Entries in the “Bonehead” category
My experience destroying iPods and phones is just short of legendary (example 1, example 2, example 3, example 4, and example 5). Just when I thought I had kicked the habit of dropping them into toilets, off balconies, and in front of buses, I managed to one-up myself.
In May, New York Magazine listed some of the items in the waters around New York, and I’ll be letting them know that they can add a red iPod nano (Gen. 2) to the list.
I was out for a run on the East River Esplanade, and as I often do, I was holding my iPod in my hand. For some reason, I believe to scratch an itch, I tried to transfer the iPod between hands, and was less than successful. It fell, broke free from the headphones, and bounced over the edge. By the time I had stopped my forward momentum (no easy task) and made it to the edge, it was no where to be seen. It had disappeared into the murky depths of the East River, never to be seen again.
You wake up at 8am on a Sunday morning and you reach for the last coffee pod in your apartment. As you approach the coffee machine, you drop the pod on the table, and it rolls off the table into the most inaccessible section of your kitchen. To access this part of your kitchen, and retrieve the increasingly important coffee pod, you have to move the table; a feat that should only be attempted after you are fully awake. Oh the irony.
Hemingway once said he wrote his best work in just six words. I’ll give my latest phone woe a shot:
Dropped BlackBerry. Bus. Should’ve had insurance.
BlackBerry 8830 after being run over by a bus
What happens when you drop your BlackBerry in front of a moving NYC MTA bus? Well, let’s just say that the bus wins.
I was walking home from dinner and stopped at a red light on Second Avenue. I felt my BlackBerry buzz on my waist, so I reached up under my coat and started to pull it out. Somehow, it got loose, plummeted to the ground, and bounced its way into the street, right in front of an oncoming bus. I watched helplessly as my BlackBerry was run over by the behemoth.
Well, not really, but you get the idea. Let’s start at the beginning:
7:00am - E-mails from work wake me up.
7:30am – Log into work and see there is a problem with a NIC card on a server.
8:00am – Problem at work solved. I’m wide awake.
8:05am – Decide to actually get out of bed and start the day (way too early for that normally).
8:15am – While enjoying first cup of coffee, decide to order a waffle from the diner since I had a craving for it.
8:35am – Waffle arrives. I place tin with waffle in it on kitchen table. Pour second cup of coffee. Put second cup of coffee on top of fridge (normal spot where I pour the milk into it).
8:36am – Open tin with waffle in it. Take waffle out and place on plate. Open fridge to get syrup (real maple syrup from Vermont—the best!). Grab syrup, open it, pour some into coffee. Close syrup. Place back in fridge. Grab milk. Open milk. Start to pour milk onto waffle, but catch myself just before it comes out. Wonder why I’m doing that.
8:37am – Open fridge, and remember that I was holding the syrup bottle a moment ago. Look back at waffle and find there is no syrup on it. Wonder where syrup went. Look at coffee cup. Say, “No way,” to myself. Look in coffee cup. See weird slick on top of coffee. Sigh loudly.
See, the butterfly effect in it’s full glory. A server NIC dies, and because of that, I put syrup in my coffee. At least it sort of makes sense.
Now if I could only figure out why I keep putting shaving cream on my toothbrush in the morning…
Well, it’s been more than a week since the incident and it seems to be fine. One thing I have noticed is that when I go out in the morning, and I go to turn it on, pressing the “play” button does not do anything. I have to press the “menu” button, have the Apple logo show up for a moment, but then it goes back to exactly where it was when it was last shut off, even if it was in the middle of the song. I don’t remember if it did that before the incident, but I know that the regular iPod does not do that.
Today was a good test for the iPod.
When I woke up, the display of the iPod was back to normal. The scroll wheel was also functioning fine. If I didn’t know that this iPod had been in the toilet for a few minutes, I wouldn’t know there was anything wrong with it.
I had to go into the office today and used the iPod for the 25 minute walk there without a problem. After finishing in the office, I walked to the fish store and back to the office (total of 60 minutes) and the iPod functioned flawlessly. I also listed to it on the way home from the office without issue.
I’ll need to test it for a few more days before I feel it is fine, but with today’s test, it worked flawlessly.
It’s been charging a couple of hours now and the display now shows the large full battery icon and it says “Charged” at the top. I unplugged it from the USB cable, and it seems to be working fine right now. The scroll wheel is still a bit weird and the display hasn’t changed from before, but it is playing music.
I have resisted temptation to try the iPod for several days, and today was the day that I said would be enough time for it to dry out. In my mind, if it wasn’t dry after four days, then it wasn’t going to get dry.
I went into the kitchen, picked it up, and carried it into the living room. I pressed the “play” button and watched the display do nothing. I pressed it again, and again, nothing. Damn.
Then, for grins, I pressed the “Menu” button, and to my delight, the display lit up with the Apple logo. It was not backlit, but it was on. After a few moments, the display showed a large battery with one bar on it. It didn’t do anything else. I assumed that that meant that the battery was low.
