I'm beginning to think of customized ring tones the same way I do of vanity license plates. I think the cell phone industry has created a real monster here. I admit, it is convenient to be able to identify whomever is calling before you look at the phone. I also admit to having Wyclef's "Perfect Gentleman" as my ringtone for two solid years, in part because there are few things as wonderful as hearing "Just cause she dances go-go, it don't make her a ho, no!" and then picking up to speak with my mother. But when I got my new phone, the old song sounded like crap on its speakers so I was forced to retire it and move to a standard telephone ring. An encounter I had today made me think that maybe I was just in the nick of time.
In the waiting room at my allergist's office, A woman's cell phone rang four times and loudly. I thought it was great that someone loves Beyonce so much that she kept "Irreplaceable" as her ringer even after it had been sickeningly overplayed for six months a year ago. It was actually kind of fun to hear it played over and over as she got phone calls--like a spontaneous 9 AM dance party! But then there was such a let-down when it only got to "You must not know bout" and then stopped! I just wanted to turn to her and say "Let it ring, baby! let it ring!"
In other troubling news, sometimes when I put my phone on vibrate and then stick it in my back pocket, I don't feel it ringing. I think the fat on my butt is dampening the vibration to such an extent that it never reaches my vibratory sensory receptors. I guess the fat is supposed to do that, so that you don't feel every pebble on the ground when you sit down, but it's still disturbing. Also disturbing: the fact that med school is so terrible that I'm contemplating re-starting my antidepressants.