Mom, I didn’t mean to text that. Honest, it wasn’t me!

We don’t have cell phone service here in our neck of the Upper Peninsula of Michigan woods.

Sure, there’s service down in L’Anse since they constructed that fancy tower a couple of years ago.

But if you drive more than three miles out of town, your cell phone will cease to work.  Don’t call if you’re lost.  You’ll have to find your way through the trees by yourself.

By a strange fluke of nature, sometimes you can send text messages at our house.  Only if you have a powerful signal.  Only if the planets are properly aligned.  It’s kind of like sending smoke signals.

Hello. Hello?

We only know this because a certain niece–who shall remain nameless–once visited.  As we showed her waterfalls and Lake Superior waves, her fingers and thumbs texted.  Only 45.6% of her visited us, because the rest of her lived in Text Land.

She discovered, through fluke and happenstance, that if she sat in one particular corner of our house on one particular chair and kept the cell phone 10.3 inches above her head (not six inches.  not seven and a half inches) that she could receive messages from her teenage beloved and three best friends.

(I’ve attempted to recreate this miracle with our traveling TracFone, but do not have the Magic Formula.  You won’t receive a text from me today.  Unless I drive to town after work.)

She and her parents decided to leave our fair woods house at 6 a.m. one fine Saturday in late August, circa 2009.  We had offered her a bed in the basement on which to sleep.

I emerged from our bedroom, sleepy-eyed, at 5:30 a.m. to discover this precious niece sleeping in the texting chair with her telephone exactly 10.3 inches above her head awaiting the next text.  She had fallen asleep with her hand and cell phone above her head.

I kid you not.

(Regret to this day not getting a photograph to show her future children.)


Back to today’s topic.

My daughter just bought an iPhone.  She lives in the urban jungle–New York City.  Don’t ask how or why our offspring from the woods ended up in San Diego and NYC.  They just did.  And now the youngest has traded her dumb phone for a smart phone.

That phone can do anything!  (I’m sure you all know about this.  Excuse the backwoods amazement.)  She can talk into that phone and it types emails to you.  She can get lost and it saves her day.

Last evening when I was oh-so-tired from an inability to sleep the night before, she emailed a funny link.

First she patiently explained what “auto correct” means when you’re texting on an iPhone.  She said, “When you’re text messaging, iPhone corrects misspelled words for you. However, sometimes they correct real words and replace them with other words they think you’re trying to type.”

Really?  Wow, what a smart phone!

Inner workings

Some of you know where this is headed, don’t you?  You’ve heard it on the news, haven’t you? (Those of you with television service, that is.)

Please click on this link if you’re ready to laugh long and hard this morning.

It is a site called Damn You Auto Correct.  Don’t click if you’re easily offended by vulgar or inappropriate words, because the Auto Correct function of smart phones remains morally and ethically clueless.

If you’re not easily offended, prepare to laugh until you cry.

I can just see the poor texter, who thought he was typing something like, “Mom, I’m coming out of the clinic now”.  Instead Auto-Correct replaces the word “clinic” with “closet”.  And then Mom reassures him that it’s all right and she’s always suspected…

See you later, readers.  I’m going to Hawaii now.

No, no, no!  I meant to type “work”.   Bless you, Auto Correct, for that lovely suggestion!  Wonder how much tickets might cost…

P.S.  Have any of you texted your mother or sweetheart an inappropriate message without your knowledge?

About Kathy

I live in the middle of the woods in Michigan's Upper Peninsula. Next to Lake Superior's cold shores. I love to blog.
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65 Responses to Mom, I didn’t mean to text that. Honest, it wasn’t me!

  1. Elisa's Spot says:

    Kathy? I can barely dial a number, call, talk, and then manage to hang up on a cell phone. I just make a dubious face at attempting to text. Who wants to cram up one’s fingers, when a perfectly loverly computer and keyboard allows the fingers to fly along at a comfy 70-90 wpm?

  2. Reggie says:

    That was hysterical, Kathy.

    I count myself lucky that I don’t have a smartphone! 😀

  3. laugh, Laugh, LAUGHTER!