I went over to the computer and plugged the iPod in. This display lit up and displayed the red circle with the slash thought it and the warning to not disconnect. Good sign. Very good sign.
iTunes on the computer found the nano and synced with it, as if there was nothing wrong. After it finished syncing, I ejected the iPod from iTunes, but left it connected to the USB cord so it could recharge the battery. I picked up the iPod and started to try to use it. The menu navigation was a bit weird. Sometimes it jumped very quickly between menu items and other times, it didn’t move at all, but when selecting a playlist to play, it played without a problem. Yay!
The display looks a bit weird. It looks like half the display in the center is a different shade or intensity than the surrounding area. I guess the display still has a bit of waterl in it. I guess the weird menu navigation is also due to water interfering with the sensor. I tried to get a pic of the display, but it didn’t come out.
I’m going to leave it plugged in for a while and see if the battery charges and if it will work off the cable.
After replacing the cordless phone lost in a previous incident, I was very careful not to bring the handset anywhere near a place that it could try to escape. This new phone would spend it’s entire life in captivity. I never thought it would resort to suicide.
This time I was on the phone with a friend. She was having some sort of problem, and for some reason, I was the therapist (although I was not being paid). I had been on the phone for quite some time at this point, and I really had to go to the bathroom (#1). There didn’t seem to be any natural rhythm to the conversation where I could break in with my natural urges, so to save time, I got up from the sofa in the living room and walked into the bathroom before cutting her off in mid-sentence to explain my problem. I explained that I had to take a quick bathroom break that I would call her back. She said not to bother, and that I could put her on hold.
As I pulled down my shorts with right hand, I used my left hand to hit the hold button and place the phone on the sink, directly to the left of the toilet. Since I really had to go, nature started flowing the moment my shorts were clear of the “faucet”. Being that it takes brainpower to aim, I was not concentrating as hard as I could on placing the phone down on the sink—and you guessed it—the handset took the plunge.
“Crap!” was the rather ironic exclamation that escaped my lips as I stared at the handset, now fully immersed, in the toilet.
After finishing my business (I told you, I really had to go), I had to fish around in a closet to find my backup corded phone, which is there for just such an emergency. I called my friend back, explained the situation and asked for advice (the tables were now turned!).
She said that I should take the phone out, wash it off and if it was working, use it.
If the phone from Oops #1, which was surrounded by coffee grinds, tuna cans, etc., in plastic bags, was not going anywhere near me, then this phone could only be used if I was wearing a Level A Bio-hazard suit.
A new cordless phone was procured a few days later. This new phone will not be used in the bathroom.
I was on my way to work one day, and as I descended the subway steps to the N, R, and W line, I noticed that a train was waiting on the platform with the doors open. I ran down the steps and toward the door to the train.
Being that it was the morning and my mind was not up to speed yet, I forgot that I’m 6’6” and on those lines I must lower my head a little bit to get in without knocking myself out.
There were two hits.
The first was my head hitting the top of the door. The second was my body hitting the ground. I was stunned that one moment I was running for the train, and the next I was looking up at the ceiling of the platform with pain coming from my forehead. The lower half of my body was in the train, while the rest of me was on the platform.
The doors tried to close, but my waist prevented them. Someone on the train asked if I was OK. I said that I thought so as I tried to raise myself from my inclined position. I managed to get up and get in the car before the doors tried to close again.
I developed a small bump on my head that lasted for six days as a result of the incident.
I’ve learned that I should no longer run for a train. If I make it, I make it. If not, another one will be along in a few minutes.
One evening while cleaning up after dinner, my phone rang. The cordless phone handset was sitting in the base near the front door. As I went over to pick it up, I noticed that there was a bag of garbage near the door that I had neglected to take out to the chute. I picked up the phone, and started talking to the friend that had called.
As I was talking, I reached down and picked up the bag of garbage in one hand. I snuggled the phone between my ear and my shoulder so that I would have my other hand free to open the door, which I did. I then walked the fifteen feet to the garbage chute on my floor, opened it, put the bag of garbage down it, and then watched in horror as my phone leaped from my ear/shoulder, and followed the bag of garbage down the chute.
“Shoot!” I exclaimed.
Thinking that my friend would still be able to hear me, I yelled, “I’ll call you back!” down the chute. I then hurried back to my apartment, pressed the speakerphone button on the cordless phone base and said, “Hello?” wondering if my friend was still on the line.
“What happened?” was their reply. “It sounded like you fell down a few flights of stairs.”
Well, it was now time to replace a perfectly good cordless phone. I suspect that the handset was tired of being cooped up in my apartment all day long, and made a break for freedom. Too bad it’s freedom would be spent surrounded by bags of old cans of tuna, orange peels, coffee grinds and paper towels with God-knows-what on them.
Even if the handset did work after the fall, I didn’t want it anywhere near my ear or lips.
One nice summer evening I was at a get together at a friends apartment. The apartment’s on the 26th floor and has a balcony with a very nice view. I was on said balcony enjoying the view and talking on my cell phone, when my buddy (who we’ll call “Einstein”) came up behind me and slapped me on the back, to say “Hi”. This slap cause my phone to leap from my hand, hit the balcony floor, and fall off the balcony toward the courtyard below.
I never actually saw the phone hit the courtyard because it was dark. When I got down to the lobby of the building and asked the doorman if he heard something fall into the courtyard, he told me that the cellphone was in a lot of pieces as he handed me a few of the bigger pieces.