I recently read a lens on Squidoo about the product featured in the above picture: a retro handset for cell phones. When I first saw the lens and the photo I thought it was dumb (the product, not the lens). Who would want an old-fashioned telephone handset for their modern cell phone? I remember phones with handsets like that from my childhood — aren’t we past that now? But then I read the lens and thought about it, and now I think they’re somewhat cool and could be useful.
The lens talks about the radiation issue. Cell phones emit radiation, and these handsets are supposed to lessen one’s exposure to radiation. It’s supposed to reduce up to 99% of the radiation you’d absorb using a cell phone directly. The lens has some good information about radiation and this handset in particular, including product details and videos. Check it out.
But what I think is most interesting is how useful this could be when doing chores. Yes, chores. Now I know chores aren’t usually talked about in the same sentence as cell phones, but they do relate, at least for me they do. When I was a child I remember Mom cradling the phone between her chin and shoulder so she could have her hands free to cook or wash dishes or fold laundry or care for me and my brothers. I admired the way she could talk on the phone and do something else at the same time. When I got older I learned to do the same thing. I appreciated being able to do boring chores while also doing something interesting like talking to a friend. But then I got a cell phone, and it was a lot harder to hold the phone with my shoulder. I felt like I had to bend my head over farther which made my neck hurt. Plus a problem I have with my current phone is that somehow I manage to accidently push buttons or something. At least that’s the only explanation I’ve been able to think of for why my phone hangs itself up more frequently when I’m trying to use it holding it with my shoulder.
Yes, I know there are hands-free options. I used to have a pair of earbuds that plugged into my phone, but I think those are uncomfortable. I know there’s also regular headphones, and a headset that fits over the ear. My husband says that last looks like the earpieces that people in Dr. Who episodes featuring Cybormen wore as an intermediate step before turning into Cybermen. He teases that if I bought one of those I would turn into a Cyborman, or rather Cyberwoman, too.
I may yet buy one, but finding out about this retro handset gives me one more option for using my cell phone while doing chores. It may not be completely hands free, but I already know it’s more comfortable to hold between my shoulder and chin than a cell phone is, and there’s no risk of becoming a Cyberman.