How To Lose A Phone in 10 Hours

Antique oak "double phone" from earl...
Proof of life before mobile phones. I really miss it. Image via Wikipedia

Let’s say you forgot your phone somewhere. Left it on your desk at work/in your locker/in a field/dropped it down a toilet.

This is what you might do while you waited to retrieve your phone, if you were in this purely hypothetical situation:

Call it.  Five times.   To make sure it isn’t in the house.  Curse silent-mode.  Stare at your bag, where your phone should be.   Lift the  bag and call your phone again, to see if you can ‘feel the vibrations’.  The only thing you feel is like an idiot.

Panic.  What if people are trying to reach you and your phone is whispering feebly somewhere, unanswered?  Let’s just say, as an example, that somewhere is on your desk at work, where you are not.

Get real.  You know your partner is indeed coming home.  No, he did not choose this night to get run over by a bus only because you don’t have your phone, and no one could reach you if he was in traction in a hospital across town.

Breathe, and feel free.  All the important people, parents/your decidedly unbroken partner/ friends/hospital staff have or could get your home number, and call you there.  Everyone else is on Facebook.  Even your Great-Aunt who lives in Florida.  Who is actually great, and really does live in Florida.  You are not disconnected.  From anyone.

Rejoice when your partner comes home.  For the purposes of this story, let’s call him Sarge.  Ask him to call your phone, just in case it hasn’t slipped under a book.  Because you just may live somewhere where everything lost can be found under a book.  No phone, lots of books.  Pretty good deal.

Aforementioned boyfriend might ask, ‘Have you lost your phone?’  And you might answer, ‘No, we’re on a break.’

Watch the news.  You can still do that, on something they call the television.  Senseless murders and stupid taxes still happen, phone or no phone.

Replace Angry Birds with Chopped, on this groovy thing they call the Food Network.

Go to bed and finish your forty-first book of the year.  You would know this if you happened to be counting them.

Stop reading.

The next morning, you might go into work.  On your day off.   Just to pick up your phone.  The one you may have left on your desk the day before.  Your co-workers may have been expecting you.  Because they read about your lost phone on Facebook.

This post is based on based on true events.  Maybe.


148 thoughts on “How To Lose A Phone in 10 Hours

  1. In the event that really did happen, it could be taken as a sign that one can live without one’s cell phone. For one night. Without keeling over. Or being struck by lightning. But there’s always the chance that that is the phone number The Millionaire has and you just lost out on never having to do anything you didn’t want to do again. The trials and tribulations of this life!

  2. Hahah! I love this! It’s so sad how heavily dependent we are on technology, but let’s face it, that’s really what happens when we “misplace” our phone! It’s good thing you can’t “misplace” a laptop…

      1. Maybe you can’t misplace a laptop (yet!) but definitely either of two can happen: the AC connector can break down when the battery is low or “They” (it’s always “They”) can turn off the Internet. Temporarily of course, but still it’a a trauma ;). Oh, both are based on true events, unfortunately. Great story, by the way.

  3. Ah ha ha, this sounds like something I would do. And congrats on Freshly Pressed. If I remember, that’s how I first found your blog … so hopefully other people will find it the same way I did 😉

    1. Ha! And I just have to say, my boyfriend might have been reading these comments with me, he saw your icon and shouted ‘Penguins!’ He loves penguins. Thank you for the fitting comment!

  4. I’ve had an iPhone for a year…but never lost it. Not once.

    Until I downloaded this super-cool app called “Find my iPhone.”

    Then, three days later, it was gone, yet remarkably trackable.

    Now my question: Did I lose it because subconsciously, I knew I could since I now had tracking software? Or was it just some cruel trick of the universe?

    And btw, the existence of strange tricks of the universe is the philosophical underpinning of my latest blog post — again, coincidence? 😉

    Congrats on finding the phone, BTW…

  5. Time changes so quickly.
    15 years ago I traveled around Mexico for a couple of months. I had an analog camera with 36 photo chances, no cellphone and still my mother did not worry herself to death.
    Now she worries herself to death if I don´t answer the phone for few hours.
    Is that what technological (r)evolution is all about?

  6. done, done and done! I’ve done all of these things, especially fear that someone very important will be calling at this very moment and I will miss whatever chance of a lifetime. Then when you get it back later that day you realize that the only person who has called you is you, and that all you missed were the emails that you already were notified about on your computer. *sigh* At least I know I’m not the only one!

