There was a time, if I am not mistaken, when this implied reaching for the sports section of USA Today.
But today I realized this carries a new meaning for me, because now down in my handbag (there’s nice old-fashioned term) sits a smartphone, my first, in its new dull red case. Yes: I have joined the ranks of flat phone carriers, or should I say owners, since all our phones use carriers?
Thus too begins a new chapter in my connectivity, and to “reach for the red” will mean digging out the buzzing or ringing device with someone I know (hopefully) on the other end. I admit I am not as comfortable with this as the myriad of folks around me on this train, to take just a small sample. There’s someone who can hold a tall coffee drink and scroll through messages. I see a few using two hands. Another person has a stylus poised, and today, I note, there are two print book readers visible!
Perhaps my communication adaptation is somehow like the cormorants I just now see taking off from their posts in the marsh at GE Riverworks. Touched by the morning sun, they awkwardly manage to flap their wings and rise just above the water. They also avoid the soaring great blue heron, the real master of these skies who drops and blends into the reeds to find his fish with the greatest of ease. Perhaps I, too, am taking off in a slightly erratic fashion. Will I become airborne with this now ubiquitous technology?
It’s early days and given the present workload of September and the jostle of home logistics in full swing, I know I need to give myself more time. Surely I will get to the place I can find my contacts as fast as before. Maybe I will understand and come to appreciate some of the icons I have not yet touched on the home screen. It may take longer for me to feel casual about this, however, coming from grandparents who had party lines and boxy crank phones. Those certainly didn’t fit in the back pocket of anyone’s jeans! But….since it’s only Monday, I think I’ll indulge just a little bit, and imagine my paternal postal carrier grandfather, and my other farmer, one-of-two-identical-twins grandfather, carrying such phones in their jeep and tractors in and around their rural lives. Out at the croquet game or down in the tobacco barn, they could have been early adopters, those two.
Now that I think about it? Definitely.