guess what? My old laptop still has a super old version of iTunes on it! See? See? Sometimes you shouldn't automatically upgrade your shiz!
Once all that was settled, I began to experience withdrawal symptoms because—and this is the least of it—this phone is s-l-o-w. Worse, all I can do is text, check e-mail, and have unsatisfying interactions with the Internets. No New York Times app, no Poetry.org app, no Evernote app, no Wurdle, Facebook, or Twitter apps, no nothing. I had only the faintest idea of how desperately wedded I'd become to the downtime entertainment afforded to me by my phone. My dear, dear phone.
I moped for a few days, but then a feeling of sublime liberation settled into my bones. No longer did I cradle my phone as if it were my fourth child. No longer did I reach for it absentmindedly while standing in line somewhere. No longer did I feel compelled to sneak a peek at Facebook and Twitter just because I could. And, perhaps best of all, no longer were my kids constantly fighting me and each other to get their small, sticky fingers on it. In short, I was free. I am free. Until July 1st.
*I couldn't find credit for the photo above anywhere. If it's yours, I'm sorry.