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369th Friday Blog Roundup

I am currently on my 4th Blackberry in under a year.  You may be wondering how one person goes through four Blackberries in one year, so let me take you through this process.

  • I buy a Blackberry.
  • I notice that within one week, a bunch of features aren’t working.  Such as the camera.  And the voice recorder.  But I don’t really care because I still have a functioning phone and access to email.
  • I stop having a functioning phone.  Said phone will freeze, and the battery will need to be popped out in order to get it restarted.  And then it freezes again.  And we repeat this process — sometimes two or three times a day.
  • I tell the phone company about it and they say they will send me a new phone.  I feel very thankful that we purchased phone insurance.  The replacement process could not be easier!
  • The “new” phone arrives.  It is sticky and scuffed and scratched.  It is obviously someone else’s old phone.  I call the phone company about this and they apologize.  When they said, “new” they really meant “previously owned.”  They do not ship out new phones despite the fact that when we signed up for the insurance, we were told that if there was ever a problem, we’d get a new phone.
  • Phone company agrees that a phone that is sticky (um… why is it sticky?), scuffed, and scratched is not okay, and they agree to send another phone.
  • The next used phone arrives and we set it up.
  • It works for a few months.  Then the phone begins to freeze for two minutes at a time.  It unfreezes on its own, so while I find this annoying, I do nothing to fix the situation because I have such a seething hatred of my phone company by this point that I would rather not have a fully functioning phone than deal with them.
  • Now the phone begins resetting itself.  Sometimes it does this while I’m in the middle of a phone call and the line goes dead.  Then the screen goes black and the little white bar appears, creeping across the screen like an elderly woman in the crosswalk on a green light.
  • Which means another trip to the phone company store.
  • We go to the phone company where we are told that (1) no one is there who knows anything about Blackberries, but they are happy to Google our problem and see if any solutions are listed online.  (2) Unless we are willing to pay several hundred dollars, we cannot switch to a different type of phone because I still have one more year on this cell plan and they will not waive the new cell phone rule even though I am on my third phone in under a year.  So I will need to pay the full price — not the $200 or so “new contract” price.  (3) The only solution is… to send me another used phone.
  • They send me another used phone.  It takes two hours to set it up.

What have I learned from this experience?

  • Blackberry makes a cruddy phone.  No one should go through four phones in one year.
  • I will never buy a Blackberry again.
  • I will also never buy a phone again that doesn’t have its own technicians at its own store.  Because it is too frustrating to purchase a phone from people who know nothing about said phone and cannot fix it if it breaks.  If the phone maker doesn’t have a brick-and-mortar space (either its own store or technicians set up in a store that deal with that particular product) that I can go to for help, I’m not purchasing the product.
  • I hate my phone company and should leave it.
  • I would find it preferable to not have a phone at all than deal with trying to get a phone to work.

So that’s my first world problem and vent.


After a brief pause, there have been more Creme de la Creme prizes.

Others will be announced next week as they’re claimed.

Don’t forget, we’re nearing that first December 15th deadline for the Creme de la Creme.  If you haven’t chosen your post yet and you want to ensure that you’re on the list when it goes up, you have about two weeks to get it in.  The final cut-off for being on the list at all is a few weeks after that, but I will not be able to get up the posts that come in after December 15th on the list until after January 1st.  So stop procrastinating — the list is amazing so far.  I’ve loved every post I’ve read.


I finally returned the overdue library book (it was the Steve Jobs book), apologized, and paid the fine (only $1.50 for the additional days).  The librarian was lovely; told me that it wasn’t a big deal, and all was well (I am such a self-flagellating rule follower).  But the kicker is that as we were getting out of the car, the Wolvog said, “I really love the book and don’t want to let it go.  Can’t we get it on iBooks?  It would make me feel better if we could always have it on iBooks.”

