From (Docking) Cradle to the Grave

How much do some people love their cell phones? It’s a grave question, as some people choose to take along their cell phones when they die—or so claims the BBC.


The Beeb traces the roots from modern Australia and South Africa to ancient Egypt. Reasons for the behavior differ. “Some people are finding they like the idea of being buried with the things that defined them while they were alive.”

And the practice is accommodated: “Some funeral parlours will now arrange for the phone put into the box with the ashes following the cremation.”

I want to laugh (and do), but I see something important in the practice. Personalization matters. People grow attached to devices with personal affinity, such as iPods and cell phones. They spend lots of time with these devices, tinker with them, change them or decorate them.

Me, I’m not that attached to my cell phone (Sony Ericsson S710a). I take the mobile enough places as it is. My question: Who do these people want to, uh, talk to on the other side?

Of course, if Granny calls from the after life, don’t answer!

Do you have a mobile phone story that you’d like told? Please email Joe Wilcox: joewilcox at gmail dot com.