Monday, July 9, 2018

How Not to Spend the 4th of July in London: Have Your IPhone X Stolen

I gave a talk in Brighton, England Saturday. We came to London early to enjoy the greatness of the City How though do you spend the 4th of July in England? The 4th is certainly not a Holiday for the Brits. They do not want to commemorate the loss of their first empire in North America to some unsophisticated Colonials. They have a memorial in St. Paul’s Cathedral to General Cornwallis but it doesn’t mention his inglorious surrender at Yorktown. Gentleman Johnny Burgoyne, the bon vivant playwright politician general with four children by a mistress, lies in Westminster Abbey, which leaves out his surrender at Saratoga. England has so many heroes in the glorious history of its empire that it need not recognize the losers. The British are proud of their empire. They are proud that they peacefully granted independence to Australia, Canada, India/Pakistan, New Zealand, South Africa, Egypt, Iraq, and the scores of other colonies, dominions and protectorates. They are proud that most have remained in the British Commonwealth of Nations, and that a few have even stayed as British territories. They are not proud of having been kicked out of the 13 colonies and having the mighty British Army humiliated twice by the Americans, including Andrew Jackson’s crushing Wellington’s best at New Orleans in 1815. Yes, they kissed and made up, but they don’t forget. Jorge Carro, a Cuban refugee who became the Law Librarian at Ohio Northern and then at the University of Cincinnati, said many times in his inimical Cuban accent “Ye may forgive, but ye never forget.” The British have not forgotten. The 4th of July goes unmentioned by the Brits, even in their multitude of newspapers, on the 4th. Why discuss the 4th when there’s Wimbledon and the World Cup? We could go to the American Embassy for their 4th regalia and spectacular, but weren’t invited. So I got snarky. Why not wear a cap with the American Flag and the words United Sates? The Brits would not understand the meaning, but it was the 4th! I knew; my wife knew. Mistake, the Empire struck back against this non-British descendant colonial. To use a British phrase, “Blimey, my IPhone was pinched.” I realized it within 100 yards, but it was too late. It was already in use elsewhere with busy signals. Contacted Apple, contacted AT&T. The phone is now dead. Both were very helpful. They said to file a police report. The London Metropolitan Police were very sympathetic. I apologized for bothering them with a stolen IPhone when real crime is being committed. They wished me well with the remainder of the stay. It’s amazing the information they could pull up on this colonial. Went to the insurance company on line. Very helpful; a new phone will arrive once we return. It’s amazing what they could pull up about me online. Another manifestation of my warning to Torts students: “Very little is private today. The less privacy we have in the computer age, the more we desire.” We have become wedded to our cells. Yes, we feel naked without our cell, but the loss of a phone is only inconvenient, especially while traveling. It’s only an inconvenience – not tragic; a new phone became available in a few days. It’s a blimey inconvenience to change a ton of sign-ons and passwords, but that’s an inconvenience that should be periodically performed anyway. The real loss is the hundreds of pictures, which had not yet made it into the Apple Cloud. There’s still memories and photos on the Nikon. A lesson I learned today is that the dead phone had life after death, chewing up GB’s of usage. The Sim card was still alive in another phone. AT&T had not killed the Sim card! AT&T confirmed today that the activation of the replacement IPhone with a new Sim card killed the old sim.

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