  7. Congrats on Freshly Pressed! This does indeed point at how dependent we’ve become on technology. I will be the first to admit that I’ve definitely had this happen…even though it was early in the morning, I was sure it’d slipped between the bed and the wall, yet it wasn’t on the floor or anywhere to be found. That was a panicky, half-coherent morning. 🙂

  8. I lost my phone once for a very, very long day. I finally found it in the pocket of my husband’s bathrobe in the bottom of the washing machine. Thankfully I hadn’t had time to actually run the wash for I was busy looking for my phone all day…..

  9. If I lost my phone I would forget how to breathe. Sometimes it dies while I am at work and I think the same thing! What if my boyfriend needs to call, what if my sister is going into labor (she’s not even pregnant) and what if I get a flat tire?!

  10. I once borrowed a neighbours mobile and walked all the way back to the city whilst constantly ringing my phone. I kept ringing coz I knew – it’s gotta be not on silent mode. And I was right, it was not on silent!
    I found it between the thracks of the tram line playing its little happy ring tone tune as if nothing had happened. Intensly happy that I found it back, I forgot to listen to and/or look at or pay attention to my environment and:
    got almost hit by the next tram, which started to break with screeching noise right in fron of my nose.
    How lucky I was I had foud my phone and survived the find.

  11. Great blog. I enjoyed it. lost my phone once too. Found it where I had gone shopping and had stepped into the restroom.. It was on the back of the lavatory where evidently I had set it after finishing reading my e-mails. Never been so glad there are so many germophobes in my life. Please don’t judge me too harshly. You know you’ve looked at your phone in places you shouldn’t have.:)

  12. Very cute post! I used to panic when I lost my phone, but now I just think “whew….a few moments of peace!” My crumb snatchers, however, panic when I lose my phone. Heaven forbid they can’t get an immediate answer to “what’s for dinner?” texted from their upstairs bedroom! Congrats on getting Freshly Pressed!

  13. The first tip surely won’t work for me because I always use the silent mode. So it is kinda annoying when I forgot where I put my phone 😦 LOL
    Might need to start using the ring on mode. Nice post. Congrats for being Freshly Pressed 🙂

  14. Remember the good ole days when we did not even need a mobile phone? Or internet? Or Facebook? Losing or misplacing a mobile nowadays is like losing your keys. Great post. I think I will get a clapper for my keys.

  15. I lose my phone on a daily basis . . . usually right before the battery dies so that I have no way of calling to find it. Of course I have also dropped it in the toilet, a cup of coffee, and a fresh pile of horse poo. Glad to know that no one died and the phone was found. Funny post!

  16. I have gone through that panick of losing my phone, or desperately searching for my sons phone when they lose it. How was life before we were only connected through phones. And you know we don’t memorize phone numbers anymore. One day my husband and I were shopping at Wal-Mart and found a phone laying on one of the shelves. So we searched for the number called the most and let the other person know that we found the phone. The gentleman on the other end told us it was his girlfriends phone and she was pregnant due to deliver any time. So we left it at customer service and hoped for the best.

  17. I love that picture of the old phone. I wish I could have something like that at my house. Looks so renaissance. I always have my cellphone with me. Just in case of emergency, you know? Too bad, no one ever calls me so it never rings. I even have to check twice to make sure it’s not off or on silent. Hahaha! Technology…sometimes I love it, sometimes I don’t.

  18. This is great and way too true. I forgot my phone at home a while back and felt all kinds of panic even though I would be at work all day. Everyone in the world knows that I’d be at work and how to get ahold of me there, but still…..what if they left a message on MY phone and I didn’t respond? Would they think I was ignoring them or mad at them for some bizarre reason?

    I needed my phone because these things COULD happen. Of course, people rarely call me on MY phone while I’m at work because they suspect that I’m working and don’t have time to chat.

    Loved your post! Congratulations on being freshly pressed.

  19. Not that that did actually happen, nor has that ever happened to me.

    But if it had, I would say something similar to:

    I feel your pain buddy, I feel your pain.

    Then I would go back to pretending that I don’t lose my phone- not that I’d be pretending. I’ve never lost my phone- ever.


