The Herald Bulletin

October 5, 2013

Theresa Timmons: iPhone upgrade produces panic

The Herald Bulletin

---- — Winston Churchill said, "To improve is to change; to be perfect is to change often."

Well OK, Mr. Churchill. Maybe that is true in the world of cancer research and treatment. Or creating cars that get better gas mileage. Or earthquake and tornado prediction.

But not in Theresa's world.

A dialogue box popped up on my iPhone screen the other day, inquiring about my interest in upgrading to i0S 7.

I don't really understand upgrades and updates when it comes to phones and computers. Usually I just ask my husband Seth, who tells me if my answer should be yes or no. He understands me, and knows what I can tolerate, so he knows what the answer should be.

But I was alone when the box popped up. I panicked.

So I defaulted to his advice about updates on a computer — usually they improve what is already there or offers some sort of protection. So I made a decision and pushed "YES".

An entire sequence of events began, and there were more questions. Questions I didn't know the answers to. Questions about iClouds and passwords.

And before I knew it, my phone had been completely redecorated, polluting and upsetting the delicate balance of synapse connections and well-worn pathways in my brain. When I walked into the house after work, Seth was stretched out in his chair watching television, his reading glasses resting on the end of his nose.

"Seth!" I said, a little too loud.


"My phone is all messed up. I said yes to the box. I thought I was doing the right thing and now my phone looks all cartoony. I think the colors might give me seizures. Or a migraine." I was distraught.

He pushed his glasses up his nose to the reading notch. "Let me see it."

But even before my phone landed in his hands, Seth knew what he would have to do. He knows because of the dolphins.

I have blue striped wallpaper in one of my bathrooms. The chair rail height border is embellished with an endless line of dolphins, swimming nose to tail in a rectangular loop around my bathroom. I stare at their happy faces from the toilet seat every day, with my elbow on my thigh, chin in hand. The wallpaper is old and is starting to curl a little around the seams and edges (probably due to Seth's time in the bathroom), but it still works. I have a personal relationship with my grossly outdated dolphins. A relationship grounded in familiarity and comfort.

I also wore the same shirt in two consecutive driver's license photographs. Four years apart, and I had on the same shirt. Not on purpose, it just worked out that way. And I had the exact same haircut.

I've kept the exact same friends all my life. I've had exactly the same husband (although I did recently Google 'annulment' after he accidently broke the glass in the front door — as it turns out 30 years of marriage was a big roadblock). Dr. Seuss is still the best, and so is "To Kill a Mockingbird." I am still mad that the Alexandria Skating Rink isn't a skating rink anymore. In my opinion Lucy and Ethel's dressmaker was way more talented than Miley Cyrus's. And I have 105 recorded episodes of Andy Griffith stored in my DVR, and when I watch them it lowers my blood pressure more effectively than a beta blocker.

There you have it. I am not a person who embraces change.

So naturally Seth knew he would be seeking information about "uninstalling i0S 7." Uninstalling change.

Marilyn Monroe said, "Sometimes good things fall apart so better things can fall together."

Obviously Marilyn didn't have an iPhone....

Theresa Timmons' column appears every first and third Sunday. She is an Elwood resident and can be reached at