Wednesday, July 20, 2016

Nothing Is Ever Easy for Technology-Challenged Val

Perhaps you remember last week, when Val sent her phone on a toilet cruise.

Phony is working just fine. After all the drama, trying everything except sitting on Phony's midsection, pumping his chest, chanting, "Out with the bad air, in with the good!" Yes, Phony is resting comfortably at my left elbow, on the counter of my dark basement lair. He had a short convalescence in a fluffy bed of brown rice for 36 hours. Now the patient is as good as new. Or at least as good as he was the day before his cruise, six years out from being new.

Here he was drying out before he retired to his rice bed to sleep the sleep of Rip Van Winkle.

When I wasn't sure if the patient was going to survive, I broke the news to Genius, Phony's former caretaker. We decided that it was about time this ol' Val got herself a new phone. Just because Phony was growing cantankerous anyway, after being handed down from Genius a couple years ago. His back was cracked. He had to have a batteryectomy last summer, due to swelling and bloat and an imminent explosion, according to Dr. Genius.

Genius hooked me up with a Nexus 5X Quartz. It arrived within two days, and its accessories within one. Since Genius was coming home last Thursday to get his tent and sleeping bag for the big solar car race (upon which he embarked today), I figured he could get Phony II all set up. I left my Nexus 5X in its box. You know how much Genius loves his electronics! Anybody's electronics! It's like Christmas to him, to get to open up a brand new electronic gadget. He's been like that since he was five years old. Genius said he could spare 10 minutes to set up my new phone. As a reminder, I sent him a text about an hour before he left college town to head home.

"I have my new phone, a case, a screen protector, and the sim card. They are just lolling around on the kitchen counter, awaiting your tender touch. Uh. Kind of sounds like an intro to tech pr0n."

"Gross. I will be home tonight."

"Okay. The eager Nexus awaits. I hear it's XXXXX..."


"Loosen up, Buttercup! I will stop when I'm done shenanning. Which is now. I should be writing a pitch for my unfinished book."

So...Genius got here and rushed right to the kitchen counter. Except we had moved Phony II into the living room, and set him up with his accessories (all still packaged!) on the coffee table. We redirected eager Genius. He grabbed Phony II's box and gently lifted the lid.

"Huh. You have a European wall charger."

"Is that a problem?"

"No. I don't know why they gave you that."

"Can it use another charger?"

"Yeah. Not one you have in here. But I have enough cables in the car that I can find one that works." Genius held up the white-backed Nexus 5X Quartz for me to admire. "Isn't it beautiful? Look. It's the same as mine, except I have Ice Blue."

"I can't believe you didn't want to get the new phone and give me yours."

"I don't really need a new phone right now." He set to getting my Phony II all set up. Used my laptop for some secret phone-setting-up ritual. "Huh. They sent you the European version. Not the U.S. version."

"So I can't use it?"


"It will have to go back?"


"Great! Everything happens to me! At least Phony is working again. What do I have to do to send this back?"

"I'll print you a return ticket. Just pack the phone, but the label on the box, and give it to UPS." He went to the Amazon page where he ordered the Nexus. "See? It even says it's the U.S. version. I wonder if they're shipping those to everybody." He typed in the reason for return. "Received European version."

So much for my new phone. I decided that I did not really like the Quartz version anyway. But the Ice Blue is sold out on the Google site. I might go with black, or I might wait and see, or I might get it somewhere else. I figure as long as I have it by the time Genius passes through on his solar car trek August 1st, it's all good.

As long as Phony doesn't take another toilet dive.


  1. I would never have figured that out. I need a genius for a son, all mine can do is zillions of push-ups and chin-ups. I almost never need for someone to do zillions of push-ups and chin-ups.

    1. Yeah. I would have tried to plug it in, and wondered what I did wrong. But I would never have tried to do zillions of push-ups and chin-ups. Or even one.

  2. My son refuses to get me a smart phone. I guess he figures it would be too much work for me--& him!!

    1. I hate learning anything new. The smartphone is smarter than me. But my old Phony is losing IQ points by the day. He gets slower and slower and puts the wrong letters in my texts. I'm pretty sure it's the phone's fault...

  3. I wonder if your Europhone speaks another language. The blue is tres chic.

    1. It may understand tres chic, but for sure it does not speak Hillbilly!

      That blue is not so vivid on Genius's phone. At first I told him, "I want a gray one, like yours!" And he said, "It's ice blue. They don't make gray." Or "grey," as my Europhone would prefer.

  4. Miss Mac bought a new phone the other day - it's a very pretty rose gold colour but as she was still locked in to an old contract (with extortionate fees to get out early) she asked if she could transfer her contract to my (pay as you go phone) - Like a sucker I said yes - result: Miss Mac has shiny new phone and mine doesn't seem to be working at all but now the contract is mine so I have to make the payments ...

  5. I can barely figure out the remote control for the TV. My husband says if it has more than two button, I'm lost. Once...he's right!

    1. Thank goodness YOU didn't have to hook up the generator when your power went off!

      Sometimes, somebody (not me of course) will hit the wrong button on the TV remote, and change the picture, or make it unable to respond to my further button-pushing. Not sure what I'll do when The Pony is nine hours away and can't help me.

  6. I'd be relying on our son, our Genius, to help figure all this out.

    1. They were once our dependents, and now we are dependent upon THEM!