Thursday, July 8, 2010

Lunchtime Post: A Proper Blogger

I have come up with an experiment.  I have an hour to kill at lunch and ever since discovering our break room has wireless, I’ve brought my laptop to work each day with the expressed purpose being to work on jokes, blogs and stories, but surprise surprise I’ve spent just about every lunch endlessly browsing Facebook and Wikipedia-ing everything from poison ivy to assorted brands of General Mills cereal.  I tend to lose focus, in other words. 

So I’m going to try to maximize my lunch break by speed-writing a blog and posting it that same day. Hopefully I can pull this off a couple times a week, and that will help people maintain their sanity during the increasingly long intervals between longer posts, the ones I write at home in my underwear, like a proper blogger.  Be advised however, that these Lunchtime Posts, as I have just now christened them, will be harried, and as such, not the 1500 word, multifaceted blog stews of which you perhaps have become accustomed. No, these will be whatever comes to mind and will be written in between spoonfuls of Cup-o-Noodles and falling peanut butter.  

ANYWAY, this is my first Lunchtime Post, and seeing as I’ve already wasted 15 minutes explaining it, I best be begin. This is what comes to mind.

I was foraging thru my cell phone on the subway today (cell phones become nothing but digital phonebooks without service, yet I can’t help compulsively checking it on the ride in) and I stumbled upon a seldom-used feature: the template function. The template is a feature in just about any cell phone, and it’s basically nothing but a short list of pre-equipped text messages that can be utilized by the texter in a hurry. The messages are usually what the phone deems to be the most commonly used texts, generic statements like: “Running late, be there in a few” and “Where are currently located?” etc.    I can’t understand why anyone would be in such a hurry that the 11 seconds saved sending the template would actually be helpful. But the templates do have one redeeming feature: they can be edited. So if I’m always running late to work, I can edit my templates to say “Running late, Mr.Tewilliger, be there in a few,” or if I can never find my dealer I can modify it to “Where are you currently located, White Rabbit?” and the fun can literally go on and on.    But the most fun I found, and what kept me away from my book on the commute, was to completely edit the template to near nonsense, to make the messages so absurdly specific they can almost certainly never be used. After a few stops on the A train, I had completely modified my templates.

I found the 7th template Just checking in… to be completely useless and so I changed it to the far more direct Have You Been Bee-Keeping Again?!  You never know when that may come in handy.   I totally deleted the lame What are you up to? and replaced it with Don’t Tell Margaret, but Charles is smoking again, and I can’t tell you how many times I’ve to laboriously type out this text in the past.  Other templates include I left the steaks defrosting in the sink. No more salad for dinner! and The car wouldn’t start this morning, I’d call mother for a ride…If she were still with us L

These will never be used of course, but at the very least, if someone finds my phone after I die, they will assume I lived a very interesting life.

On this subject, I have always thought that juice bottles, which are fond of placing esoteric phrases on the bottoms of their caps, should adopt my program. Rather then having your Cranberry Tea’s cap advising you to Smile! Today is a new day why not have it proclaim Dan, do not got to work today, Chelsea is very upset? For millions of tea enthusiasts, this cap will invoke only head scratches, but one day, a Dan will have a hankering for Cranberry Tea, and that Dan will have a job, and at that job will be a woman named Chelsea and wallah! Dan’s life is changed forever.

And now time is running out on my lunchtime post. I think this went well. Expect more. (Unless you really hate them. So let me know.)

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