It would be meta — the book Steve Jobs on Steve Jobs’ iBooks…

I’m not usually this cranky about purchasing books, but seriously, the boy couldn’t have asked four days earlier so I could have returned the book in time and still finished it?


And now the blogs…

But first, second helpings of the posts that appeared in the open comment thread last week as well as the week before.  In order to read the description before clicking over, please return to the open thread:

Only 3 posts last week?  We can do better.  What did you read this week that moved you?  Made you think?  Made you laugh?

Okay, now my choices this week.

Hope Delayed admits that she “just can’t do it today.”  On the way to her 5th Thanksgiving dinner (damn!) she realizes that she has to bail as a matter of self-preservation.  She writes, “I can’t take the pictures with grandpa showing four generations. I can’t take the discussions about who’s kid is walking and who said their first words. I can’t take the pregnancy announcement again. I can’t take all the adorable little kids running around having fun and getting in trouble.”  It’s about finding the balance between taking care of yourself and not wanting to miss out on life.

Words and Pictures has a funny (and sort of by default not-so-funny because it’s so damn true) post about all the things people say to those struggling with infertility.  All done in plasticine.  Need I say more?

Lastly, Family Rocks: The Life of Peg has a beautiful post about things that are easy and hard.  The whole post is moving, but the final one packed a punch: “It’s easy to get things done around the house when I’m by myself.  It’s hard to feel so alone.”  It’s a gorgeous, must-read post.

The roundup to the Roundup: I hate my phone.  Creme prizes galore (and don’t forget to submit your post).  Returned my library book.  And lots of great posts to read.  So what did you find this week?  Please use a permalink to the blog post (written between November 25th and December 2nd) and not the blog’s main url. Not understanding why I’m asking you what you found this week?  Read the original open thread post here.


1 missohkay { 12.02.11 at 8:11 am }

This week I discovered a new blog and loved this post: http://willcarryon.wordpress.com/2011/11/28/et-tu-muppets/
The blogger describes the new Muppet movie as an unexpected trigger for grief. I think anyone who’s experienced infertility or loss will relate. “I hadn’t expected something that made me so happy as a child (and yes, as an adult) to make me so sad for not having the children to share it with.”

2 KnottedFingers { 12.02.11 at 8:13 am }

WOW!! I’m so sorry you are having such a time with your phones. That is crazy. I’ve owned my HTC Incredible for 18 months so far and it’s been dropped on pavement about 30 times and still lives to do everything I need it to (even thought the camera is broken)

And I’m totally probably breaking some untold law here but I’m going to recommend a post by me. But it’s for a good reason


I made a post on how to make ice lanterns. For those of us who live in places with cold winters/Christmas these little lanterns are wonderful to take to the grave of loved ones (our children too) at Christmas Time. <3 <3

Free to make and very easy too

3 Stephanie { 12.02.11 at 8:50 am }

Thanks for the shout-out! 🙂

4 lostintranslation { 12.02.11 at 9:24 am }

I only read the first line of your post I said “Buy an iPhone” (and with all your Steve Jobs related posts I’d have thought you’d have one…) Please do. No Android. You will not regret it. And now I must admit that I didn’t read the rest of your post…

5 loribeth { 12.02.11 at 9:36 am }

I’m having trouble commenting on her blog, but Words & Pictures plasticine post is one of the funniest things I’ve read/seen in a long time. Thank you for featuring it!!

I had a couple of posts in my mind for sharing, but I’ll be darned if I can remember what they are right now. :p I’ll post them later if I remember…

6 a { 12.02.11 at 9:55 am }

I drop my Blackberry daily. Approximately half the time, I drop it so hard the battery pops out. It still works. I suspect your Blackberry model is even crappier than most. I, too, am surprised you don’t have an iPhone.

This post was pretty incredible:


7 Peg { 12.02.11 at 11:29 am }

Thanks so much for the comment on my blog and the shout out here. It’s totally made my day.

