Early days of mobile phones

The subject of mobile phones came up at the office the other day. The staff members who are much younger than I am were talking about their flip phones and Black­berries.

Well, let me tell you…
my first mobile phone was a Motorola bag phone. It was housed in a big black bag with its own antenna and everything.

I placed it on the floor between the two front seats of the van I was driving at the time.

If my memory serves me right, you could hook it up to an external antenna for better reception.

I can think of quite a few things I have used in my lifetime that staffers have only read or hear about.

I was in the basement the other day and accidentally came upon the bill of sale for the very first car that I owned. The total price was $165. And the property tax was $12.

Everything was much less expensive back then. The car was a 1956 Plymouth convertible and it could get me to Wichita just as easy as I get there now—if I didn’t mind the noise, and the fact that it didn’t have a heater in it, and the great big hole to the outside from where the floor shifter had been removed and replaced with the shifter that we called “three on a tree.”

Can you imagine everyone walking around carrying a bag phone to talk to whomever? And there was no such think as texting or taking photos with it.

It was bad enough reaching down to pick up the receiver.

I am thankful that I can drive again, since my double vision is correctible with a special lens that fits on the inside of my right lens in my glasses.

The left side of my face in the area of my left temple is still a bit numb, but otherwise seems to be healing nicely.

It will be nearly eight weeks since the surgery. “Time heals all wounds” is a good saying.

I think I may have kept that old bag phone in the event it would be back in style someday.

It will never come back in style, but my nature is to keep almost everything— just in case.

Have you ever had your luggage retracting handle get stuck in the up or down position? Me, too.

I googled the problem and found a couple of videos on YouTube that showed me how to fix them. So I got started on them and found out that ours that didn’t work are different from those on the video. Baggalini brand is much harder and more complicated. And the plastic parts that are broken may be a job for the high school’s 3D printer.

If you wish to share your comments or ideas, my e-mail address is joel@

Written By
More from Joel Klaassen
Pickleball rising in Lawrence
I had never witnessed pickleball being played until I went with Dave...
Read More