Cell Phone Rules
By: Sandy

I feel as though I am an expert on cellular phone use…I have had one for about 10 years…I use 2000 daytime minutes a month, not including those considered night and weekend minutes…and, I just had to up my text messaging allotment. I have come up with a few cellular phone rules, which I would like to incorporate in my life and have them become universal:

1. This is the most important: If you are disconnected, the person who ORIGINATED the call is responsible for the call-back. When both are calling back at the same time, the only logical result is voicemail until both people realize this and stop calling…do you see how this is a problem?...reconnection is never the outcome.

2. Voice mail needs to be used more sparingly in order to cut down minute-usage. I’m not sure I’m actually sold on this, but check out my idea…If I’m just calling to say hi, perhaps I could just hang up, without leaving a message, and you then assume that means to call me at your convenience. My number will show up on your “missed calls,” so you know I’ve called even though you haven’t heard my voice.  Messages could be used only for specific issues, or questions, or when a call back is necessary. What do you think?

3. The voice mail dilemma brings me to my next topic: text messaging. Everyone should learn how to use the T9 technology. 

4. If you have one question, text it and you will quickly get a reply. This will avoid the awkward, “I just called to ask you one thing, I’m really busy, Hey, I forgot to ask you….blah, blah, blah.”

5. Respond to texts that have a question mark. Otherwise, #4 will not work and we will be back to leaving lots of voice mail messages, which also screws up idea #2.

6. Use your cell only when necessary while riding public transportation (PT) – unless of course, you are on the El where it is loud anyways, and other people are engaged in lively conversation. In the morning, when you are on the bus, and it is dead silent, there is no reason I need to hear you and your buddy replaying the pub crawl/hookups from the night before. At least let me get some coffee first. 

7. If you must converse on the PT, use text messaging whenever possible (see rules 3, 4, and 5).

8. If you know of an area in the city where you ALWAYS lose service, use the phone after you pass that point. If you lose service, refer to rule #1.