Wednesday, 28 March 2007

BLT

I didn’t used to be one for custom ringtones on my mobile phone. When I got my Sony Ericsson T616 a few years back, the only additional ringtone I used on it, other than Sony Ericsson’s fairly nice included set, was a ring that sounded like an old telephone. But when that phone went belly up, I ended up with the Motorola V551 (since replaced by a V557). The ringtone selection that came with the Moto was anemic, and you can bet I wasn’t shelling out three bucks for ringtones from Cingular AT&T.

I’ve become one of those people who can’t stand the default rings on most phones, and for whatever reason it irks me when someone’s phone rings in public and you can instantly tell it’s a Nokia, or a Motorola, or they’re with Cingular AT&T, or Verizon, because they never bothered to change the default ring. And so many people don’t change the default ring, how do you ever know it’s your phone that’s ringing when you’re out in public?

But I digress. Yes, there are plenty of of free ringtones available online, but this time around I thought I would just make my own. One copy of iTunes, one copy of Audio Hijack, and voila!—instant custom ringtones. I only needed 22 seconds of any particular song, as that’s how long the Moto rings before it goes to voice mail.

The first song I ripped was The Who’s “Baba O’Riley”. The synthesizer at the beginning makes a great ringtone, and people always seem to look at me with a sense of wonderment when they see it’s my phone making that sound. They may not be able to place the music at first, but they know they’ve heard it somewhere before. This is my default ringer.

The other song I ripped was New Order’s “Bizarre Love Triangle”. This ringtone was applied to all of my wife’s numbers in my address book.

“Bizarre Love Triangle”?? Really, Chris?

Yes, I know it may sound odd to have a song so named be the default anthem for whenever your one and only beloved calls, but there’s a profound and sensible reason behind this.

Oh, this should be good.

Oh it is. You see, when I was in high school, I was a metalhead. Oh, I didn’t necessarily hang out with the metalhead crowd, but I was in to heavy metal and hard rock, with a little punk thrown in on the side. This was my big teenage rebellion; having grown up on a lot of classic country (some of which I still enjoy), along with Neil Diamond and other assorted light pop, I went a different direction, musically. This is nothing new; the kids who followed Elvis and The Beatles were rebelling against their parents’ choice of music, too.

My wife, on the other hand, was in to the “New Wave” stuff, the alternative stuff of the ’80s before it took on something of a grungification in the ’90s. One of the groups she followed was New Order.

After we met in college and began dating, I was gradually exposed to this world of music her high school years had been spent in, and out of all of that, there were a handful of songs by New Order that I could stand, and a couple I actually liked. “Bizarre Love Triangle” was by far my favorite New Order song. So because it was something from my wife’s past that I grew to like, thus becoming something we now share, and it has that cool opening to the song, that’s how it became the custom ringtone for when my wife calls me on my mobile.

Okay, okay. That’s pretty good.

See? I told you. Now, you’ve read this far, and you’re probably wondering why the heck I’m bothering to tell you all of this. Here’s the payoff:

I’ve been using BLT as my wife’s ringtone for coming up on a couple of years now. Yesterday, in the Pilot on the way to the little phisch’s karate class, my phone rings. “Bizarre Love Triangle” begins to play, and the from the back seat, without any input from me whatsoever, the little phisch cries out, “It’s Mommy calling!!”

This morning, my wife is taking the little phisch to school, and on the radio, what song should happen to come on? You guessed it. At this point the little phisch cries out, “It’s Daddy’s phone!!”

Kids have amazing minds.

posted on March 28, 2007 11:32 AM




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