  4. Laughing is good, especially here in the Northwoods. xoxoxo S

  5. jeff v says:

    It’s really not a phone , it’s a computer you can make phone calls on . I have one and the day I retire it’s going into orbit. I consider it an electronic teather and a royal pain. My wife has an interesting theory. She thinks that in a few generations our thumbs will be longer than our fingers after so much texting and such. By the way, try your phone at the top of the hill just east of the Huron Bay trading post. we accidently discovered a signal there. Whenever we head to Skanee I tell those left behind dont try calling because we don’t have cell service there. and that’s the way we prefer it. Have a good weekend!

    • Kathy says:

      Jeff, I almost stopped the car at that spot this morning and Tried the phone to see if it worked. But instead sped by toward Pat’s IGA in town. I only love my TracFone in case the car dies on long trips. But how I understand your point of view!

  6. forestfae says:

    The reception is also dicey out here in my neck of the woods. We live in the middle of a ancient woodland forest, and apart from regularly getting snowed in, in the winters, the reception is poor. Like you guys I have figured out certain spots in and around the house for maximum reception, one is outside on the deck, next to a particular strawberry planter, also helps if I stand on one leg and hold the mobile in my left hand whilst talking..hehe

  7. I’m laughing so hard I can’t breathe and the tears are running down my face! 🙂

    • Kathy says:

      Oh Barbara it was SO worth it to post this link, then!!! One family member–won’t mention who–said this is all “old news”. Alas. Finally “old news” hath arrived in the backwoods. It’s still as funny as when it first when viral, isn’t it?

  8. Celeste says:

    I have a smartphone and am terrible at texting, and I also hate it. So, I use the microphone feature which converts my voice to text. HOWEVER, it also auto-corrects and often to hilarious and rude degree. I think my hubby would expire if he couldn’t be wired at all times, but the thought of living somewhere with no signal gives me a smile!

    • Kathy says:

      Hello, Ms. Celeste! I am fascinated that these features auto-correct to “hilarious and rude degrees.” Ha! You wouldn’t mind it here in the backwoods. You just have to be flexible when you need your Technological Fix.

  9. Heather says:

    Here in the land of tourism (I am not complaining – that’s how I found this place, and it keeps folks in business!), we have pretty reliable service. In the spring though, when we go out hunting morels, we often wander right off the grid.
    What is that first photo? Did you edit it to be that way? And the second one reminds me of Dali 🙂 I will not choose a favorite out loud **grin**

    • Kathy says:

      When we hunt morels, we’re off the grid completely! I never even know where we are. 🙂 As for that first photo, it’s a glimpse through a wine glass. Not edited in any way. The glass itself looks like it’s had too much to drink; certainly not the photographer! I thought the second one was very Dali-like, as well. The third was OKeefe-like. The children appreciate your restraint.

  10. Val says:

    If it weren’t for my efforts to be eco-good, I’d throw my mobile into the river. I hate it. It died and I didn’t bother to revive it. Which is just as well as, like at your place, it doesn’t work here anyway! 😉

    That site is hilarious! 🙂

    • Kathy says:

      Isn’t it funny, Val? Glad you enjoyed. I only keep my TracFone for traveling. In case the car dies, it feels helpful to be able to call someone. Sometimes I have to travel more than 1,200 miles when visiting family downstate. It feels good to be within reach of–someone.

  11. kiwidutch says:

    Since we have a land line at home,and I have one in my office at work too and Himself has a mobile (needs one for his business) I have taken the easy option and opted out of having a mobile altogether.

    I’m of the opinion that if it’s urgent they will ring back… yes there are moments when I think a mobile would be handy but I’m not a “phone person” so those moment haven’t lasted long enough for me to cave in and do anything about it.

    Sad to say my Dad knows more about how to text than I do LOL.

    I can go without a phone and it doesn’t bother me… but sans laptop???… agh… could hardly bear thinking about it!

    • Kathy says:

      Hello Ms. Kiwi! So good to see you. Barry’s like you–he’s not a phone person, either. I admit to being a phone person. I love talking with people…except when I don’t. Know what you mean about the laptop. How WOULD we survive?

