Wednesday, August 6, 2008

Blame It on the Ringtone

I didn't win one Mah Jongg game yesterday because every one of the players received too many phone calls. Each interruption was necessary and more than acceptable, but -

The different ringtones of everyone’s cell phones had my mind on anything but the game. Sometimes I wonder if advertisers pay cell phone companies to do subliminal advertising via the selection of songs everyone seems to use for ringtones. Each unique signal of incoming calls yesterday forced my mind off of my game.

When we started to play a few years ago, a few of us used the conventional ringtones offered by our cell phone carriers. This created minor confusion when our phones rang since our purses were usually near each other’s, so we all switched to unique ringtones. Yesterday, the blast of "When the Saints Come Marching In" signaled pictures of an adorable grandchild that all the grandmas at the table enjoy seeing. The only problem with that ringtone is it makes me hungry for a beignet – the fried donut-like cake they sell in New Orleans.

Another friend’s ring is reminiscent of the songs played by the Caribbean bands as passengers board the cruise ships headed for the islands. Instead of thinking about the hand I was playing in Mah Jongg, I had the urge to do the Conga around the table with a Pina Colada in my hand.

"Rocky Mountain High" had me remembering some of the most beautiful sites I’ve ever seen. Instead of concentrating on what tiles the other players were discarding, I was thinking of the fun my family had when we went water rafting down the Snake River.

The second time the phone with a song about New York rang, I decided that instead of making Tilapia for dinner, I would stop by the deli after the game and buy some corned beef and fresh rye bread.

Perhaps if my phone rang, I would have won a game or two. If my "Lullaby and Good Night" ringtone had the same effect on my friends as their ringtones were having on me, perchance they would have dozed off during the game. The way I played yesterday, that would have been the only way I could have won a game.

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