Commitments: Mobiles & Men

Commitments.  As a species, we very much wax  philosophy on the ideal.  A good number of us even practice it.  Not all, but most.  We make commitments on a daily basis.  And romantic commitments seem to be the hardest of all.  Much more so then the annoying decision to commit to, say, a cellular phone company, and finding the right plan.

I was in the process of posting a more serious view on relationships, until I had to deal with issues with my cell.  That got me thinking.

cell plans=romantic relationships?  Sure, why not.  Ok, fundementals:  we look to connect to someone as a mate.  We seek what we hope is the best company to deliver the plan we want.  We look for the traits in a person that we like.  We pick a cell unit on much the same criteria.  So, then, why is it designed the way it is?  That we have so many choices in cell plans, as well as mates, but we just have a hard time with the commitment?

My cell is virtually my world.  And Mr. Str8 is under the assumption that he is.  Frankly, I couldn’t have our relationship without it.  It makes you think when things start to not work right.  And after all I have invested in both my cell and Str8, I wondered if I was really the romantic leading diva, I always thought I was. 

Problem is, in a cell plan, if your unit goes haywire, there are certain steps you need to follow.  If we only get a one year manufacturer’s warranty, then why are we locked into a three year contract?  Are we prepared in a relationship, to keep a commitment with a mate that starts not working right?

This makes me think.  Are we even getting it right, in our pursuit of a committed relationship?  Is the ancient cavepeople way of bashing a victim mate, not still being used, and is it not the same in the competitive world of mobile phone companies?

Ok, so let us compare finding  a relationship with finding a cell company. 

Cell: 1) They have storefront locations, with products on display.  2) You get the chance to play with them.  3) You have a warranty for the first year, and the chance to pay more for a repair plan.  4) You are committed to a contractual time-frame, usually three years.  5)  You can get credits back, download fun and cool things.  6) You even get the chance to upgrade to a new model if you wish.

Mate: 1) They are around us all the time.  They are at bars, churches, libraries, dating services, sex clubs, classifieds.  However, usually the important products are not on full display.  2) You get the chance to play with them on rare occasions, unless ur gay, then u have a room full of units to play with at a bar.  3) You have no warranties in a relationship, and it can sour at any time, and there you are: without regular service.  4) There is no real expiration date for a relationship, however, you will know it, one way or another.  It is an assumption we make, once we get over the ‘honeymoon’ phase, that we are in essence, in a committed relationship.  5) Trust me, there are no credits in a relationship.  You usually cannot be compensated for CDs that go missing, or artwork, or JuJu, the poodle pup that your now ex takes in their custody.  6) There is no upgrading with a relationship.  Sure, you could search for a new model to replace the old one that got too over/underweight, or less clean, or unemployed, but really, it means that you are now past the expiration date on the current mate, and unlike the cell upgrade, the partner upgrade means starting over from scratch.

I have been with my mobile company for over 13 years.  Str8, 2.  After 5 cell models, (only one was a lemon.  This current one, over used, but still wanted), and over 5 relationships (3 were lemons, the current, over the top, but still wanted), I think I am still the commitment type.  I am resentful that with my cell, I have to pay for servicing, even though I faithfully spend money with them, year after year.  That after the warranty, your screwed.  And in a relationship, well, you are screwed in a good way, until you are screwed in a bad way.  We seem in today’s world to not really want a commitment.  New companies, or ones that ‘listen’ to their customers, offer non-contract plans.  So, you can stay as long as you like, even try on another plan from someone else.  In life, we call these people sluts.  So…..

And once you are stuck paying for repairs, and unwanted charges  and fees with a cell, it reminds me of something similar in a relationship: alimony (aka: palamony, support).  No?  To get out of a commitment, you better have the cash.

I want to keep my unit.  Or, upgrade.  I, personally, perfer to be someone who honours commitment.  As long as I get satisfied with my long-term carrier, then I will be there supporting them.  Just like with Mr. Str8.  As long as we satisfy each other, we are good. 

I want to have a relationship.  That is the goal.  Whether it is with the same partner or not.  Similarly, I believe in cell plans, even if under the end-date, my unit craps out, and I get stuck paying more.  I feel comfortable, mostly secure, and proud to be apart of the company I am with.  Well, let us just wait to see how repairing my Blackberry goes…  In the meantime, I think I will keep Str8 around awhile longer as well.  I feel the same things with him (well..no, really I do…), as well as love.  I do not back down from commitments, nor do I take them lightly. 

So, cells are pretty much like partners.  We may seek out contracts, nor not.  We may not be happy with units once something newer, cooler comes along.  And with people, is it not, really, the same thing?  Do we choose based on whether we are in a commitment or not, or do we choose to make that choice as we go?  Are we all secretly commitment whores, or are we like Superman, and commitment is our Kryptonite?  Are relationships not like cells, in that we fall in love with something, and we instinctively want to hold on to it as long as we can?

I say we chuck out the old ways for finding love.  If we can have cell units on display, why not people?  They should come with 1yr warranties, plans, you know, the whole nine yards, just like cells.  Really go shopping for a mate.  Best part of all: the upgrade.  You could go from zero to hero, for a small fee. 

I may have issues with my cell.  I may have issues with Str8.  But at the end of the day, it is not about expiration dates, or contracts, or the bad times.  I wanted my Blackberry for a reason.  Just like I wanted Mr. Str8 for a reason.  And while I may be one of a small number of ‘mos actually wanting a committed relationship, I think I am OK with that.

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