A Conversation with Mum About The Concept of Off
Mum: My phone keeps going off
Every single one of my family members, except my father who is in the clear because he is strategically dumb about tech, (it’s like selective deafness only about computers and phones) leaves the room. I was too damn slow.
Me: What do you mean off?
Mum: Off. Not on.
Me: Your phone keeps turning off?
Mum: That’s what I said.
Me: You mean by itself?
Passing nephew: It can’t do that Nan.
Mum: Well it does.
Me: So you’re turning it off?
Mum: I’m not.
Me: So it’s out of battery?
Mum: It’s not.
Me: Tell me what happens?
Mum: I’m on a call and it just goes off.
Me: Oh, that’s a call drop out.
Mum: What does that mean?
Mum: Remember you had them on your old mobile? Everyone did from time to time. The networks are better, it doesn’t happen so much anymore.
Mum: No that’s not right. It’s charged.
Nephew: Oh Nan. She doesn’t get it does she?
Me: You explain
Nephew: Well there’s Voda and Telstra and Optus and they’re your networks.
Nephew: That’s it.
Me: Thanks for nothing, dude.
Mum: Leave him alone.
Me: Someone pays school fees for that. Your call will drop out if your phone isn’t connected to the network.
Mum: Well connect it then.
Me: No, it is connected already. Remember you have bars that show you how much coverage you have.
Mum: Like my kindle.
Mum: You know my kindle—
Me: One tech support query at a time.
Mum: So make it stop, the dropping out.
Me: I can’t make it stop. It’s a thing.
Mum: I paid your school fees. Ridiculous. I’ll put it on the charger again then.
Me: No. Er. Yes, good, can’t hurt.
Mum: Now I keep losing the weather.
Me: Because you don’t put the phone to sleep before you put it in your bag.
Mum: I’ll put you to sleep. Make it stop doing that.
Me: Remember when I said don’t get a screen based phone. That.
Mum: Too late.
Me: You have to make the screen black before you put it in your bag.
Mum: How does putting it in my bag make the weather disappear?
Me: Scientist have studied this problem.
Mum: Have they?
Nephew: Oh Nan.
Me: When the screen is live and you rub it against something it will make a change to it. Like when you’d sometimes phone me for no reason because I was the last number you’d called.
Mum: Oh yes, that was funny.
Me: Hysterical. Before you put the phone in your bag, press the button and make the screen black.
Mum: I know how to do that. I just don’t get why I have to.
Me: Because the weather disappears if you don’t. Think of the scientists
Mum: Stop it. Shows me the elaborate two handed procedure of putting the phone on standby.
Nephew Awkward much
Me: You could just, hold it like this and press it like this. Never mind.
Mum: Put the weather back and get rid off all these things, I don’t know what they are, icons. Get rid of them. And all these things (pages and pages and pages). You should just make it habit to clean up my phone, every week or so. Also there’s a photo of your father. I don’t know how it got there, it’s terrible too, get rid of it.
Mum: Well it is.
Dad: Maybe it’s the photographer
Mum: Wish I could turn your network off.
Mum: Don’t get old, kid, don’t get old.