Posted by: Splosher | 10/12/2010

Secrets found within a lost mobile phone…

Being of a certain age (and the less said about this the better) I can recall living through both my pre- and post- teenage years in a less technologically-advanced time period than that of today’s youth, who are unconsciously intertwined with the microcosm of their existence through everyday virtual knowledge. This self-educational data is attained via the solid-state worlds of the internet, mobile ‘phones and computers and is a place where the kids all dwell without a care in the world, safe in the knowledge that old has-beens like me may be able to browse a website or two but this is where our cursory skills abruptly stop (oh, hang on a minute!).

Yes, the young ones’ believe that our elderly stupidity has caused all us old fogies to hang ourselves with our own petards, thus halting any further infiltration into their digital domain; a place that resembles The Matrix (1999), but without any software-based holographic killers or robotic slaughter machines to spoil your day when you’re updating your profile on Facebook. With this tenacity for adapting to the whole silicon-based reality we now find ourselves immersed in during our every waking second, the modern-day “Techno-Yout’s” are steering our species to the next advancement in our Evolution and  it’s this blind oblivion for Humanity’s future that bothers me.

Now, some people back in the good old days did actually have computers – like a Spectrum 48 or a Commodore 64 – if their parents were living Thatcher’s 1980s dream to its fullest and could spend thousands on a jumble of silicon microchips the size of Weetabix and with the processing power of a remedial thick c*nt, but not many. The problem with any advancement is that technology is specific to your own era and any subsequent discoveries then have to be incorporated into your eclectic glossary of what your understanding is based upon. As mention above, computers and their components have grown exponentially over the years, to the current point where something new and cutting edge released on Monday is suddenly outdated and obsolete by Friday, which is especially hard if you’ve spent hundreds of pounds on said item (f**king graphics card, my arse!). This trend is now found right across the consumer market and as it’s consumerism that feeds the Capitalist beast, then new, shiny and advanced is irresistible to the young and vacuous empty shells out there, which can only mean one thing in our culture: mobile ‘phones.

Again, allow me to draw an apt but embarrassingly inter-generational comparison to my early years before the invention of mobile ‘phones. If you were having a good time out with mates and could remember that your parents may be worrying themselves to death regarding your whereabouts, then you could call home using either one of only two available methods at the time: one, use a friend’s parents’ house telephone to call home in the hope of staying out later and then stand before their whole family screaming into the mouthpiece when you’re told to get your arse home immediately; or two, try to use a local, cast-iron red telephone box to ring your house, that is until you realise you’ve no coins left for the call due to chipping in for that shared bottle of Thunderbird you’re swigging from. So, both examples a total disaster and the only outcome guaranteed would be thrashings all round, which is another outdated thing consigned to the bin of yesteryear; a shame really, because we haven’t replaced its welt-delivering effectiveness with anything more than a Liberalised acceptance of adolescent rebellion.

But because today’s kiddie ministers’ gambol in a telecommunication’s paradise, where almost everyone in the entire world is available at the touch of a button on the miniature super-computers they all carry around in their pockets, the transient fools have become blasé about this object’s surety and in doing so, have allowed the ‘Old Ones’ a quick look at what really goes on behind touch-screen fascias everywhere. Any and all information that is stored on a handsets’ internal memory or external card is readable to anyone who has access to the ‘phone in question and this laxness with our own private, risqué pictures or personal, messaged thoughts is where all potential problems lie. You see, only this week I have sneaked a peek behind the youthful curtain of supreme idiocy and it’s a place where no-one seems to give a f**k about anything, regardless of consequence; I now know this to be true because I found one of the disaffected cretins’ mobile ‘phone’s as I walked to work the other day…

The ‘phone in question was a Sony Ericsson W810i Walkman model and it was at the side of the road next to a lay-by, mixed in with dumped fast food rubbish and blackened piles of iced snow. I did a quick double-take when I spotted the metallic orange iridescence of some of the handset’s buttons, as the vivid colour stood out against the surrounding muddied flotsam and so, I took a closer look: my curiosity was rewarded with the sh*t-encrusted Sony Walkman ‘phone, that when the ON button was pressed, did nothing more than appear dead and lifeless. Back home for a quick clean-up and a check in my kitchen drawers turned up a charger and so, a sparkling W810i showing no visible damage was plugged in and left to charge. A couple of hours later I pressed the ON button once again and viola: the keys lit up, the screen flashed on and the introduction tune rang out as the once-lost, now-found ‘phone lived once more. I spent some time running through the damn thing, trying to recall which button did what from when I had my own Sony Ericsson handset – hence the reason for the charger in my drawer – and after some time analysing, scrutinising and perusing the ‘phone, I’d unravelled some of its story.

The ‘phone in question appeared to belong to a young girl named “Sally” from somewhere around the Nottinghamshire area in the UK and judging by the stuff inside its silicon innards, she’d been in love with somebody called “Tony”: she and her boyfriend had met, started seeing one another and then finished all via the world of text-speak messaging; a whole relationship laid bare through misspelt profanity, with just a couple of snatched pictures saved to the memory card as a lasting reminder of their teenage, first-love union. Across almost a year’s worth of Twitter-length notes to one another, this couple’s keyed interjections is a microcosm of how kids everywhere must be suffering their growing-up pains through the medium of technology: tucked away from the prying eyes of their judgemental parents, each and every one of them must try to garner some form of independence for themselves in a vast and confusing world that’s perpetually evolving their youthful demographic away from them as they age like the rest of us. Only now though, these private instances of intimacy exploring Sally and Tony’s feelings and desires for one another, of photos’ capturing frozen seconds of their fleeting, passion-stoked unison have been lost and now lie before me, a complete stranger who’s using their personal material to make a point about the vacuous disregard of youth…

But as I type these words within this entry, an entry originally set to explore this childhood emptiness with texted examples from the ‘phone, I have suddenly and inextricably found myself developing a conscience of sorts. Maybe it’s the fact that I lived my early life in a similar fashion to Sally and Tony, (albeit without a mobile ‘phone to trip me up) and made all the same mistakes that they have made – plus many more – because of one simple, unerring fact: being a teenager is a universal learning curve in all our lives and no matter what generation you belong to, we’ve all gone through the same things, regardless.  

So I’m calling a halt to proceedings and closing this entry in the hope there can be some semblance of morality left for once and secret details can stay secretive to the parties involved. Whether they lost a Sony Ericsson W810i Walkman ‘phone in Nottinghamshire one day, only for it to eventually turn up in Manchester and be found by a blogger looking for a story is inconsequential if the blogger in question is an half-decent person at heart. Without further to do then, please move along as there’s no more salacious gossip to read here and for that, I’m sorry.     

(By the way, I’ve tried calling some of the numbers inside to try and return the ‘phone to its rightful owner, but as of yet I’ve been unable to connect with anyone within the contacts list, so please don’t cast aspersions towards me for keeping the property of someone else!)

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