Network: Dog and bone with a bullish ring

My Tech; Bob Mills tells Jennifer Rodger about his favourite gadget, a Nokia mobile phone
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The Independent Culture
All I have to say is "it's a banana phone" and people know what I mean. For about three or four years, when everyone had a mobile, I avoided having one because I thought it would be the last bastion of my privacy taken from me. But now I can't imagine for one second not having one.

The great thing about it is that it means - which I didn't realise because I am so stupid! - you can use them in tandem with your own phone. I didn't know about call divert, thought you had to give everyone in the world your mobile phone. I didn't know that you can actually send written messages on it, write stupid little notes to my wife and mates. I'm sure it's meant to send important notes, but for instance some gags are better written than told, so you send them on the mobile.

I suddenly realised I was living in the Dark Ages. If I was out, I had to find a phone box, and then it seemed overnight that very few took money any more. So it was no good finding a phone at 2am, then having to find somewhere that sold phone cards. I think there has been a conspiracy in the communications industry to make us buy mobiles.

The other great thing about this one is that it doesn't have to have a normal ring. Mine plays the Torreador song from Carmen, and sometimes I get people to phone me just to listen to the music!

I went into a shop and said I was a complete idiot, and didn't want anything I couldn't use, like one that sends faxes or connects to e-mail - just give me the handiest phone that's least likely to break. I am also quite a big bloke, and tried the little ones but the distance from ear to mouth is too great. This one pulls out to be a almost a normal size telephone.

The other great thing is I can't talk and think very well when I am sitting down - you are at a distinct disadvantage if tied to a table. As soon as I start walking around I start thinking quicker. But that's not just me, it's probably a physiological fact. Any "great idea" phone calls have always been made on the mobile.

At home I am normally doing family stuff; I only go into the office when I have work to do, so the spare time is when I am in my car. Being able to spend that time chatting and doing business means it frees up those hours which would normally be lost.

I would be terrified of using it in odd places in case I got found out. If I am in a conversation and the going's getting rough, and need a bit of thinking time, you can cut them off and blame it on the phone. The only problem is down to my own lack of ability with technical things. I am a technophobe. I am not proud of it - it's not inverted snobbery. I would love to be able to operate a computer properly, and am embarrassed that I have a machine capable of so many activities but I can do three things with it: turn it on, write, print. I've been shown how, but didn't understand, and got annoyed at the person for exposing my lack of ability. If I ever had the time to learn how I know that my life would be finished, and I would sack my agent.