Don’t disrespect my flip phone

In the Light

Last year I broke down and bought a smartphone.

Not because of peer pressure or because I wanted to look cool and hip.

I left my flip phone in my pants pocket and washed it.

So, you know being cool and hip is like … Impossible for me to accomplish.

Do you know how hard it is to find a good flip phone?

It’s like … Dinosaurs or really good ink pens. They just don’t make them anymore.

I miss my flip phone.

I was at my niece’s wedding a couple of years ago and all the guys in the family were comparing smartphones.

You know how guys are — always trying to up the ante, always trying to prove who’s the Alpha Dog.

Cars, houses, lawn mowers, entertainment systems, sports accomplishments, and phones.

I don’t care how impressive your bragging is about that M1 Abrams Tank you found on Craigslist and traveled to North Dakota to pick up, the next guy up will have something bigger, faster, stronger.

“Yeah, the mileage sucks, but traffic is not a problem.”

Can you imagine what it would be like if guys carried purses or wore high heels?

“A Dung and Blackbeany purse? I paid twice that for my Whipshot Country Cousins bag and matching wallet. And it’s made from the skin of some endangered animal. Polar bear maybe.”

So when we started phone bragging, I didn’t bother. I knew I had the “least impressive” phone, so I just kept it in my jacket pocket.

I mean, all these guys are standing around and … Talking about their smartphones.

Because having a smartphone is …


They all looked the same to me, even the ones that shot laser beams.

“This puppy has 500 megawhistles and backsplash protection, AND a digitized voice motorfunkmeister.”

Or something like that.

“When I got this one and had them include the ‘Find the Doughnut and be a Hero’ app.

“For free.”

“If I misplace this baby I just clap my hands and it chirps like a bird and flies to me. Not to mention the security for this bad boy was designed by the Israeli Mossad and tested in combat conditions. Oh, and it also comes in hot pink.”

“I watched the Mars landing on my phone … As in Mars was landed on by another race from a distant planet in a distant galaxy.”

“I invented the better mouse trap with my phone.”

“I’ve killed people with my phone.”

And then they looked at me.

“What kind of phone do you have?” someone asked me.

I pulled out my flip phone.

After the laughter died down I was asked, “Seriously, where’s your phone?”

Then I showed them the impressiveness that can be, and is, a flip phone.

I opened it, pretended I just finished a very important call, and then …

The anticipation is the best part.

I used one hand and flipped it shut … Very loudly.

Sorta like James Bond would do if he was forced to use a flip phone.

You know, if the United Kingdom didn’t have any funds for its “00” spies and they had to wear clothes from Kmart or whatever and those funky pleather sneakers.

Sorta like spies from third world countries dress.

I looked at my brothers, my nephews, my cousins, male members of the groom’s family, my son … And gave them my best, “Beat that” look.

They looked at each other.

They looked at the ground.

They looked at the sky.

They looked around like they were trying to locate a bathroom.

But they didn’t look at me.

I know when someone is embarrassed for me when I see it.

Seriously, have you met me? I’m aces at getting that look. It’s my forte.

“Anyway, I trekked around the world with just a bag of peanut butter sandwiches and my phone,” someone said.

“Because my phone opens up into a completely furnished tent.”


Didn’t they see me snap my flip phone shut in the just coolest moment of their lives?


Didn’t they see the James Bond-like glint in my eye after doing so?

“You know,” I said. “Flip phones are very stylish. Very retro. Very Vintage.”

I was not going to give up that easily.

“And women think they’re sexy,” I quickly added when I saw they weren’t buying my “retro” and “vintage” argument.

“Especially (dramatic pause) … When you snap it shut with one hand,” I pointed out.

They looked at each other.

They looked at the ground.

They looked at the sky.

They looked around like they were trying to locate a bathroom.

“I almost bought that phone that comes with the flame thrower and ninja skills, but I’m waiting until the stealth version comes out next week,” someone broke the silence.

I was getting a sinking feeling, so I happened to casually mention to my son, Drew.

“By the way … Are you still driving with me next week to Utah to pick up that M1A2 Abrams Main Battle Tank?”

I think someone in the groom’s family mentioned having the M1 Abrams earlier in the day. I went for the upgrade and added “Battle.”

I know how to play this game.

I looked around and was greeted by slack-jaw open mouths. And drool. Lots of it.

Then, again very casually, said, “Yeah, bought that bad boy from someone off Craigslist. Bought it for a song. Even comes with an instruction booklet so I don’t accidently run over my neighbor’s cat … Or blow up his house.”

Much laughter on my part. Not so much for the other guys.

That taught them to disrespect my flip phone.

Still, I miss that thing.