Get Me Away From My iPhone!

I’ve tried leaving it, screen-timing it, weaning myself off it — nothing works

Charlotte Bismuth
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Have you seen the Beatles documentary, “Get Back”? These four men who are known as a cultural unit, these four friends who played together for decades, these members of one tight band — well, they can’t always reach other. “Is George coming?” “I dunno.” “Is John coming?” “I dunno.” And then they sit there, waiting. When they decide to make phone calls, they talk about it like it’s a big decision, someone stands up and walks away, then returns a few minutes later to report back to the group.

“It’s ringing permanently occupied,” I think they say at one point about John’s phone, which to me suggested a rotary phone with the receiver dangling off the hook in a messy room strewn with books and guitars, where two people in love just didn’t want to be bothered.

Meanwhile, in my non-celebrity life in 2021, my husband recently gave me an iPhone case with a little pocket on the back for credit cards. He’s seen me fishing around in the thing I call a wallet (it’s really just an envelope-sized zippered leather pouch) for my cards, he’s heard me calling gas stations to ask if I dropped my card near the pump, he’s noticed that my pouch doesn’t fit in my pocket so I just throw in loose items, like my driver’s license, that he…

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Charlotte Bismuth
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Author of “Bad Medicine: Catching New York’s Deadliest Pill Pusher,” former Manhattan ADA , Columbia Law School grad, occasional legal cartoonist.