Remember When Phones Were Not So Smart?

Would you like to go back to a world where everything wasn’t awful all the time?

Photo: Dirk Tussing

We are nostalgic for the past because we know how it turned out. This is especially important in an age of heightened uncertainty, when the pervasive feeling is one of dread. Our very human tendency to minimize unpleasant memories offers an additional explanation for why the lure of the time before — particularly to a generation that came to consciousness during the brief interval between the worry that our world would end in nuclear holocaust and the worry that our world will end in… well, you’ve got so many more options now, it’s hard to pick just one — exerts such a strong pull on our emotions. Things may not have been so simple but they seem like they were, and we survived. Most of us — particularly the primary producers and consumers of the nostalgia industry — did just fine. When we think back a few decades it’s like a warm, gauzy embrace for our brain.

Given that, it’s only natural that this is happening:

The reintroduction of dumbphones! The phones we had when everything was okay! Just what we need to wean ourselves off of the addictive toxicity of the devices that our ruining our sleep, minds and lives! (Before you get too excited, my fellow Americans, please be aware that these “new” Nokias won’t work on our shores. But given the obvious appeal of a device that overrides our inability to exert personal control over our dumbest desires, it can’t be long before domestic versions are just waiting for us to pick up at any Duane Reade and play with for a few days until we decide that we need to return to the validation which likes and hearts offer our empty existences.) Enjoy your brief time away from the tyranny of idiocy that comes from thinking you are so important that you need to see what people are saying to or about you at every second. And maybe start saving up now: the next generation of not-dumbphones, which you will of course return to, are supposed to be pricey as fuck.