  12. sonali says:

    Hi Kathy,

    How are you doing? Its been a long time since I read from you, my bad! I’ve been absolutely busy, I misplaced my cell phone & no time to get another one too. 😦

    Well, smart phones are indeed, too ‘smart’. I’m also looking forward to buy an iPhone. Only if I get some time off my work.

    • Kathy says:

      Sonali, my old friend, Sonali! So good to see you. It’s been wild & crazy on the blog lately…lots of excitement. Hoping you get some time off work. Hoping you get some time to do wild & crazy things with your friends. 😉

  13. Carol says:

    I must confess I would love a smart phone. What I have now is only a semi-smart phone and it doesn’t auto-correct. If I use the touch keyboard on the iPad, however, it does auto-correct, so I rarely use it. My handy-dandy bluetooth tablet keyboard is much more obedient. And I’m big on obedient. I hate things that think they know more about what I want to say than I do.

    • Kathy says:

      (Shhh, there is a PART of me that wants a smart phone, too, Carol. It wants to play with a phone that’s almost like one of those robots they used to have on the Jetsons years ago. Did you ever watch the Jetson’s in your childhood?) Yes, things ought be obedient. We oughtn’t be obedient to them…

  14. ....RaeDi says:

    I do not know how to text! We do not have a cell phone. we do not get service where I live. I could have one and go down the road a bit and be able to use it! We have the old fashioned land line without call waiting and all but it serves us just fine! Loved the post! The smart phone would probably out smart us!

    • Kathy says:

      RaeDi, did you ever have a “party line” back in the “old” days where you shared a phone line with several other neighbors? When we first moved here in the late 70’s and early 80’s we shared a phone line. We had an older neighbor gentlemen who liked to get drunk and yell at me. I LOVE our private line. It was an even better invention than a smart phone.

  15. Dana says:

    I am super new to the texting scene (my MOM had to teach me!), but I did make the mistake one time of sending an e-mail that grumbled “I can’t believe I’m paying so much money to get testes” when WHAT I REALLY MEANT TO SAY was “testED”. Oops! (I was in University at the time and had to pay an obscene amount of money to take a final exam to get the necessary credit. Thankfully, the e-mail was sent to my best friend and not to my instructor or the department head.) 🙂

    Heading over to check out that site now.

    • Kathy says:

      Dana, wow, you could almost be on Damn You Auto Correct! Love that story. You could tell a story about it…wait a minute, you just did. How funny!

  16. Dana says:

    Just read the auto corrects out loud with Marty, We both have tears running down our faces– too funny! Thanks for sharing. 🙂

    • Kathy says:

      You made my day. That you laughed. That tears ran down BOTH of your faces. Tell Marty I said “Hi! I will never mistake you and your beard for a terrorist, ever.”

  17. Karma says:

    My supposedly-smart phone (a Blackberry) and my iPod touch regularly disagree with me about what it is I should be typing, but they are not as funny as Damn You Autocorrect, so how smart can they be? 😉 Is it strange that I have regular disagreements with technology?

  18. Susan D. says:

    aaaHahahahaha ..ahaaaahaaaa… hahahahahaaaaaaaa! You were RIGHT! Thanks for the new resource for entertainment … ahahaha .. hahahahahaaaaaaaaaaaa

    • Kathy says:

      Dear Ms. Susan D…gosh I can hear you hahahahha’ing from across the bay! Glad you were entertained. It was such a pleasure to see you in human form today.

  19. wolfsrosebud says:

    thought of you this AM as the skies opened and dumped snow… ah, Kathy has had it all winter… not so much in WI this winter… as for the cell, can’t imagine living without one handy anytime… I’m addicted

  20. Sybil says:

    What a bunny frog host !

    • Kathy says:

      Sybil I read your comment three times thinking “What the heck is she talking about??? Has Sybil lost it?” hahahahahaha…Kathy lost it. She couldn’t even remember what this blog was about momentarily. (See my last reply to forestfae up above. I made it up after your comment came in. thank you!)

