I’ve recently joined the ranks of people brought to the crossroads of a life decision after being exposed to the squirm-inducing cable television program Hoarders. While grubbing around for my model-making tools I ran across a giant metal spider; the remnant of a plot by my friend Alice to take me out of the picture.
Back in the late 1990s I bought my very first cellphone: a Nokia 2160. Perusing the catalog of accessories for the phone I saw that Nokia made a car kit that would allow the phone to be mounted to your dashboard, but only if you were willing to drill holes in your dashboard or forever scar it with epoxy. Neither of these solutions appealed to me so I approached my friend Alice, an extraordinarily talented artist and metal-smith, with a request for a rig that would sit in the floorboard of my car and hold my phone for me on a platform.
Now, I may have said something about “making it cool like Batman” because that’s the sort of thing I’m prone to say from time to time… but I had no idea how much “cool” Alice would pour into the thing.
Truth was that I didn’t really care what the phone holder looked like, I just needed something that would work – so when she came back to me with her solution I was blown away! Alice had fashioned a bug-like cage out of iron, designed to cradle my phone within its curvy metal rod legs, each leg tipped with an iron ball. The entire rig was mounted atop a flexible gooseneck which attached to a flat metal base at the bottom.
It was genius!
It was artistic!
It was rather heavy.
I discovered this fact one afternoon when taking a hard left turn because the phone, riding in its awesome new black iron bracket, swung away from me, over to face the passenger door. Moments later I made a turn to the right and the heavy metal platform swung over toward me and grabbed the gear shifter with its metal legs.
I mean, totally GRABBED it.
It kind of grabbed my leg too.
This act of aggression was quickly followed by panicky shouts (mine), loud curses (mine) and a great deal of veering back and forth along the roadway (me, me, me).
Over the course of the next several months I fought several skirmishes with “Alice’s Grabby Grabber”, escaping each time with my life. I started wondering if she was sitting at home controlling it somehow and in the process I became a little frightened of her and her metal monster and I resolved to be done with the whole thing, but I was reluctant to give the rig up entirely because I enjoyed owning such a unique piece of art.
However, after a particularly harrowing trip through a Wal-Mart parking lot I knew that I had to retire the darned thing.
But I still like it.
Please don’t hurt me Alice!!!