Beyond the Books

Your Guide to student life

Sunday, April 29, 2012 2:56 p.m.

Just Joshin’

A look at the world through my eyes. Well, just part of the world.

Josh Perlman

Josh Perlman. Hatchet File Photo

I’ve never been the most up to date with modern technology. I was still playing my PlayStation while all my friends were enjoying their nifty little GameCubes and Xboxes.

But lately I’ve been feeling a bit left out of this strange phenomenon of the smartphone.

I was one of the last of my friends to get a cell phone back in middle school, and I’ve continued to feel perpetually behind the times when it comes to my mobile devices.

My first phone was a black Pay As You Go phone. My parents thought having me pay for every individual minute I spent talking to someone was a good way to teach me responsibility. What they didn’t know about was the social stigma that came with the pathetic excuse for communication.

I quickly earned a reputation as the only member of my family not included in my family plan, and my inappropriately loud Jimmy Eat World ringtone drew attention to the fact that I was one of few people in my grade who still hadn’t bought the RAZR.

I was beyond excited when that phone died from natural causes – my hands – and could only hope the replacement would put me more on par with the rest of society.

The replacement was worse. It was called The Oyster for the sole reason that it was white and oval-shaped. It was designed to look like a crustacean but ended up looking like a deformed egg.

This pansy-ass device stuck with me until I was 16 years old, at which point my parents promoted me to a slider with light-up buttons. I was overjoyed. Within a week or two, I had filled the phone’s camera to capacity with pictures of myself holding up peace signs.

I kept that baby through October of my freshman year of college. When I was due for an upgrade, I went with my mom to the store feeling nervous about my fate. I had a selection of free phones to choose from, the best of which was a slender, touch-screen called the Laser.

I was immediately attracted to its sleek and shiny appearance, not to mention the badass name. Most of all, I was thrilled that my new phone had access to the Internet. It may not have been an iPhone or a Blackberry, but it had most of the same capabilities.

Of course, my dad warned me I had to pay for every second I spent on the Internet and should avoid using this feature. My first Friday night out with the phone, I had three too many margaritas and spent two and a half minutes online making Facebook statuses like “How do you solve a problem like Maria?”

My dad called the phone company the next day and deactivated my Internet access.

But as the years go on, I realize that it doesn’t matter if I don’t have the next best piece of technology. My Laser and I have had some great times together, and I wouldn’t change that for the world.

And even though I can’t use FaceTime or BBM, I’m grateful for my phone because it’s kept me humble. Plus, I can drop it on the ground and it’s not a big deal at all.