  21. Kathy, I curse mobile phones constantly! My 19 year old daughter, I kid you not, is only with us 15.45% of the time, whilst the remainder of her is in text or Facebook land. (You were really lucky to have so much of your neice there!) My daughter SLEEPS with the stupid thing on her bed next to her!!

    My son swears by auto-correct and fiddled with my rarely-switched-on mobile phone once. I had him switch it off immediately!

    I haven’t ever sent any odd text messages myself, although I did receive one from my daughter’s ex-boyfriend once, which was meant for his NEW girlfriend. Now THAT was funny!! 😀

    • Kathy says:

      Only 15.45% of the time? You poor mama! However, I am utterly convinced when your daughter is 25 she’ll be with you at least 53.6% of the time! Grinning at the thought of receiving a text message from your daughter’s ex for his new girlfriend. How funny! How embarrassing!

  22. I bought my phone in another country, so my auto correct is always off, so idonæt have any problems with it. I’ve also turned off all spelling in Open Office & Microsoft Word.
    Anyway, I wanted to comment on that photo on the top of the article; it’s really cool to shoot through a vase/bottle like that.

    • Kathy says:

      Well it’s good to hear that you can turn off Auto Correct. (Never knew that either. Learn something new every day…) Isn’t it fun shooting through a glass/vase? Love it! Love to do it a LOT.

  23. Brenda Hardie says:

    Ok…where to start…first…I have an ancient, very basic cell phone. I text and make phone calls…that’s it. It’s all I need for now, although on occasion I have desired to have the camera/video feature. My son, when he visits, is only here probably 12.43% of the time…maybe even less than that. His smart phone is with him CONSTANTLY. I feel like I’m intruding when I want to talk to him. 😦 Wonder if he realizes that…or if he even cares? 😦 I WILL take the opportunity to teach my youngest son different rules of etiquette regarding phone use. My older son taught himself. And I do think I could live without a cell phone altogether, but it would make me feel more secure while on the road. I also remember the party line phone service! Am glad to not have that kind of phone service anymore. Now, if I lost my computer (which by the way is an ancient desktop clunker, not the sleek new laptops that most people take for granted these days) but like my ancient phone it serves its purpose and boy if I lost my computer I would be heartbroken.
    love your wineglass picture…very interesting 🙂
    Oh and please let me know if forestfae does write a blog about her ancient woodlands…I would LOVE to read it too!! ♥

    • Kathy says:

      Only 12.43% of the time, Brenda? Oh how you must miss the other 87.57% of your son! (**grin** I had to get the calculator cuz I just love numbers!) I know what you mean about feeling more secure on the road. And about the heartbroken horror we would feel if our precious computers disappeared. What WOULD we do? I shall search for forestfae’s blog. It’s brand new. I am sure she would love another reader.

  24. Robin says:

    Auto correct frequently cracks me up. My phone (which is not a smart phone) does this auto fill-in, putting in the word it thinks you want to use next. Because it’s not a smart phone, it puts in some very silly words. Thankfully I’m on to it and have never let a text go out with an inappropriate word.

    Love your words and images, as always. 🙂

    • Kathy says:

      I guess I didn’t realize that you could correct your phone’s message before you sent it out (after Auto correct did its dirty deed). Duh! Of course. They wouldn’t let us relinquish ALL the control, would they, Robin? **And thank you. We are a Blogging Mutual Admiration Society.**

  25. katyarich says:

    I also have a smart phone and texting message is always a night mare, specially because it is always guessing wrong words, :)..aaffffff

    • Kathy says:

      You know just what I mean, then, katyarich! I guess it could–almost–be viewed as fun, as long as you check before sending your message. Thanks for visiting this modern technological blog. lol!

  26. lucindalines says:

    I laughed so hard that I may have cleaned out the junk in my chest that is making my cold seem like an elephant sitting on me.

    • Kathy says:

      My goodness! That was a LOT of laughing, Lucindalines! Wow, I have never heard a comment like that before. You win the Creative Comment of the Day award.

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