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Tuesday, January 09, 2007

The inevitable Cell Phone

I'm not a fan of cell phones but the school talked me into buying one yesterday. I would have refused, told them to e-mail me or, at best, that I'd get a home line so I could call Canada. I've morphed into strange looking ice sculptures, in outdoor phone booths. But, I missed a meeting a while back and feel guilty about it. The phone is my apology.

I had a short-lived relationship with a cell phone in Canada. Friends expect to be able to reach you whenever they want. You lose something when you carry a tracking device; the moment can be swallowed by an unwanted call.

In class, a student told me about cell phone buckets. All Korean children over the age of 10 have a cell phone. It's like asking them if they own shoes. At the beginning of the school day they drop their phones into a bucket, and pick them up after their last class. This way, they aren't tempted to text message or play a game during a lecture.

I wish my hogwon had a cell phone bucket. I'd conveniently forget it. "Oh no, that's not mine."

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