8 Sharon { 12.02.11 at 12:07 pm }

I had a BlackBerry for years and liked it. My husband hates his and has had serious phone envy ever since I upgraded to an iPhone this past February.

He is counting the days until he is eligible for an upgrade and can get an iPhone of his own.

9 Denver Laura { 12.02.11 at 1:07 pm }

I see late fines as a small way to raise money for the library that otherwise would come out of my taxes. You did the library a favor by returning the book a few days late. 😉

10 Balancing Act { 12.02.11 at 2:37 pm }

A sticky phone?! That’s disgusting.

I don’t know if there are any phone companies that have technicians in the store any more.

11 loribeth { 12.02.11 at 4:05 pm }

Ah! I found the posts I had in mind!

M. from The Maybe Baby had a great venting post this week about Beyonce and her pregnancy, relating it to the pregnancy of a coworker, & the smug self-assurance of the non-ALI that pregnancy = baby. I think we’ve all felt like this at one time or another…!


And I guess you can tell I’m a big fan of By the Brooke, because I have another post of hers that I’d like to highlight, about the contrast between where she is right now emotionally & how it’s not where she wanted to be:


Next week, on Dec. 6th, it will be one year since Brooke’s Baby Duck, Eliza, was stillborn — so she could use some support right now.

12 Melanie { 12.02.11 at 6:42 pm }

I’ve had fourteen ‘like new replacement” phones in the last year. I got a different kind of phone for the upgrade price only after 14 phones in a 12 month period. They all had similar problems to yours (though, never got a sticky one….gross) and once one came with no speaker. At all. So it would not ring nor could I hear anyone talking to me through it. And it still took 14 tries.

Keep calling. Be the squeaky wheel. Eventually they’ll come around. I’ve got Verizon and had several crappy Motorola Droid/Droid 2s. I would not recommend Motorola, as I had a similar but not nearly as bad (like 3 phones) problem with my old Moto Razr. Samsungs are nice 🙂

13 Shannon { 12.02.11 at 11:16 pm }

My last Blackberry wouldn’t always ring for texts. Which might not be such a big deal, except that when I’m on call, I get my pages as texts. So unless I sat there, staring at my phone, I couldn’t guarantee I’d get every page.

My “new” Blackberry is a battery drain. The battery was dead by 1:30 this afternoon, after charging all night last night. I thought maybe it was the battery in my new phone, so I changed out batteries with my old phone. Nope. It’s the phone.

As soon as my contract is up, I’m getting an iPhone. (Though the whole contract thing makes no sense – if I want to upgrade and am willing to pay, why won’t they let me? Such a bizarre business model.)

14 Seriously?! { 12.02.11 at 11:32 pm }

I am soooooooooooooooooooo having that EXACT issue with my blackberry right now!!! It’s so annoying, and like you, need to wait another year or so for the contract thing for an upgrade.

As for ‘Creme’, my gosh it came up so fast!!! I feel like I don’t have a post that’s worthy enough. Who wants to read about a bunch of complaining about my sister, my mother, or struggles with the adoption process!!! Being back in the classroom has totally affected my blogging life…ba hum bug.


15 Hope { 12.05.11 at 10:41 am }

Here’s a post that really resonated with my about RPL, especially since Lisa’s losses and mine have all be so early.


16 dspence { 12.08.11 at 12:42 pm }


The emotions and pain that surface when filling out medical forms.

“Sometimes it’s hard to believe that before all of this, I was a normal, healthy girl in her 20s who was simply trying to build her family. Now there are so many mental and physical scars, I don’t even know where to begin on these stupid medical history forms. “

17 dspence { 12.08.11 at 3:14 pm }


Letting go of our baby-making fantasies.

As we turn the calendar now for a third set of holidays sans children, I realize I still haven’t let go of so many fantasies I had about becoming pregnant and starting a family… Infertility is the death of fantasies that may have been intrinsically core and central to our self-identities.

(c) 2006 Melissa S. Ford
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