There are few things as disconcerting in life as the moment your iPhone escapes the death grip that is your hand. I swear, my heart stops every time it happens and I have to ask myself if I really want to pick it up and look at it. My life story contains a lot of iPhone drops, moments where I question if I even want to see it, and the bend-and-snap that is picking up my phone to see what damage I have done. Typically, I can breathe easy as my phone has escaped any noticeable damage or suffered just a small nick on the edge. Then there is the time (in my case, a foot away from an entire beach full of soft sand) where you drop Apple’s gift to the world and you just know that when you pick it up, your life will never be the same.
First of all, there’s the glass. There’s glass everywhere. It’s on the floor; it’s in your fingers; it’s in your face; it’s in your butt/thigh area; it’s in your purse so it’s there for later, too. It’s like fucking glitter. There’s no escape from the small shards of glass that are about to turn your life into a T-Mobile JUMP commercial. I’d be happy to tell whomever the engineer at Apple is that thought making a phone with a surface made almost entirely glass what he can do with these shards of glass.
Secondly, I believe I could really live my life fairly well without your judgement, everyone. Yes, I broke my phone. Yes, it is shattered nearly beyond recognition. No, I can’t really use it all that great right now. There’s a 90% chance someone is going to come up to you and say, verbatim, “You know your phone’s shattered, right?” Why yes, ever-so-observant stranger, I do. Now if you could silently and swiftly walk away before I turn my phone into a weapon, that’d be great. I’m too fragile for prison, but this cracked screen could slice you to pieces.
You also become painfully aware of the number of times you have to tell the story of how you shattered your phone because you can no longer count them on your fingers (or your toes). I dropped it on a sidewalk. “Oh, where at?” Florida. “Which part of Florida?” Clearwater. “Oh, I love their beaches!” Yeah, me too, when I’m not standing a foot away from them and dropping my phone.
The typos that come with a shattered phone are the worst, and honestly make me feel as if I’ve shaved a point or two off of my IQ. Autocorrect fucks with you enough when your screen is non-shattered, but imagine typing when you can’t see well enough to fix it. “You” becomes “your.” “Our” becomes “out.” “Is” and “I’d” are suddenly interchangeable. Don’t even get me started on “if” and “of.” “Car becomes cat.” It’s snowing where I live and I’m pretty sure it’s a conversation mistake to say that you’re waiting for your cat to defrost.
Also, forget Instagram. I can’t tell which filter I like the best because I can hardly see my face.
You have to learn how to navigate around the varicose veined disaster that is your iPhone screen, because one false move and your reopening wounds you’ve worked long and hard to recover from. You’ve also began tilting your phone up, down, and side-to-side just to see what people have sent you and read Post Grad Problems on your lunch break. You almost hate when people interact with you via social media and are starting to earn an honest respect for the good old days when people talked to each other face-to-face and could sit through an entire dinner without whipping out their phones.
The lowest of the lows, however, is the fact that you can barely afford to pay the bill or the $9/month insurance that would’ve saved you from this disaster, much less pay for a new, unscathed phone. I would love to get a new phone, don’t get me wrong. I would love to get a new phone each September when Apple decides to be a game-changer, but I simply can’t afford this. I can barely afford a new phone when I’m eligible for an upgrade every seven years. My mom is Amazon Prime’ing me food, for shit’s sake. So until my carrier decides to starting rewarding my loyalties with free phones, I’ll just daydream of the day I can finally retire this safety hazard.