Sunday, November 04, 2007

I Really Need a Blackberry™

Here's my problem: We're on a long weekend visit with family in another county. During this visit, the Woodyettes, being consumate performers, do something cute and/or precocious, and Woody says to himself, "I gotta blog that." Then I remember that we're visiting a beach. There is no wireless hotspot at the beach, and even if there were, Woody left the doggoned computer back in the hotel room.

I have a corporate leash cell phone, of course, but I refuse to get into texting with it. For one thing, my thumbs are starting to get that little sharp-arthritic-jabbing-pain thing going every once in awhile, and I can only imagine that getting worse if I resort to texting. So anything that requires me to try and translate my hard-wired QWERTYized brain into a phone keypad is out of the question. I have texted my wife a grand total of, what, ten times or so. She despises texting even more than I do and has responded a grand total of, I think, six times. In three years. We are textually pathetic.

(Note to companies who have automated phone-based information systems: they stink. If you want numbers, I can keypad numbers as fast as anyone. You want alpha characters? Build a web site. Thank you.)

So I need a Blackberry. Blackberrys have somewhat more traditional keyboards on them. I see Blackberry-generated email all the time lately. I built an app at work that management uses for "succession planning." I'm not really certain what "succession planning" is, except that it sounds like something King Arthur used Excalibur to accomplish. ("I'm sorry, Sir Pellinore, thou shalt not succeed me once I extract this Sword from out thy heart." "I understand, my Liege.") So suddenly I'm getting tons of email from managers and executives that say "Generated from my Blackberry." Managers and executives — in my experience, anyway — tend to be 12:00 Flashers for the most part (look it up), so when I see that many of them using a relatively advanced technology to do their email, I realize that I have to have one.

Just think: I could see the Woodyettes do something cute and/or precocious, whip out my Blackberry, and curse loudly because there's no clear signal at the beach. But this is a minor inconvenience. We'll just stop going to the beach. Or — here's forward thinking for you — I could type it anyway, save it, wait until I get a clear signal, then find it (assuming I named it something logical like "Woodyettes Did Something Cute and/or Precocious") and email it to my blog, all in the same amount of time it takes my Dell Core™2 Duo laptop to boot up, find a wireless hotspot, type the entire blog post, and post it. What a savings in labor!

There is a problem, though. Even with a better keyboard, Blackberry keyboards are still about the size of a postage stamp. Okay, maybe a postage stamp from Mozambique that takes up half of the envelope, but still tiny compared to my standard-sized keyboard that barely fits in those laughably small moving boxes they give us at work when it's time to drive the herd to another pasture. So it's likely that I would want to carry a portable keyboard around with me for just such a scenario.

How would this work?

The Woodyettes would do something cute and/or precocious. Woody whips out his Blackberry and begins rummaging around in Mrs. Woody's notorious Black Bag for the portable keyboard. The Black Bag is a canvas bag that we began using instead of a purse as soon as the Woodyettes had gotten to the point of needing no more than one diaper on any given trip. Thus we combined the concepts of diaper bag and purse into a single entity known as The Black Bag®. Anyway, since even a foldable PDA-type keyboard would never fit in Woody's pockets, it has to go in The Black Bag. Unfortunately, so does everything else that we need on this trip. I have, and this is true, been unable to find entire magazines in that bag on occasion. As soon as we get home and Mrs. Woody dumps the contents of The Black Bag onto a table, sure enough, there's the magazine! Amazing! In the meantime, Woody has to root around in TBB for several minutes, searching for the keyboard. Aha! There it is! Then Woody discovers to his chagrin that the foldable keyboard requires a cable of a type not seen since Visor folded and became Palm One™. Woody gets so frustrated about the whole thing that he completely forgets what it was that the Woodyettes had done that was so cute and/or precocious, and the Blackberry hangs limply at Woody's side, looking for all the world like a smallish heart monitor.

Which is, after all, the point of this entire post. The Woodyettes really did do something cute and/or precocious this weekend, and Woody can't for the life of him remember what it was.

I really need a Blackberry™.

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