Renner: Stupid Smartphones -- Cameras, cards and cellphones, oh my!

One week, when I was submitting a post to my blog, I wanted to include a picture. Even though my phone is not a smart one, it can take pictures. Not that I am very good at taking pictures with a phone. I shiver and shake so much that there are fo...

One week, when I was submitting a post to my blog, I wanted to include a picture. Even though my phone is not a smart one, it can take pictures.

Not that I am very good at taking pictures with a phone. I shiver and shake so much that there are focusing squares dancing all over the phone screen. The more I try to hold steady, the more I shake. If my phone was "smart," it would tell me to hold still already.

Eventually I was able to snap a few pictures in hopes that one wouldn't be too blurry. When it came time to upload the picture from my phone to my computer, I was so proud of myself that I remembered I have to remove the memory card and put it into the adaptor ScanDisk in order to transfer the picture from my phone to my computer. I even remembered where the adapter disk was at. Unfortunately for me, the memory card was still in the adaptor.

Now I know there is a way to get the picture off the phone and onto the memory card. I was trying to remember the process but nothing specific was coming to mind. I did know I needed to take the back off of my phone. Once I had the back of the phone off, I thought I remembered the process. Here is a rendition of the thought process that went through my head.

"Oh yeah. If I remember correctly, this little cardboard card is a place holder. I need to take that out and insert the memory card into that spot." Which I did.


For some odd reason, the phone turned off. When I turned it back on, there was this huge exclamation point and a message that said, "Please insert SIM card." In the bottom, right-hand corner it said, "SOS." So I pushed that button and I got a message asking me if I wanted to make an emergency call. Not knowing how to get the picture off the phone isn't exactly an emergency.

My next thought was that I must have inserted the memory card incorrectly. So I turned the memory card 90 degrees and re-inserted it. The phone still wanted me to please insert the SIM card.

My thought: "Stupid phone. I need the memory card inserted so I can get my picture uploaded to my computer." Thinking I needed to turn the memory card another 90 degrees and try to insert it again, I got a tweezers and attempted to remove the card. It was stuck. I had no choice but to make a trip to see my friends at the AT&T store.

I put the adapter disk and the SIM card in a little baggy and drove up to the AT&T outlet to ask for help. Of course, all the salespeople were busy and people were waiting in line. While I was waiting, I studied my three choices of sales people. I didn't see the really nice and understanding older lady helped me the last time. RATS!

All three salespersons were really young gals. Since they were all equal in age, I considered their positions behind the counter. I started to pray that when it was my turn to be waited on, the gal farthest to the left next to the wall would be free. I did not want to end up in the middle, where twice as many people would be able to hear my dilemma. The cellphone gods were with me that day. I got the gal near the wall. I hugged the wall as much as possible and quietly tried to explain my problem. It probably would be easiest to explain if I wrote out the conversation that took place.

Sales Gal: How can I help you?

Me: I don't know if you can help me. But first I have a question. What is this little cardboard card?

I proceeded to show her the card in the baggy. She was silent for a few moments too long, looked at me and blinked.


SG: That is your SIM card. What is it doing out of your phone? The SIM card is basically your phone.

I held up my cellphone.

Me: Isn't this my cellphone?

SG: Well yes, but the SIM card is what makes your cellphone work. It has all your phone information on it that allows your phone to actually work.

Me: OK then, I have a memory card stuck in the spot where the SIM card belongs.

SG: I should be able to get that out for you.

And bless her heart. Not only did she remove the memory card from the SIM location, she reassured me.

SG: This actually happens more than you think.


Well, I think she was being very nice and very kind because I think I am the only person on the planet that doesn't know that the SIM card actually is the key component that makes the cellphone work. She is getting my vote for employee of the month!

Then she showed me where the memory card is supposed to be inserted and re-inserted the "all important" SIM card. Once all cards were properly inserted in their correct spots, I asked if she could move the pictures on my phone to the memory card.

SG: Absolutely. No problem.

She handed me my cellphone.

SG: Just choose the pictures you want to transfer to the memory card.

I was silent for a moment too long, blinked at her, handed the phone back to her.

Me: Ah, can you do that for me? I have no idea how to even get to my pictures.

This sales girl had the patience of a saint. She took the phone from me and pushed buttons all the while, trying to explain the process to me. I was totally lost. I do remember her showing me the "MOVE" choice, pushing that button and telling me the photos were now on the memory card. I am thinking it will take a small miracle for me to ever locate that "MOVE" choice again.


I put the memory card back in my phone after I successfully transferred the picture to my computer and uploaded it to my blog. However, I did wonder for three days what that weird icon was at the top of my phone meant.

I believe that when I left the AT&T store, the super nice sales girl did enter my name into a National Registry Database of people who should never own a smartphone. However, I am not totally giving up on the iPhone possibility yet.

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