I found this out the hard way the other day. I already knew it, but I got a fresh reminder all the same. We are potty training our son. He gladly gets up to do his thing, but usually wants to play one of his favorite applications on one of our iPhones when he does. I guess he was sitting different this time. One second he was playing his Grover game (of Sesame Street fame) and the next my phone was dropped into the toilet.
I was standing in with him when this happened. Thankfully. I had the phone out in a couple of seconds and then…the screen went black. I was certain the phone was ruined. I went from zero to frustrated in as long as it took to drop the iPhone in the water. (Note, I was not frustrated with my son over this. He is two and he had no intentions of doing what he did. Complete accident.) My frustration came from the fact that replacing an iPhone that is under contract before the renewal is an expensive ordeal…especially if the iPhone is out of warranty. (Water voids the warranty regardless, but if it is still within the warranty time the Apple Store Genius Bar will replace the iPhone 3G for $200.) My phone was out of warranty. This was not going to be cheap.
It is sad to say that I am as addicted to my smart phone as I am. I realized over the next day that I spend way too much time on the thing. I use it for valid reasons, but my emotions were too tied up with it. So much so that I was considering laying the money down for a new phone that afternoon. I went to the AT&T store. I asked for the early upgrade prices for the new iPhone 4 (I have the 3GS.) I swallowed my tongue when told the price. After recovering I asked the price on an upgrade to another 3GS. I fought back swallowing it again. The cheapest I was going to get out was $300 and that was for a smaller sized model. In the back of my mind I had the thought, “man, I never knew potty training would be this expensive.” I asked the associate if the phones were in stock. He said no and that it would take 5-7 days to receive a new phone.
Again, I am way too plugged into the stream of information. My mind went numb to the idea of having to spend 5 days without my iPhone. (Oh, the horror!) To my credit, I thanked him and walked out….and went straight to Best Buy to see if they had any in stock. Same deal. They did not. Thankfully.
An hour had passed since the phone dropped in the water. I had been able to get it back up to a degree (not recommended, I was a moron for trying to turn it back on with water still in it), but it was doing very funny things and the water damage sensor was on in the upper left corner of the phone. I turned it back off and started thinking. I had an old spare cell phone at the house. It is not like I wouldn’t have a phone. I started to calm. Then, I did something else that should have come to my mind much sooner. I prayed. It seemed silly, but I know God loves me. So, I asked Him to fix my phone. I turned the power on again and it powered up. The screen had some lines going through it, but it wasn’t black anymore. Progress is progress.
Again, I have fried an iPhone in the water before. If you get water on the motherboard they can go out in a flash and never come back. There seemed to be some hope and I had found some peace, so I got home, pulled the sim card, and threw it in a bag of rice. A day later the phone worked without a hitch. God had answered my prayer. I am left on the other side with a few lessons to ponder.
When do I need to use my smart phone? Why do I need to use it? Why did I feel the angst deep inside for not having it with me? My wife gave me a hug and a good reminder…”It is just stuff,” she said. “It will be all right.” She was right. It was not worth getting as upset over it as I did. It was replaceable. Not cheap, but replaceable. It was nice to have something drastic to help me put this issue back into a healthy perspective.