April 28, 2011

Outed By My Ringtone


Cell Phones image

Last week I was in a meeting and my phone started ringing. Yes, I know I’m supposed to have it on vibrate or turn it off when going into a meeting. But, in my defense, the volume is not loud. And had it gone off during the meeting there would have been plenty of talking no one would have heard it.

Although, it went off as I was getting ready to leave. And the room was quiet. Like really quiet. And there I was. Standing at the conference table with a corporate executive next to me.

What to do? Do I just pretend that my purse is a musical purse? Should I pretend that nothing weird is happening?

It was at that moment, when the gentleman standing next to me said “I’d never have pegged you for that.” Was that a compliment? Was it a bit of snark? Ugh! Now I was embarrassed. So not only does my phone ring but now I need to somehow explain my ringtone.

My first cellular phone was in 1994. It was huge, but not quite as cool and mobile as The Brick. It had a default ringtone and the choice was either on or off. On you heard it and could answer. Off and it was worthless unless you had some type of cellular ESP. Then there was the Nokia with the polyphonic ringtone. Again the choice was either off and miss the call or on and be outed with a lame ringtone. At least there was voice messaging.

I had that phone for a very long time. Well, long in cell phone years. When it stopped taking a charge I upgraded to a super fancy fuchsia Razr. At least that one had a pretty zippy vibrate so I could still answer it since it was almost always in my purse. But I could also buy ringtones so that I could identify certain people immediately. I was on fire!

Then came the game-changer that is The iPhone! My own music. My own ringtones. Real songs. Real songs where I could specifically pick which portion I wanted. Which didn’t matter most of the times because my phone was on vibrate. Until last week. When my brother called.

As my purse began to belt out The Dixie Chicks heads turned. “Country music?”, someone said with a hint of disdain. I had been outed. Yes, country music! I’m a closet country music listener and I’m OK with that! I grew up listening to country music. Old school country!

Anyway, back to my singing purse. So I’m there with The Dixie Chicks singing Not Ready to Make Nice. Besides being embarrassed that my phone is ringing I now have questions to answer. And since I answered them once I figured I’d just answer them for everyone.

The Dixie Chicks? Yes, The Dixie Chicks! These are some strong ladies! They took a lot of heat and they didn’t back down nor were they bullied into making nice. I can embrace that kind of Awesome!!

Why Not Ready To Make Nice, the Dixie Chicks have many great songs? I got my iPhone almost 3 years ago and shortly after I got it my grandmother was diagnosed with cervical cancer and had to undergo surgery. There were post-operative complications and my grandmother was hospitalized for almost 60 days. And during that time she was none too happy and she said some not so nice things to a number of people. When I would try to talk to her about it she told me that she’s almost 90 and shoe doesn’t have to make nice. So I made her ring tone Not Ready To Make Nice. And hearing it always gave me a little bit more power to be true and authentic without hesitating because there might be consequences.

Why do you have a ring tone? I used to keep my phone on vibrate. Most of my clothes don’t have pockets so I keep my phone in my purse. Those two don’t go together very well. So I gave in and decided I needed cool ringtones for each person as well as a general ring tone. I know, it’s so 1990s but what’s a girl to do?

In the grand scheme of things, it’s not a big deal. But what I’ve determined is that your ringtone says a lot more about you than you may think. I just hope mine says that I may not be perfect to you, but I’m perfect to me.

Do you use ringtones? Why or why not? If you have ’em why did you choose them?



Just Heather April 28, 2011 at 10:04 am

I have a specific ringtone for the hubby, the girls’ school (so I know to *always* answer) and MFJ. We each have the same ringtone for one another – Lime in the Coconut.

Everyone in my life knows who is calling when that ring goes off. And, I don’t bother to say hello – instead, we always answer “Tell me a story!” And, think fondly of you.

Sara May 3, 2011 at 11:59 pm

Heather, I’ll always remember hearing you answer the phone “Tell me a story!” and feeling like part of the group. Thank you for including me!


rhonda April 28, 2011 at 8:11 pm

you make me smile. : )
My girls have ringtones for when i call them. I’m never sure what it will be. At one point it was Jamie Foxx Blame it on the Alcohol. It seems having an occasional adult beverage is horrible.

My ringtone is by a Christian group I love–Toby Mac. Course, I don’t know how to set it, so Miranda had to find it and then install it for me. hehe.

Cheap Sally May 2, 2011 at 2:15 pm

I really don’t have a ringtone for each person, but I did record a personalized sound bite from my husband and it goes off whenever he calls! I think it’s just a little more personal but I do put my phone on vibrate whenever I’m at work or at a business meeting. Otherwise I’ll hear “Hey Sal! You’re my gal! Pick up the phone for me right now!”

LOL! Makes me smile everytime…

Sara May 3, 2011 at 11:58 pm

Sally, thank you for visiting. I can imagine your ring tone can cause heads to turn when it goes off. I like that you did something personal. I have a separate ring tone for my husband too. They’re important guys!

So nice to see you on the blog,

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