  20. Congrats on being Freshly Pressed! I’ve unknowingly left my phone behind for weekends away and, once passed through Panic-mode (which was surprisingly striking and lengthy), really enjoyed the freedom of not being immediately reachable/connected. Luckily for both of us, there is the relief of knowing where to pick it up after ‘The Break’. Great story!

  21. I always loose my phone in the house, and therefor miss all my phone calls. Then I go on facebook and get bombarded with angry messages from my friends for never picking up my phone. They are now considering buying me one of those giant cell phones from the 80s carried around in a brief case for christmas.

    1. Not a bad idea!!!!! I didn’t lose my phone until i received the latest and greatest phone the size of a postage stamp. Honestly, unless it actually is wrapped around my wrist like a watch, what’s the point? It looked like the one that Zoolander had at the coal mine…

  22. Congrats on being FPed — again! Fun post.

    I mostly loathe cellphones and the sweetie is forever pressing it into my hand to make sure I have it with me so he can call me and….know I’m still alive? His excuse is if there’s an emergency he needs to reach me, and I have to remind him than on 9/11 cellphones did not work and weren’t worth a damn.

    I actually treasure my privacy and independence, and don’t want to be reachable anywhere, any time. What would Greta Garbo do? Hm…..

  23. Loved your post! I have lived similar scenarios on a few occasions, going to work without my (oops! forgotten) pager…. I felt naked when I noticed it wasn’t on my belt, but what a treat ! nobody can page me ! 🙂

  24. Great post, i’m the one who turns my phone off for days at a time. the world could fall apart and I wouldn’t know it. Hope you’re enjoying Edinburgh. I’ve been fortunate enought to visit Scotland a couple of times and fell in love. Cheers!

  25. I forget my phone many times anywhere and it happens most when it is on ‘vibrating’ and then the frustration begins. anyways, cool post! had so much fun reading it 🙂

  26. Well i haven’t lost my cellphone YET. but my family and i have seemed to lost our house phone. we have long since given up on finding it, and just returned to our normal lives. well sort of, destroying the couches looking for it has become kind of a weekly routine. Even though we know for a fact its not there, we just kind of start wishing it was.

    Visit my site please. its lonely

  27. I cannot lose what I do not own. You have pointed out how a communication device seems to exit and expand its influence in our lives. I suspect, as you have suggested, that many people do not realize how much they allow this technology to direct their time and relationships until they misplace it.

    By the way, we enjoyed traveling to Glasgow and Edinburgh a few years back. Good locations for theatre and concerts. I do not recall Edinburgh being too wheelchair friendly though.


  28. I work for a company that does a rigorous investigation into all its employees and we have dual layer security to even get in the building.

    A co-worker accidentally left his iPhone 4 in the mens bathroom and when he went to retrieve it, it was GONE! Stolen by one of our other co-workers.

  29. When a lost phone occurs panic sets in pretty quickly. Not due to separation anxiety and a disconnect from being able to respond immediately to people ALL THE TIME, but because the IPhone is still under a year old and you bought it yourself. That’s why it’s gut wrenching to lose a phone.. because you can no longer afford it when you once could, and did, and purchased it. Lol

    You could say this almost – could have – must have happened before. But it was found.

  30. HEY! Congrats on FP! Well deserving 🙂 Just yesterday I lost my iPhone. I called it and my cleavage rang. I forgot I stuffed it in there…

  31. Yes, that’s exactly what I do if I lost my phone! Great article, I laughed so hard, including my partner that didn’t got run over by a bus, because I lost my phone.

  32. Hahaha I felt like you were painting me into one of those adventure books with multiple page turning options, “After defeating the troll under the bridge, you walk down the dark tunnel to find your phone, you call your phone hoping it’ll ring you into the right direction (turn to page 14) you give up and curse (turn to page 38).”

  33. Great post! I always freak out whenever I misplace my phone, and it always seems to be on silent mode when that happens. And my mother also always seems to call me whenever my phone is either missing or silent. It’s quite frustrating. I always think, “WHY?!” Haha! Congrats on being Freshly Pressed! 😀

  34. I was actually the finder of lost cell phones for two years. Security & Lost and found at a mid-size… well to me anyway, airport. Remember the guy who I told to try and call his cell but he was sure it was still off from while on the plane, when finally did he’d attached it to the wrong side of his belt! The other was the gentleman too embarased to pick up his phone himself after having it answered by a female because the ring tone was the Tarzan yell.

