Well regular readers may remember a posting by me from back in December 2019 after a visit by us to our daughter Sarah in NYC. The last time we were there in fact, from the old days when you could do crazy things like travel internationally. If you recall I’d left my mobile phone at her place and it was the usual pasta paulie horror story about delayed delivery, unnecessary spend, poor communication, surly Royal Mail staff and ultimate redemption and recompense. The title was drawn from a phrase we coined on a Eurocamp holiday we shared, when the kids were younger, with some UK and Dutch friends in the beautiful Dordogne. Again it all sounds like a million years ago when you could do his sort of thing. Anyway we dads spent our days watching over the kids swimming in the pool whilst we played pétanque (boules?), drinking many light beers and getting gently bronzed. Ah happy days. Burt was the Dutch dad and if anything slightly unlucky happened during the game Dennis and I, the English dads, would turn to him and say ‘Why Me Burt?’ It sort of became a catch phrase (you had to be there) and I’ve often thought that it’d make a very suitable title for my yet-to-be released e-book of those many, many unfortunate and embarrassing moments that seem to pepper my life (and provide rich content for this blog). Blimey this a long intro. The point is that this is another story about mobile phone calamity; this time totally self-inflicted.
You have to picture the scene. I use my Apple ear phones whenever I listen to stuff on my iPad or phone and need to keep the noise down if Carol’s working. Not the things that dangle out of your ear like cigarette butts but the wired earpieces. I love them if truth be told because they fit my ears perfectly. You have to understand I’m connected up all day long. However after many years the wire at the jackpoint end had become frayed and it had started to cut out. V annoying. So the only other headphones I had were some beats ones which were bought for me. They are totally street innit but instead of looking cool they make me look like a WW2 radio operator or Ken frigging Bruce …
Never mind they did a job. So I was busy listening away to something on my mobile phone and Caz decided she was off to bed. Kisses etc. And although she’d gone I continued to watch whatever it was – probably a Euro footie match – with my earpieces in. Some time later, and the match was still in action, I had to pop to the loo. I didn’t want to miss a moment so plopped the phone on the shelf whilst I had a pee still headphoned up. No problem. I flushed the loo and then moved to the left to wash my hands and pulled the phone off the shelf. In slow motion I watched as it dropped downwards hitting the sink then bounced enticingly towards the loo. Argghh. No worries I was sure the headphone lead would hold it secure. Well it tugged on my ear and a nano second later the phone tore away from the jack point, bounced not once but twice on the rim and headed down into the flushing water. It was still probably 75% piss. Damn it, why me Burt?
Without a thought I reached into the slop and yanked the phone out. Would I be lucky and get it dried off without damage? I wiped it down, washed my hands of course and held it over the toaster to get it dried out (well what would you use?). Would I be lucky? After 5 minutes I tried to switch it on and heard a faint crackling and then it died. Oh for fuck’s sake. Stupid fucking headphones. Stupid fucking me. Christ it was only Slovakia versus Ukraine or some equally meaningless dull match. And I’m sure it was on ITV too with its crappy commentary. Couldn’t I have just switched it off for 1 minute as I relieved myself? Clearly not. And I’d paid for it.
Do you ever have occasion to shout fuckety fuckety fuck fuck to yourself? Well this was it for me. Just so annoying. I left it out to dry, more in hope than expectation I guess, and next day tried it again but no life, no joy. I took it to a local mobile phone store. What do you think? I asked after telling the young assistant what had happened. It had been quite a lot of years since I’d spoken to a mobile phone salesman. Well first up I ain’t touching it he said. Fair enough. He advised me that it’d be £65 to open it up to have a look and there’d be no guarantee of a fix (in fact it’d be v unlikely). So how much would I like to pay for a replacement? Whoa. Not much sympathy there. He showed me various new and used phones in his cabinet, all used ones priced from around £150 to £350, and promised me £20 off any ticketed price. I shrugged a bit. OK £30 he said before asking what do you want to spend? Ah it was all coming back to me. I was pretty sure I could have negotiated him down by at least £50 as he sounded like he hadn’t sold a phone in 2-3 weeks and was pretty desperate to hook in a sale, any sale. But I said I’d think about it.
As it turned out Caz had an iPhone 6 (same as mine) from her last upgrade so I just switched the SIM card over and a few hours later was up and running again. Thank goodness. The good news is that I’ve kept the old phone so if you’re in the market for a slightly piss-soaked iPhone I could do you a good deal and you’d have some of my DNA traces too. What’s not to like?