Tuesday, June 14, 2011

My Dad vs. Texting

My dad has been fighting the "I need a cell phone" mindset for the past 10 years. (10 years? Is that when cell phones became necessary accessories?)

He is an attorney and a husband and a dad and a grandpa and a mormon. He doesn't think he should have to be available to all of the people who want to talk to him anytime they want to. He relishes long drives to Salt Lake during which is truly is unavailable. He comes and goes when he can. And when he's in the same room as a ringing phone if he acknowledges it at all, it's only to give a casual wave and say "don't worry about that, it'll go away soon."

It isn't that he's anti-social, he is the best listener I know, and I really think he likes talking to people. It's just that he doesn't think he needs to have a leash.

3 years ago he was called to serve in a BYU (college) Singles (18-30 year olds) ward (congregation). Every time he told someone in his ward that he didn't own a cell phone they tried to figure out how on earth they'd ever be in touch with him. Would they have to etch a message on a stone tablet and drop it in the ocean hoping it would arrive on the other side of Provo by the end of the week?

Today he was ordained and set apart as the Bishop of a different BYU Singles ward. It means he works very closely with 150+ young college students. Texting is suddenly necessary. He promised the Stake President he would get a cell phone with texting and that he'd learn how to text.

I think of all the ways being a Bishop will impact him this is the biggest.

He's already good at all the other Bishop-y stuff, and while he'll be extraordinarily busy with meetings and interviews and counseling, that will be easy-peasy compared to learning to text.

My Dad: 50-something years
Texting: 1. 1 really really big one.

You fought a good fight dad. You really did.


  1. I'm not going to lie, I wish I were that person who didn't have a cell phone and didn't text. Remember when you could go on vacation or camping and really be unavailable? Sometimes I miss that. With that said, I hope your dad learning to text is as entertaining as my mom learning to text.

  2. Good Luck to him. I'm 26 and haven't got a clue how to text. I think I am happy about it too. For me, it is kind of a stubborn thing. I don't feel like I should have to text or talk on the phone a hundred times a day. Maybe one day, I'll give in and buy a real cell phone, and maybe just maybe, I will text.

  3. LOL. I love it! We're finally having to break down and get texting on our phones since my husband is YM's President. While we're at it, as nursery leader, I have now found it unthinkable to not have a Costco membership. Anyway, I'm sure your dad will do great. My dad can totally out text me. :)

  4. This is awesome. It's one of those posts where you wish there was a "like" button, because it's just great!

  5. LOL!!!!!!! Your poor Dad!! I sure hope Spencer never has to go through that, I am afraid he is more stubborn than that! ;)

  6. So that is why my dad had to go to your house. Lol. That is awesome though. It's a bit weird to think of your dad texting...

  7. That's funny. My dad is "techy" so he's has a cell phone from when they FIRST came out and were the size of giant bricks! Anyway, when he texts he texts in complete and proper sentences (so it takes awhile)

  8. We don't text. And our cell phone is reserved for immediate family. John won't give the number to his employers.

  9. My father-in-law is a BYU bishop. He has done text-tithing-settlements, among other things...it's like totally essential because sometimes the kids are suddenly on the other side of the country with no way to contact their bishop other than long-distance phone call or texting and they haven't done their tithing settlement yet and it's New Year's Eve. ;)

    Yeah, my f-i-l texts his ward members all. the. time.

    Your dad will get used to it soon enough. :)

  10. I'd never texted until I was called as a RS president and then the bishop told me that was the only way to get a hold of him night and day. I don't know how people would serve in those callings without a cell--texting is just icing on the cake.


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