Most Read: Opinions

direct signup

Today’s Opinions poll

Would you use an app that tells you the partisan affiliation of products you're considering buying?

Submit
Next
Review your answers and share
ComPost
About Petri |  Get Updates: On Twitter ComPost on Twitter |  On Facebook Petri on Facebook |  RSS RSS
Posted at 04:45 PM ET, 10/12/2011

Dear BlackBerry, about that outage . . .


I have one of these, but only ironically. (Francis Vachon - THE CANADIAN PRESS)
The worst part of this BlackBerry outage is that it’s forced me to admit I have a BlackBerry.

RIM’s once cherished handheld is going the way of the dodo, in the sense that it would embarrass you if your friends discovered you were carrying a dodo in your back pocket.

It’s fallen into the Shame Zone of bygone technology. Show up to work with underwear on the outside of your pants? You might be a superhero. Toilet paper trailing off your shoe? Maybe you were dressed as a mummy earlier. But admit to having a BlackBerry and everyone shrinks from you as though you’ve just admitted you have leprosy — or a MySpace presence. “You’re one of those people who doesn’t understand technology anymore,” they say, shuddering. It’s the horrible, creeping modern affliction — far worse than death. Death is something Steve Jobs has, so it must be all right. (Too soon?)

On Twitter, people are already hunting for other uses for the BlackBerry. I hear it makes a terrible flowerpot. If you throw it at someone, it will momentarily stun him but cause no lasting harm. It’s about the right heft for first-time jugglers.

But, BlackBerry, is this really how it ends? For years, we endured the tirades of our iPhone-equipped friends. “Uh, the e-mail server is secure,” we said. “Arianna Huffington has one. And I really like the keyboard! My fingers were not designed for the iPhone! Whenever I type on an iPhone it autocorrects to ‘sensual gaspacho’ and makes my boss look askance.”

We bought the latest phones, even though you insisted on naming them after stone-age technology like the Torch. And now you punish us for our loyalty?

BlackBerry, for the past two years, my life has consisted of a constant, feverish effort to hide the fact that I still carry your Jobs-forsaken device.

 “What, this old thing?” I ask. “It’s just an ironic retro skin for my new iPhone 4S. I got it to go with my record player. But under there I’ve got all the latest cutting-edge technology, hoo boy! Apple’s new voice-activated Siri and everything!"

My friends nod, a bit bewildered. “What is the point of everything?” I ask my phone loudly. “What do the Occupy Wall Street protesters most desire?”

Silence.

“You see,” I say. “It’s thinking.”

And just when I thought I’d be able to get away with it — this outage.

Usually when I send 3 a.m. messages to my boss, it is a poor decision I have come to on my own, not a server error somewhere overseas that has delayed the sending. This is just adding insult to the eyestrain caused by having to squint into a tiny, fickle screen for the Internet.

I’m done with it. So long, BlackBerry. I’ll be using you for my Halloween costume, where I plan to go as Someone Who Knew The Score In 2006. But this is just too much.

And stop flashing at me.

By  |  04:45 PM ET, 10/12/2011

Tags:  technology, oy, blackberry

 
Read what others are saying
     

    © 2011 The Washington Post Company