What we refer to now as “cell phones” are actually mini-computers, bigger, clunkier and less durable than what we might correctly refer to as “cell phones.”

So when my stepdaughter, Jordan, asked, “Why didn’t you call someone to pick you up?” and I answered, “Because I didn’t have my phone,” what I really meant was, “I’m not going running with my iPhone so it can slap against my leg for a half hour.”

And to clarify additional language, when I say “running,” I mean, “running a quarter mile, walking, jogging, running, bending over to catch my breath, then jogging while I attempt to re-lodge the right earbud, which unlike the left, continues to pop out.”

If I “run” for about two or three miles, I’m “running” for roughly a half hour. So, when I left the condo around 9 a.m. that morning and told my friend, Julie, I was “going for a run,” I certainly intended to return around 9:30 a.m.

This was on Hilton Head Island, and I decided to be cautious. I kind of know my way around Port Royal, but to be safe, I decided to run straight along Folley Field Road for 15 minutes then return, thereby ensuring a half-hour run.

On my way to the bike path, I passed another friend, Emily, who runs each day along the beach before anyone has awoken. I don’t run on sand, even wet sand, because doing so makes my shins feel like they’re going to snap in half. So, I decided to stick to blacktop and concrete. Emily, incidentally, doesn’t run with a cell phone either.

“Emily doesn’t need a cell phone,” Jordan said later, and from that I presumed a feebly-hidden meaning – “Emily is a functioning adult, and you aren’t” – I didn’t appreciate.

“I’ll be back in about a half hour,” I told Emily as I passed. I later noted, but didn’t voice, how Emily wasn’t alarmed when I hadn’t returned two hours later. More »