J: Are you at a zoo, surrounded by chimpanzees?

me: No, I’m at Lloyd Center [mall in NE Portland], and there are a bunch of screaming kids everywhere. It’s pretty much the same thing.

J: (laughs) That’s hilarious. You should put it in your blog.

You have to love cell phones.

One time I was hiking in the Columbia river gorge, along a dirt road that was covered with leaves. I called my brother to say hello. A couple of minutes into the conversation, my brother asked me, “What are you doing? Are you crunching potato chips right into the phone?”

“No, why?”

“Because it sounds like you’re doing that.”

“No, I’m hiking. Those are leaves.”

“Oh man, that was so loud I couldn’t even hear what you were saying.”

The moral of the story is that I’m not going to buy another Motorola phone. Mine isn’t even a cheap one, but the sound quality is terrible. I don’t recommend them; in fact, I recommend against them. They also make this buzzing sound that never goes away. Almost every single conversation I have goes like this, at some point:

them: “Hey, do you hear that noise?”

me: “Yeah, it’s my phone.”

them: “It’s really annoying. And loud.”

me: “Yeah, I know; everybody tells me that. I hear it too.”

them: “It’s kind of a buzzing sound.”

me: “Yeah, I know. It’s my phone.”

them: “Man, that’s loud. You should go get a new one.”

me: “I know. This one sucks. It was expensive, but it still sucks.”

them: “Wow, that’s really lou–”

me: “Yeah, I know. Can we talk about something else now?”