My BlackBerry was murdered the other day. I killed it. It was a second degree homicide though. There was nothing premeditated on my part.
I didn’t realize I’d lost my trusty companion until after dinner. I retraced my steps, but couldn’t find it anywhere.
The very next morning, though, I discovered the remains. The BlackBerry was lying face down in my usual parking spot. It looked like it had run over an IED in Tikrit or Basra. The unit had pancaked. Gravel was embedded in it like some journalist traveling with the 101st Airborne division. The battery cover had been blown out and was lying some five feet away. And, yet, the darn thing was still flashing its red beacon. Talk about ‘taking a licking and keeping on ticking.’ Wow!
Sadly, though, the BlackBerry needed to be euthanized. It was replaced by Kel, our crack IT manager.
In analyzing my reaction to the BlackBerry’s loss and ultimate demise, I realized that my emotions closely paralleled those of the terminally ill patients chronicled in Elizabeth Kubler-Ross’s seminal work: ‘On death and dying.’ In the book, she identified five stages that one goes through when learning of a terminal disease. They are:
- Denial. When I first discovered I’d lost the BlackBerry, I went into denial. ‘I couldn’t have lost it. It has to be in my pocket. Or under the car seat. Where are you!’
- Anger. As the hours mounted and my search efforts became increasingly fruitless, I became more and more upset: at myself, at the BlackBerry and at life in general.
- Bargaining. I started bargaining with myself. ‘Please let me find the BlackBerry and I’ll go to Church this Sunday. I promise.’
- Depression. I found myself staring blankly at the television screen. I’d hit rock bottom. Even the dogs picked up on my mood and tried to lift my spirits with a quick game of fetch. I told them what to do with their ball.
- Acceptance. By the following morning, I’d accepted the fact that I was no longer in instantaneous contact with the critical and the mundane. And, I was OK with that.
Now that I’m fully wired and living in a 24×7 world again, have newfound respect for, and admiration of, my BlackBerry. The new ‘guy’ looks exactly like the old one. but, he’s dramatically different in a fundamental way. He’s like a raw recruit who’s just sent to the front lines. My old BlackBerry had been part of the frontline invasion. It had been severely injured in the line of duty but, like a true soldier, it never deserted his post.
Readers: a moment of silence, please, as I play ‘Taps’ for my dearly departed BlackBerry.