    This is compared to me who often losses her cell because so seldom uses it, I use it more for the calender and the alarms I set on it so rather then missing calls I miss appointments 🙂

  35. Eeeek! No phone…shudder…. If I leave my phone at home I am always convinced that will be the day the school calls me to tell me one of the kids is seriously damaged and I need to be there. I do NOT want to find this out on messagebank! Of course, when I get it back there are never any urgent calls and the world hasn’t ended without me noticing.

    I too am guilty of wandering around the house pathetically lifing cushions and books while calling my mobile. I should know by now it is always in the car down the side of the passenger seat!
    Great post, congrats on FP 🙂

  36. It’s amazing to me how unsettled I feel when I leave my phone at home. I survived with no problem when I was younger and didn’t have a cell phone and now, I feel really panicky when I don’t have it with me, like that will be the one time that I need it. Glad you found your phone! Happy Sunday!

  37. LOve it. That first phone reminded me of my first mobile phone. HUGE! And no I can’t imagine life without my mobile. I was only saying the other day I don’t know how we managed. We used the landline to talk to people, made appointments and actually turned up!

  38. lol! i dont lose my phone often but it does die a lot and ive left my charger somewhere where i ultimately cannot charge it. and then i think about all the people who obviously are calling/texting me and im missing them!

    but, life w/o cell phones was simpler, and sometimes i think better!

    stopping by from ftlob! have a great day!

  39. Oh My God! This happens in my home like nearly every week or so! Sometimes, my mother would forget her phone at work or at her friend’s house or somewhere or the other; at other times, it would be my dad. It is just so usual now 😀
    Congratulations on being Freshly Pressed! Wonderful Post!

  40. The humor in your writing is infectious! Indeed, society’s dependence on technology has become overwhelming. Our cell phones have become a part of our identities, through daily use and unbridled interaction. We lose it, we lose a chunk of ourselves.

  41. I gave up my smart phone and found there is life after. LOL I don’t use my phone for anything now unless I’m texting or calling. It’s nice. I like being available, I hated being dependent. And I hated the price.

  42. Oh cell phones, aren’t they tricky. I’ve been lucky enough to not have this happen to me yet (knock on wood), but I have friends you lost theirs down the toilet, in a taxi, and somewhere during a concert. Sadly those were not so easy to retrieve, as if they would have left it at work. Still interesting story.

  43. Something similar happened to me just a while ago. I lost my phone while it was low on battery, and I freaked out about 20 minutes after I realized I couldn’t find it. For an even more dramatic effect, I had traveled to about 6 places in Manhattan that day for job interviews, to my school and a bar after class in Long Island, and then a diner somewhere in Queens.

    I only realized I lost my phone once I got back home that night around midnight.

    ((O_O)) <— my reaction.

    The next morning I woke up defeated and utterly depressed without my form of communication, to find my phone on my dining table with a post-it note from my boyfriend, saying "It was on the passenger seat in the car, Love you"

    [^__^] <— My reaction.

    My life saver. lol

  44. I forgot my phone at home yesterday and at the end of the day I told my friend, “You know, it’s been kinda nice without my phone.” And she was shocked! Because I’m abnormally attached to my phone. As in, I won’t even set it down when I go somewhere. What if it catches a cootie? I can’t have cooties on my hands or near my face!

    I’m glad you survived. I’m also glad I survived. Ha!

  45. Congrats on being Freshly Pressed! Looks like it’s the second time around for you. I loved this post. I have an iPhone. I’ve had it for 11 months. It’s great and sometimes I wonder how I managed without it. I mean, what in the world did I do when I wasn’t able to check my friends’ Facebook statuses several times throughout the day? Did I actually write my grocery list using a real piece of paper and a pen? Did I really enjoy weekends without checking my work email on Saturday and Sunday?

    Don’t get me wrong; it has been convenient from time to time. I’ve been out with my family and needed to look up a number, address, hours, or restaurant menu. I’ve used the GPS on my phone when my Garmin didn’t know where I was going. I’ve taken pictures of my kids doing something incredibly cute when I didn’t have my camera nearby.

