I don't know who took this photo (thanks, Wired) but they must have been in my kitchen in the past week. Same phone. Same plastic container. Same rice. Same reason.
For the second time in my two decades of cellphone use, the terrible thing happened. Phone ends up in water. In this most recent case--and in a ridiculous fit of faux efficiency--I was using the phone as a wedge between the cover of my computer and its keyboard. I didn't want to take the time to shut down--or apparently the difficulty of placing the phone in my pocket.
Oh well. I was carrying too many things from room to room and watched as the phone slipped out from its well-chosen perch (ha!) and, in what seemed like slow motion and without even grazing the rim, into the glass of water in my other hand.
Others might have reached into the glass and removed the phone, then rushed to put it into rice, the very sophisticated method by which people, of which there are many googling reveals, dry out their phones. My advice to do the same came from an offspring whose phone suffered the same fate last year.
I, brilliantly, took a different path. After shaking the phone violently in the effort to get rid of any "loose" water, I then, stupidly, decided to plug my phone in "to make sure it was still working." Dumb, dumber, and dumbest. I saw the phone, which was still on, go to off - and then I rushed to the kitchen to give it the deep rice treatment.
Well, two days went by and then I tried turning it on again. Having read up in the meantime, I was pretty pessimistic. (Plugging it in while wet, as I'd originally done, is the anti-treatment, sure to fry the phone.) It didn't start. But it appeared to be dry so I attempted to plug it in again. It wouldn't take the plug. So I figured that in my having plugged it in when still wet, I somehow caused the connection to swell - or something...who knows? I'm not very technical.
I waited a mournful week, lamenting how much this little act of efficiency was going to cost. And then I went to the Apple store. "Oh, just take it to the Genius Bar," John, the store manager said, "and they'll swap it out for you for $200." A lot better than the $600 I was expecting...but still a hefty bit for a phone that merely took a swim.
But, before I could even get to the Genius Bar, an itinerant Genius, named Ben, who was wandering the store helping forelorn customers like myself, said, "Let me have that for a second." He tried plugging it but was unable to. He turned the phone up to inspect the connection, and said, "Well, look at that. There's a piece of rice in there!"
Which he promptly removed. And the phone turned right on. Then when he tried putting the SIM card back in, guess what? Another piece of rice. Which he also kindly removed. And I was back among the hyper-connected.
My advice now to people whose iPhones have chosen to go swimming? USE VERY LARGE GRAINS OF RICE. Arborio, one Apple employee observing this drama, proposed.
And to friends whom I'd emailed immediately saying what had happened -- particularly to those who text frequently -- I'm back. Or my phone is back. And to my hubby, who was kind enough to let me use his phone in my hour, I mean, days, I mean week of need, thank you so very much.
Last point: I used the phone to which I'd forwarded my calls much much much less than my own phone. I texted only once or twice in genuine moments of "the person really needs to know this." I stopped carrying the phone around with me, even leaving it behind when I left the house on a number of occasions.
Hmmmmm...this indispensible device, indeed.