CellPhone I was crossing the street the other day to get the mail. A large delivery truck appeared, driving very fast (like everyone does on this road…). I sped up to be sure I was off the road by the time the truck got close, and my cell phone fell off, it was clipped to the pocket of my pants. I looked back, there it was, in the middle of the lane, I looked at the truck: no time to dive for cell phone.

I tried to make eye contact with the truck driver and then look at the phone in its brown leather case, drawing his attention to it. If he would have stayed centered in the lane, the phone would have been safe. But, no, he veered, as if he thought  he needed to give me more room as I stood on the shoulder. The tires went squarely over the phone. <sigh>

Curiously, the case looked ok, and the phone actually did too, the whole shell stayed intact. But the screen was obliterated, and it would not even power up. A several-ton truck was just too much for it. My phone is a Treo Palm PDA cell phone, and thank goodness I had synch’ed it recently with my PC, so the data was backed up. I don’t use the Palm aspect of the phone that much, but I do run my sheep flock  management software on it, and have been taking a lot of notes in the field lately, about breeding timing, and foot health. I would have been annoyed to have lost that data. But I didn’t. Phew.

I pay for the $5/month “accident” insurance on the phone. Normally I don’t like electronics insurance plans, I think they are usually priced in favor of the vendor (of course, otherwise they could not stay in business). But this one works out ok for me. I seem to have a pretty consistent rate of phone ruination, about a phone a year (which is the max they will cover, I think). It’s always something.

The plan has a $50 deductible. So, it’ costs me about $110 each year to replace my phone, via the insurance plan. But, it would be a lot more if I had to buy a new PDA phone each time, they cost several hundred dollars. Even used ones don’t come any cheaper. I’m sure these replacements are probably refurbishments, but that’s ok, since I seem to accidentally destroy them before they have a chance to malfunction on their own. Often I get a free upgrade to a later model because they have run out of the model I own. Cool!

The insurance plan’s response is quick- you can make a claim online, and they ship the phone that same day, FedEx overnight. So, by the next day, I had a new phone, did a quick synch with my PC, and I was back in business. My last phone’s synch cord connection was getting flaky, and I couldn’t decide if it was the cord or the phone’s connection that was the problem. This one works beautifully, so it must have been my old phone. So, that was a bonus.