I’ve done a stupid thing … I think


I’m completely hopeless with technology. It’s a little worrying, considering I work as a digital journalist.

Mobile phones confound me. I was the last person in the world to get one and I’ve only recently learned how not to yell into them.

I do not get the whole wifi/data/mobile roaming thing AT ALL.

But I have fallen madly, deeply in love with texting.

As a fellow mad texter friend said to me yesterday: “It’s so much lower impact than talking in real life.”

I also love having the last word. If you text me, I will text you back. If you reply, I will text you back. And repeat. And repeat. To infinity and beyond.

I am inexhaustible. And prolific.

What I didn’t factor into my max texting predilection was having one of my mad texting friends go overseas.

So I may have sent 1000, possibly more, texts to them without considering the charges involved.

Yesterday, it belatedly occurred to me that you have to pay for text messages. And I started freaking out, thinking: “I am a single mother, I can’t afford to pay $2000 phone bills.”

And then I thought: “Hang on, when’s the last time I got a phone bill?”

And then I realised: “Husband still pays my phone bill.”

Sad face.

Actually, make that panicked face.

An additional 50 agitated texts followed to my mad texting mates – including the one overseas, I really know how to dig myself in deeper  – about how I could resolve my situation.

My mad texting mates suggested I call Optus to try and change my “plan”. But I can’t because it’s in Husband’s name and Optus is very retro about flibbertigibbet spouses needing to have the account holder’s permission to do anything.

So I sent Husband a sheepish text confessing my sin. It went something like this: “Have done stupid thing. Texted someone overseas maybe 1000 times (not an exaggeration). Am scared about the bill because I think you are still the account holder. Feel sick.”

Moments after I sent the message, my mad texting overseas friend realised they were probably the one who’d be getting the terrifying bill. But it was too late.

They suggested: “You could maybe say: oh silly me – I thought it was Austria – but its Australia … always get those confused.”

I didn’t think that would fly. Husband knows I’m not the simpering Marilyn Monroe type. Although he can’t quite believe how hopeless I am at trying – and failing – to make the DVD player work in his absence.

So I sent Husband another sheepish text saying: “Might have panicked unnecessarily. Was texting Australian number. Forget I said anything. Feeling sick again …”

I suspect he thinks I’ve gone slightly mad. But he was very nice about it.

I think I have gone slightly mad, because the fright hasn’t stoppped me texting.

I called my mum last night to have a moan about my sticky situation and she – being a former Optus high-flyer – was all like: “Sweetheart, it’s only 25c or something per text.”

And I’m like: “Yes, Mum. But I’ve sent 1000. Maybe 2000.”

And she was like: “Oh.”

I’m reminded of a scene from Doctor Who a few weeks back when he said: “You can’t really tell if something’s an addiction until you try to give it up.”


How terrifying do you think my bill – well, to be entirely accurate, Husband’s – bill will be?

Song of the day: Chris Isaak “Wicked Game”

(Heavens, the clip is quite … something.)


4 thoughts on “I’ve done a stupid thing … I think

  1. my txts with optus r free… except when im voting on big brother… lol
    u may have unlimited calls & txts??? its on most plans $50 & higher…

  2. I’m with Telstra and have unlimited calls and texts. I’ve sent texts to friends overseas (although not 1000!) and haven’t incurred any extra charges. Fingers crossed for you.

  3. The phone companies know that people feel compelled to reply to text messages. So it is the normal cost to send one, if you are at home, and the recipient doesn’t pay to receive it. But if they reply… it’ll likely cost as much as $1 per message.

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