Most girls have one particular coming of age moment in middle school that defines them as an “adult," but I didn't consider myself mature until the day my parents decided I was no longer too stupid to be trusted with my own cellphone.
This was around the time when the concept of a flip phone was considered revolutionary, so I felt pretty cool rolling into school with my awesome clamshell phone -- complete with a pullout antenna I chewed on way too much.
However, that was far from the only option in the technological Wild West that was the mid-2000s. While I assume today's middle schoolers are made fun of for the logo on whichever rectangular touchscreen they have, there was a lot more variety back in the day.
There were also a lot more opportunities to judge people, and that's exactly what I'm going to do now.
The Standard Flip Phone
You were probably more proficient in T9 Word than whichever foreign language you were forced to take. If you were lucky enough to have a cutting edge camera phone, you probably stood in front of a mirror to take your MySpace profile.
The Crappy Flip Phone Your Parents Gave You When You Got Dropped Off Somewhere
Your parents had about as much faith in your ability to not get kidnapped as they did in your ability to both keep track of your phone and not drop it on the ground. They probably also made you give them your AIM password.
You probably already had a flip phone but you saw a commercial for a THIN, SHINY, PINK flip phone and guilted your parents into buying it for you. They regretted it immediately after you signed up for one of those wallpaper subscription services with the terrible commercials.
Your parents took yours away for racking up $1,256.70 in messaging fees in a single month.
A Bedazzled Sidekick
You never really understood why your mom thought Paris Hilton was a bad influence until you discovered the reason she became famous in the first place a couple of years later.
You only had one of these because of a "Buy One Get Four Free" deal. Unless you were one of those kids featured on "Good Morning America" for starting a successful business at the age of 11, the only reason you had a Blackberry was to play Brickbreaker in the bathroom. You would have used BBM if you had any other friends with a PIN.
That "Indestructible" Nokia Phone
Your dad never returned the company cellphone he got in 1997 and you could sneak into the bathroom to play Snake without having to worry about dropping it into the toilet.
You had separation anxiety when you weren't playing Pokémon Silver on your Game Boy Advance, so you kept this at your side at all times to prevent panic attacks.
Your parents didn't trust you with a cellphone and you thought your social schedule was much more rigorous than it actually was. At least you had more games than anyone else.
Your parents didn't trust you and probably still don't.