    But, I can manage without it. I was on vacation this past week and barely used my phone. There were two days when I didn’t even touch it. It was great. I actually felt “free.” There have been many times over the past year when I’ve wished I did not have an iPhone, or even a cell phone in general. I secretly long to live in the 50s, 60s, or even 70s, when we couldn’t be tracked down by phones and pagers, and when things weren’t so freaking urgent. I’ve made the comment to my husband that I’d like to get rid of my phone, but then I worry. What if I’m out with the kids and need to call 911? What if I have to make an urgent call and have to find a pay phone? (Gasp!!!)

    I suppose I’ll be hanging on to my phone, but I think I need to spend more days without it like I did this past week. I’ll keep it with me since I take my kids to and from the sitter’s house each day, but now I think I’ll keep it in the part of my purse that zips close. Out of sight, out of mind? We’ll see how it goes.

    Great blog! Congrats again on FP!

  46. I think the worst thing about losing my phone (something I do pretty frequently) is having to find something to use as an alarm. Every time, I curse myself for throwing out that clock radio years ago

  47. There are time you have the phone in the pocket, stop feeling it after a while n thinks its lost. U reach all them steps you described in a matter of seconds…and then curse yourself!! 🙂

  48. Brilliant post. This is the problem with our society, as soon as any technological equipment runs away out of peripheral view we panic like we’ve lost our parent in Tesco supermarket. After being on holiday in Greece, alone and unable to contact my mother because some places in the world still struggle with signal, she panicked and thought I’d died. I hadn’t. I was revelling in the fact that for 7 uninterupted days I didn’t have to constantly check my phone to see if anyone was thinking of me enough to say “hey.” Now I can’t wait to accidently lose my phone or “ooops, no battery”. One holiday changed my technoligcal life, I now do not sit for hours on facebook or check my phone. Bliss.

  49. Haha. This made me laugh. Fortunately for me whenever I’ve lost my phone it’s usually fallen onto the floor from my pocket due to the odd positions I sit in. Luckily for me only two people ever call my phone and they live in the same house!

  50. In the early 2000s/ late 90s, before social network sites, when I lost my phone, it was the end of the world. The cute guy I’d just met had that number and was supposed to call, and it wasn’t like I could just call up the provider and ask them to transfer the number to another phone so I could recieve his call…

    I ran around and retraced my footsteps like a mad-woman. I asked every stranger on the street “have you seen a 3210? I lost it!”

    Yeah losing things are more relaxing nowadays

  51. I would be quite happy to lose my phone. As it is, it is never near me when it rings simply because I dont carry it around to where ever I am doing things. I can listen to it ring, somewhere in the distance, and happily ignore it while I carry on doing what I am doing.
    I enjoyed reading your blog post.

  52. Now I recall losing my phone awhile ago .. but somehow I didn’t panic! I thought I would just faint when the phone disappeared but really I lived through a week without a phone! Great post there though, on every other occasion I panic, freak out, call endlessly and yea…everything up there 🙂 keep writing!

  53. Unfortunately I have an app on my phone that I text a code to and it shows on the GPS where the phone is. I sometimes wish I could lose my phone for a good two or three hours 🙂 I would hate to have to go to work on my day off to retrieve the annoying gadget!

  54. I am so happy I don’t have a mobile phone.
    I hate the damn things, they enslave people.
    My telephone is a 1937 bakelite model, it lives on a table in the corner of my room and is perfectly happy there.
    I’ve never lost it yet.

  55. Lady, my cell phone is like a life line. The thought that I might be parted from it for whatever reason, makes me break out in hives! In hives, I tell you! Look at that, I’m reaching for my purse as I type. Just to make sure it’s still there! 🙂

  56. It is crazy how much technology has taken over our lives. Some good, others not so much. Many of us, including me, spend hours on Facebook for absolutely nothing, send more than 10,000 texts a month, and hardly go outside. This post proves how addicted we get to our electric devices. I loved this post, very funny:)

  57. Awesome post. This happened to me last week. I e-mailed everyone including friends who never EVER call me to tell them that I didn’t have my phone but could Facebook, Twitter or Skype me. A lot of these long lost friends replied to my e-mail to ask how I could ever live without my phone. And to think, there are people in less fortunate places… who never had a cell phone.

    Thanks for sharing!

  58. Love this! Really made me laugh :o) I’ve done that before, but only realised that I hadn’t infact lost my phone, when I said to my other half ‘I’ve lost my phone’ whilst on the phone to him! Oops!

    Glad to have found your blog and I look forward to reading more of your posts!

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