If I Sold Cell Phones…On Dropping your Blackberry in the Toilet

By Justin Seibert| 4 Min Read | July 22, 2008

I often make analogies to flushing things down the toilet.  Often times those analogies are about money, so that’s how I know I’ve gotten old.  That and when younger employees like Derrick call me old.

Well, I went and darn near did flush something down the toilet this week.  You see, I read in my Blackberry manual this week that it’s best to wash regularly for optimal performance, so I threw it in the toilet while giving my kids a bath.  Then I went back and re-read the manual. Turns out it actually said, “never submerge me, you goofball”.  You can see why I got confused though.

My cell phone is now dead and I am going through withdrawals worse than when they stopped showing Charles in Charge reruns.

Because this is not an everyday occurrence at least in the Seibert household, I didn’t know what to do.  Turns out, I did just about everything wrong. When I eventually went online to look for solutions, I found several good sources.  Basically the consensus is that you:

  1. Remove the battery immediately.
  2. Dry it.  This can be done by putting in a bag of rice (uncooked for all you Martha Stewarts), putting in front of the air conditioning, or heating on the back of a computer monitor / tv / wrapped in a paper towel in the oven. Then depending on what method you used, let it sit for 1-3 days before putting in the battery and powering up.
  3. Alternatively – this should really be 2b, but I don’t feel like going in and fixing the code manually – you could dry it out by submerging it in grain alcohol.  I think this only applies to college students because I don’t know anyone else who has 190 proof alcohol lying around handy.

I did none of these, so I think I’m stuck.  Although I am going to try a different battery because I got it to turn on very briefly earlier today.

Here are the morals of the story in no particular order:

  • I am a jagoff.
  • If you ever drop your cell phone into a pool of water, take out the battery and dry immediately.
  • Scott Baio Fan Club is still in the top 3 best intramural sports team names I’ve ever heard.
  • Think about content you can create that potential clients will find valuable.  I did a google search for “fix blackberry dropped in water”.  You know what came up #1 and provided me the best information?  A University of Texas sports fan forum.How many people like me are searching for information like that?  Maybe not a lot on that exact phrase, but there are a lot of long-tail searches just like it for people that have likely unrepairable phones that will need to purchase new ones.  In this case, a likely $400 purchase.  Now where do you think I would rather buy – from the Sprint shop that told me I was out of luck when I called about repair – or from a site that tries to help me out from not needing to buy?The best part – once your blog or forum is built, if you can gain followers, there’s no cost to you to build this type of content that search engines love.  This was posted in a forum!  The only place in the top 5 on Google that can actually profit from my dilemma is Cellular Dr., a made for adsense search arbitrager that hosts the very seo-friendly cell-phone-repair-faq.com.No matter whether you use a Web site, blog, forum, wiki, or any other form of internet content platform, you can reach these people – and profit from them in the short- and long-run by providing useful content.
  • University of Texas fans can – in the proper context – provide value to society.  The same has not been proven for the other UT outside of laboratory settings.

Post Script: I am using this as my excuse for not calling people back for the next score.  I went to Washington, D.C. this past weekend and have decided to start using score as a time frame in general conversation after visiting the Lincoln Memorial.  I hadn’t seen those buildings and monuments in a long, long time, and don’t think I really appreciated them before.  You couldn’t build the US Treasury building today and it would cost you over $1 billion to even try.

Post Post Script: That pic above is the first one that comes up when you do a Google Image search for “UT fan.”  That’s about right.

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