My wife and I recently made a quick visit to my Dad’s house to pick up a few items of essentially sentimental value before the property is lost to foreclosure (a long story I don’t need to get into really) as an aftershock of his passing over a year ago. It was an emotional walkthrough of the various items that for whatever reason where stored away, forgotten an unloved, in some cases for as much as 3 decades.
One of the more curious oddities we discovered was this “ancient” Motorola MicroTAC cellular phone. This particular device, first manufactured circa 1996, was my family’s first cell phone. I remember using it on a few occasions, but it wasn’t really something I had a lot of contact with. I imagine the service fees were ridiculous by today’s standards (I remember my first cell phone in 2001 costing me well over $600 one particular month because I used it like a regular phone) and I imagine the device itself wasn’t cheap either.
This particular item was one of many random things we came across, most of which remain unloved simply because of their obsolescence. My dad was always a bit of an electronics pack-rat, but I never expected to find anything this old still wasting away in his basement — and amazingly, this did not represent the oldest device we found; only the oldest one I recognized from my childhood.
I have found it an interesting exercise to contemplate how, much like this cell phone, all things pass into worthlessness, obsolescence, and each in their own way, death. Even if I could supply power to this phone, would any cell network today be able to talk to it? It is really nothing more than a curious-looking paperweight, except perhaps that it has served me as a subject for thought.
Among other things, we also collected several large containers of photographs — some clearly dating back quite a bit before my birth and many of which I cannot recall having seen before. My wife and I will go through these at some point and will certainly share what we find with the extended family, so if you’re reading this wondering when you’ll get to see them, please be patient. The only answer I can offer right now is “I don’t know.”
Think for a moment about all of the things you keep in your homes which are usually forgotten and unloved. Consider why they are kept, and how all things are similar in that someday everything falls into the same manner of disuse and decay no matter how much it was at one time loved.
Thank you for reading. Please be well, my friends.